They used to say that when infants smiled it was just gas but studies are finally coming out now deciding that babies are probably in all actuality smiling. I never really had an opinion on this until having my own baby and being able to interact with her all day every day for the first few weeks of her life. Now, like most parents, I insist that she’s so beautiful and so smart and that she certainly knows how to smile when she’s happy.
Babies don’t really understand emotions I guess. They cry but not for the same reasons we do. I can tell her that her hair is a mess but I highly doubt it will hurt her feelings and make her cry. She cries for hunger, for a clean diaper, for sleep, for gas trouble. So really they are not crying for sadness but for pain or need. So to know that science agrees the smiles are real actually makes me happy too. To know that joy is one of the first emotions that they feel and know how to convey is endearing. This is a testament to how sweet and angelic babies really are. They are so pure and innocent and embody everything good in the world so why wouldn’t they portray happiness?
I have had the heart melting joy of seeing her smile several times. She’s a pretty happy baby. She dreams when she sleeps and makes little faces. Sad ones, happy ones and furrowed little brows. I only wish I could step into her dreams to see what such a new life can be dreaming about. I imagine it’s something from another place and time and pass time watching her and imagining she’s recalling heaven or family of mine that sent her to me or maybe even a past life. Who really knows?
The more we interact though, the more I know that she truly is smiling for me, at me, with me. I can’t even begin to express the privilege I feel to see this and even have some part whether large or small in creating it. It was a miracle alone creating her and now I get to watch her grow and see these little things that mean so much start to develop in her. I get to watch her features change as they become her own. I stare at her constantly wondering who she resembles with each feature.
Today I got a real treat at the changing station. We had both just woken up and before her breakfast I was changing her diaper and talking to her like usual. Though I know she still can’t see too clearly, her eyes fixed onto mine and she stared at me with this intentness that made me feel like she was understanding everything I was saying to her. And then she started smiling to me so big that I was waiting to hear a laugh roll out of her mouth at any time. It was pure joy and amusement in her little angel face and I can’t even begin to explain how amazing it was to watch.
She amazes me every day with her little personality and I am so excited to be part of this journey of hers. There is nothing I won’t do to see joy in her face like today. And though I know there will come a time where I may encounter more attitude than any other emotion, I only hope I can still bring smiles to her face years from now too.