It is almost a month since you were born. We have taken many pictures of your progress, and it is a joy to watch you grow day by daily.

I imagine that you have what must be the opposite of Alzheimer’s: the gradual acquisition of memory and a constant state of impermeable confusion, rolling over your consciousness like waves, which leave just a little more sand on the beach than they take away with each thundering tow. Your eyes are developing, and your neck is nearly strong enough to turn your head at will; but you are utterly helpless. I marvel at your weakness, because it seems to speak to our species as a whole.

There are no lesser animals, but there are animals less complex (perhaps) than our species, animals whose young are nearly ready to defend themselves upon departure from the womb. You are not. Like the panda, we must raise our young with absolute dedication or they will die. That we have selected to so evolve as a species seems significant. Certainly, it is a testament to our social nature. We live or die upon our ability to interact socially. That we should have incorporated this social dependence into childbirth is interesting. Interesting, if only to me. I do not pretend to own some greater understanding of this little mystery; but the panda and the polar bear raise their children alone. Dolphins, it is true, socially converge as do a vast array of apes and monkeys. We are certainly not unique in this regard; but it might be described as a feature of the “more evolved”–whatever that might mean.

All that aside, it is a joy to watch you grow.