Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

As The Sun Rises September 17, 2014

Sometimes it’s incredibly subtle. Other times it hits me in the face. Literally. I speak, of course, of dear baby Carter and all the things that change with him on a daily basis. I frequently hear mom repeat the same response when people ask her how he’s doing. There is something new every day, she says. Treasure Seeker

Recently much of the change has been physical. He’s moving. A lot. He’s crawling all over the place and getting into all kinds of things he shouldn’t. Mom says she doesn’t think it will be long before he’s walking. And he is strong. You wouldn’t guess it from looking at his 20-pound frame, but take it from me – there is a whole lot of gusto in those tiny little guns of his.

But something happened tonight that struck me. It might have been a fluke. Like one of those things you can convince yourself of even if it might not actually have been the case. But I have a pretty keen sense of hearing and tonight I think Carter said the two most important first words he could ever say. Both have been making regular appearances in his daily babble fest of syllables right along with baabaabaa. Today there was something different though, like he was saying things on purpose.

“Mamamama,” he said when mom left the room to warm up his bedtime bottle. And, less then 15 minutes later, “dada” came out of his mouth as dad gave him his nightly bath.

As I said, it is possible this is all wishful thinking and just happened by coincidence. Because sometimes it is incredibly subtle. I’m pretty sure mom wouldn’t have even thought anything of it had dad not pointed it out. And then at bath time, well, it seems as though everything pieced together just as it should in that moment.

I know I’ve had my qualms about having a strong, mobile, babbler of a little person in my forever home. But he’s managed to do something pretty spectacular to my way of thinking. Change is not a favorite thing of mine, but he has changed how I perceive the unknown. As he grows, he changes each day. And as he changes, I realize he has changed me. I still love routine, but there is something about knowing tomorrow will bring something new again brings even more joy to each new day. As the sun rises, there will be change. And that’s a fabulous thing.

 

Daily Dose of Nonsense April 10, 2014

Human communication never ceases to amaze me. Sometimes not saying anything at all says more than words. Other times words themselves bring conversation to a halt. Not to mention the nonverbal communication. And the emotions behind it all.

Me and My BuddySo I have to admit that it has been pretty interesting watching my little person develop a sense of language. Starting before he was born when he would kick my forever mom in the ribs. I think he was saying he wanted out. Then, for the first few months of his life, he has primarily cried to communicate all things.

That stopped today. Well, not exactly. The crying is still in the repertoire, but the vocabulary seems to be expanding. It’s been happening more frequently over a span of the last few weeks. But today I am sure of it. Dear baby Carter was, in his 3-month-old baby way, talking. To mom. He was looking her in the eyes and speaking. To which she would respond and he would respond and so on. Sure, mom’s words were coherent (and his were not), but that’s no matter.

Nonsense. From the ground up, that was my source of joy today. Which got me to thinking how nice it would be to find some sort of incoherent nonsense in all of our days. Some sort of absolute silliness that makes no sense at all other than that it is our daily dose of nonsense.

Suddenly I believed the words of Austrian-British philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein who said that “if people never did silly things nothing intelligent would ever get done.”

Because those precious moments made mom cry those same tears I used to lick off her face when she was pregnant. Tears of joy. My favorite kind. I much prefer those tears to the ones little Carter makes sometimes. I’ve even been known to hide under the bed sometimes when he cries.

So today when he chose to use what will one day become his primary source of communication, I too felt a small bit of relief. And pride. And joy. From the ground up, it didn’t matter that it was complete and utter nonsense. It was joy embodied in screeches and babbles. It was another example of the wonder of human communication. It was life.

For a sample of the new little conversationalist: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=573841715697&l=3886000390073174814