Friday, May 29, 2009

Sneezes in Threes

Since the day Micah was born, when he sneezes, he generally sneezes in threes... atchoo, atchoo! atchoo! I love it - when he starts sneezing, we usually count 1....2 (silence) (wait for it)...3 (there you go - all done)! What I find particularly interesting about this observation is that I also sneeze in threes, and have since I was a child. It is obvious to me that we are born "hard-wired" (to some extent) to do and act in certain ways. I wonder how that works? Is it genetic? Is it a matter of how our brains grow and develop - caused by the random timing of how the cells divide and connect? Is it things accidentally learned in the womb as we grow, or because of the positions we adopted in utero? How are we wired for certain behaviors?

Since my niece was born, she pulls on her ear when she is tired. Every single time. It is completely unconscious behavior - she just does it absentmindedly. We have always known when she needs a nap because of it. She is now almost 3, and will probably do that her entire life. Micah sleeps on his side - he rolled to his side the very first night in his crib in the hospital - and has pretty much slept on his side every night since (he rolls back and sleeps on his back during the night, too, but he is clearly a side sleeper like his mommy, although he prefers his right side, and I prefer my left). When he needs some soothing and comforting, he sucks his thumb and uses his other hand to play with his hair. I'll bet he plays with his hair like that his whole life when he gets agitated or upset. Ironically, DH sort of scratches his head when he is agitated or upset, too.

My mother and I have many of the same mannerisms - I wonder how many of them are learned versus hard-wired? My grandfather used to sleep on his back with his one arm above his head. My father sleeps that way, too. I've noticed that when I sleep on my back, I also tend to put one arm above my head.

Have you ever noticed the hard-wiring in your life? Tell me about it!

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