We can all agree that the development of a baby from a tiny fertilized egg, to a complicated biological being is an absolute miracle. However, I’ve got a few bones to pick with Mother Nature on some of the finer points of baby growth and development, from fetus to older baby.
Sometimes I just want to ask Mother Nature, “WTF were you thinking?” For example, I personally want to understand why women pee and copulate utilizing the same orifice, out of which we birth babies?
And, please explain to me why you put our breathing apparatus in the same ballpark as our feeding tube? Did you want us to choke to death? Is that all part of your master plan for population control?
And pooping…does it really have to be quite so disgusting? Couldn’t you have just devised a little compartment, say, down by our ankle, where we could just open a little hatch and clear our bodies of waste?
Some of the decisions the great Mother has made with regards to babies are pure genius. All those awesome survival reflexes, and I get the crying—babies are telling us to take care of them—but some of these facts about babies and their development just really seem a little WTF, to me. If I were Mother of all Earth, I might have done some of these things a little differently. Not questioning your effort, dear, just the overall design. Here are 15 WTF baby facts that you probably didn't know, and might just scratch your head over.
15 Babies Eat WHAT In The Womb?
Babies have it pretty rough in the womb. Everyone says that they like it in there, all warm and cozy, soothed by mom's beating heartbeat, but I'm a little skeptical over here. It seems a little close quarters in there to me, especially towards the end, and babies are forced to not only listen to mom's heartbeat, but also her bowels gurgling, and other bodily functions. When I learned about what babies eat in the womb, I became convinced it's not a fun experience, and no one can convince me otherwise. It sure is a good thing we can't remember. Turns out, babies eat hair from their own bodies called lanugo. Lanugo is a fine hair that covers babies' bodies, protecting their delicate skin while in utero. I've always felt sorry for cats and their hairballs, but turns out we humans have to eat a little hair as well. If that wasn't bad enough, babies also drink their own urine. 'Cheers. I'll drink to that.'
14 Babies Can Taste The Rainbow
It just doesn't seem right that babies, like dogs, only get to eat one thing for such a long time. Food is one of life’s great pleasures! Can you imagine going through your day, and all you got to eat all the time was milk? I like milk as much as the next person, in my cereal anyway, but milk all day, every day? Seems like it would get a bit old. It also seems a particular waste of all the taste buds babies are born with. Apparently, they have taste buds on their tonsils, on the roof, sides, and the back of the mouth, in addition to their tongue. Ever wondered if maybe babies lose all those taste buds because they are drinking the same thing for six months? Maybe the body decided it doesn't need those taste buds after all, and that’s why they go away. Just a thought.
13 Girl Babies Have Mini Periods At Birth
Oh cruel, cruel world. Say it isn't so. Mother Nature, why have you done such horrible things to women? Now I am to learn that female newborns can't even escape the dreaded menstrual cycle. I love being a woman, but sometimes I wonder what it would be like if I'd been born a man...When newborn girls are born, they often harbor much of their mother's hormones, namely estrogen. If a woman's estrogen levels rise dramatically, the surge can actually stimulate the female fetus's uterus, causing her to have a mini period at birth. These are the hormones that tell the uterus to shed its lining. So moms, if you find a little blood in your newborn’s diaper, it’s probably not cause for alarm. It is cause for you to rail against the injustice of the world, and toss out a couple of “WTFs?” Mother Nature, WTF were you thinking?
12 Baby Boys Get Stiffies, Both Inside The Womb And At Birth
We mothers surely don't like to think of our baby boys eventually having sex. At this point, my son is innocent and doesn't know what sex is, but when he gets older, I will probably walk through life in denial of my son ever doing anything sexual, because: "NO! That's my baby boy!" Sadly, he will get older and—gulp—become aroused. The one thing I didn't expect was that fetuses’ have apparently been studied masturbating in utero. So it begins even before they are born, eh? That actually explains a lot.
Many baby boys will have erections while in the womb, as well as when they are born. The penis is also particularly large at birth due to birth hormones. So moms, don’t be at all surprised if your son greets you with a salute upon meeting you for the first time. He can’t help it. It’s a guy thing.
11 Newborns Are Fake Criers
Everyone knows that newborns cry to communicate. It’s one of the first things they do when the doctor pulls them from their mother’s body, but have you ever noticed that they don't cry actual tears? That's because newborns' tear ducts are not fully formed yet, and won't be for several weeks. So essentially, they are just screaming with style. Or faking. Their tear ducts can also be clogged with amniotic fluid for a while, and this can also result in an inability to produce tears. Somehow, they do produce enough moisture to keep their eyes wet and healthy, though. I also have another theory. Maybe they don't cry actual tears in the beginning, because they haven't realized yet that those pearly drops will have their mammas running to the rescue. Once they understand the usefulness of tears, they will start popping out those heartstring-tuggers every time. I know what you're thinking: Babies can't manipulate at such a young age. Or can they? Muah-ha-ha....
10 Babies Can Breath And Swallow, At The Same Time
According to some, a newborn baby's pharynx is not fully developed at birth, making it possible for him to breathe and drink at the same time. Basically, there is a hatch at the back of the human's throat, which closes when we swallow, so that food doesn't 'go down the wrong tube'. That hatch is not fully functioning at birth, making it possible for newborn babies to breath and drink at the same time. It's probably not a good thing that they can do this, because the hatch is designed to close so that we won't choke on our food. Still, if I were designing the human, I wouldn't have put those two 'tubes' so close together. Not a brilliant idea, if you ask me. Still, the process works okay, most of the time. But, it is pretty freaky that babies can eat and breathe at the same time. Little weirdoes.
9 Babies Have Big A** Heads
We often admire babies with their big heads and eyes. It’s probably part of the reason we find them so adorable. But why do babies have such large heads? It's no surprise that humans have large brains, especially in comparison to other 'intelligent' mammals on the planet. In fact, we have the largest brains in the animal world with comparison to body size. That means we need a pretty big head to accommodate all that brain. Babies’ heads develop quickly, much quicker than other parts of the body. This is also why their heads can be so disproportionate to their body size—the body hasn't had a chance to catch up. Probably explains why babies don't walk for the first year of their life. Ever tried standing up a bobble-head doll? Not an easy thing to do. Eventually, our bodies will grow to be in proportion to our head size by the time we become adults, but it might take a while.
8 Babies' Foot Size Does, In Fact, Tell You Something
Newborns grow at such a rapid rate that it is often astounding. Those newborn clothes can be too small within the first two or three weeks home. Sometimes, babies won't even get to wear certain outfits, because they grew so quickly, the clothes are wasted. The feet are no different. Feet grow the fastest within the first year of baby's life. They also hold some interesting facts. When babies reach one year in age, their feet are considered to be about half of their adult size. If you were to measure your child's foot and multiply it by two, you can get a pretty accurate assessment of baby's eventual adult size. In that way, the size of your little one's feet can give you some useful information. Doctor's have also found correlations between baby's size and length, and their eventual weight and height. This is not a perfect assessment, but it can be a pretty good indicator.
7 Baby's Diaper Changes Add Up
Stats can be fun sometimes, especially when you are adding up all the ways your kid owes you for life. We give our children tons of our time, as we should, but there are some things that we don't really want to waste our precious time on. Diaper changes would be top on my list of least fun things to spend my time on. Not to mention the cost of diapers is absolutely outrageous. There are some fine people who crunch numbers for us curious folks who suck at math, and they have determined the amount of time parents spend changing diapers. For one child, assuming the child is potty trained by age three, the moments parents will spend changing diapers will add up to an average of 27 days of their life. They will also spend around $4500.00 on diapers. Again, that is for only one child. Have more than one? The stats would boggle the mind.
6 Babies Are A Bit Selfish In The Womb
When babies are born, they become our whole world. We moms sacrifice everything for them: our time, our energy, and especially our health. We often even forget to eat—we are so busy caring for them, that we neglect our own health and nutrition. Well, surprise, surprise, babies’ needs take precedence over moms from conception. They eat first after they are born, and they eat first when in the womb. Fetuses take all the nutrients mom consumes, and they only leave her the leftovers. This seems a bit selfish, babies. No wonder pregnant women are so exhausted, often physically ill, and just out of sorts. We aren't likely getting all the nutrients we need. This is where prenatal pills come in, as well as eating as healthy as you possibly can. Baby is going to take all the good stuff, and unless you eat well, then there will be nothing left over for you!
5 Want Twins? Eat Yams.
I have always found twins particularly fascinating. Something about two people being born together, growing up together, and having many of the exact same life experiences is interesting. What makes them unique? How can two people be so similar, and yet grow to become so different? And don't even get me started on identical twins or multiples. They may as well have alien antennas, because I stare at them like they are from outer space. Well, if you are a mother who wants to have twins, food consumption seems to actually be a factor in conceiving multiples. There have been studies conducted from different parts of the world, with different areas having a much higher probability of producing twins. Diet seems to be an important factor. For example: a tribe in Africa whose members eat a large amount of yams, have the highest odds of twins and multiples in the world.
4 Boy Births Outnumber Girl Births
We’ve all gone through the wondering stage of what sex we will give birth to, boy or girl. Some of us want one over the other, and some of us don’t care. Supposedly, the odds of having a girl or a boy are about 50/50. Why then, are there 105 boys born, to every 100 girls born? Where did those five girl babies go? Stolen for government research? Stranger Things, anyone? There are a few theories on why this is so, though no one seems to know for sure. One theory is that males are less likely to survive infancy than females, and their slightly higher birth rates is Mother Nature's way of compensating. Another theory says that Y sperm have a slight speed advantage over X sperm, resulting in the slight increase in male births over female births. Either way, it's a strange phenomenon and it leaves some bachelors out in the cold, left without a matching female.
3 Babies Cry With Accents
All babies are different right from the start. They look different, they come in different sizes and shapes, and parents can quickly find their baby in a room full of babies. They even communicate differently. They cry at different sound levels, and they all sound distinctive. Have you ever been able to tell it was your baby crying, two rooms away? Between my own two children, I had one baby who was more of a quiet whimperer, and the other was an all-out wailer. Well, it turns out that babies can hear quite well while still in the womb. They actually pick up on the sounds, rhythms, cadences and accents of their parents’ voices. French babies cry with French accents, English babies cry with an English accent, and American babies cry with American accents. There was at least one study done in which the participants could actually tell which nationality babies were, based on their cries and gurgles. WTF?
2 Babies Have Big Eyes
We all love to admire that big-eyed baby. They are so cute, and we can spend all day drowning in those orbs of adorableness. Studies have been done that show adults find babies with big eyes particularly attractive. There is even a theory that babies are born with such large eyes in order to make their parents fall in love with them and want to take care of them. Seems like a reasonable theory when you think about it. Why are babies’ eyes so big? No one seems to be sure about why, but the truth is clear: their eyes are about 75% of their adult size. That's pretty huge, considering the tiny size of babies when they are born. The development of babies’ eyesight is pretty fascinating as well. Their eyesight continues to develop until they are between 3-5 years old. That's a long time for babies' eyes to change.
1 May Babies Are The Heaviest
Everyone loves a chubby baby. They are so cute and cuddly, and we all love to squeeze their little rolls, and pinch those chubby cheeks. Gently, of course, we're not monsters. Sometimes women give birth to big babies, and there is no discernable reason why. I've seen some tiny women give birth to some very chubby babies. One wonders what causes some babies to be so big, and others so small, even when they come from the same mother. We may never know for sure. Once thing science has discovered is that babies born in the month of May seem to weigh more than babies born at any other time of the year. I would like to think this has something to do with the earths orbit, distance from the sun, or some such seasonal phenomenon. But, they haven't yet figured out why this is so. If you are having a baby due in May, expect your little one to be bigger than you thought.