Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Human Guinea Pigs

Scenes of Naomi and Maya yesterday

Living in an University town, we are often approached to do research studies. Yesterday Naomi was approached by the School of Nursing to do a study involving unusual deliveries. What was unusual in their eyes? Pushing less than 30 minutes for a first time mom (actually she pushed for about 5 minutes). It involves having 3 MRIs netting her $360. She ended up not doing the other study during birth as she didn't know who she was supposed to contact

 I had Shanna do several studies as a baby. One was testing the vision of 2 month olds. How do they do that? Turns out babies would rather look at a pattern rather than a blank sheet. The babies were given 2 sheets to look at: most of the time, they'd turn their heads to the pattern. The lines of the pattern became tinier and tinier and looked like a blank sheet. At the point they wouldn't look at the patterned sheet, they assumed that was their visual acuity. Hers was 20/600, typical of a baby her age and similar to what she is now without contacts.

Another was on self-image. At what age do babies realize that image in the mirror is actually them?  She was 12 months for this one. Somehow they snuck a red dot onto the middle of her forehead. If she was observed looking in the mirror and then becoming visibly puzzled by the red dot (as evidenced by grabbing for it), then they knew she knew it was herself she was looking at and something was wrong. Why is that red dot on my forehead? She reached for her forehead so she did recognize herself and knew something was amiss.

Animals never seem to recognize themselves. One of my thankless jobs as a child was carrying around a mirror made of a board covered with foil. I was to put it in front of a male peacock who would interpret the image as a threat and then display his feathers while my father took his photo. My father had a sideline as a stock photographer.

For once, it wasn't raining on soccer night so I watched the guys (and the lone lady) play. It was a rout: Josh's buddy alone scored a double hat trick. I ran this morning in the oppressive humidity. Hopefully it will rain later as the yard needs it. Back to trying to straighten out insurance issues, our full-time job. Naomi and May came today. Maya has more alert periods now and is quite a bit chunkier. She slept for a record 6 hours last night.

1 comment:

Sara Williams said...

Hey Sue,
I haven't been blogging much recently so sorry I havent stopped by. Niaomi and Maya look great. Congratulations x

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