Molly Mathews

My name is Molly. I have been married for 5 years and have two children. A 10 year old step-son, a 2 year old daughter and I am currently 26 weeks pregnant with a boy! I live in the town I grew up in and have a large family that I see often. We all live close to each other right now and I hope it stays that way as we draw a lot of support from one another. I have been a nurse for 6 years, mostly in the emergency department, and I love my job. Since young childhood I dreamed of being a nurse and a mom and here I am both! I couldn't have imagined how difficult the journey would be but neither could I have fathomed the Joy that would come from both. Becoming a mom has made me into a better person in many ways and a bit of a crazy worry wart in other ways! Having support from other moms who have been there before or are there with you makes all the difference in the world!


The Ugly Lamp

The lamp and poster in the living room. Don't let the picture fool you - the lamp is much uglier in person.

You may not know this, but babies have very poor sight at birth.  Typically, they can only clearly see objects closer than about eight to fifteen inches away.  They can’t yet see colors and can only see contrasts.  That’s why newborns are so engaged by black and white images like checkerboards.  Over the next month or so, they develop the ability to track or follow items as they move across their range of vision.  By about four months of age, babies can start differentiating colors.

My senior year of college, I purchased two floor lamps at Wal-Mart.  Even then, I knew they were fairly ugly things – plain black lamps with some sweet shiny brass/gold accents.  On my student’s budget though, I couldn’t afford anything nicer, and since they are functional and paid for, they’ve been following me around through the six moves I’ve had in the ten years since then.

At least one of these lamps has always been in our living room since Chad and I were married six years ago.  For whatever reason, one has almost always been in the corner of whatever couches we owned at the time.  We’ve also had the same picture hanging over our couch our entire married life, a poster I purchased back in college as well.  One of these days we’ll get around to changing things up.

Traditionally, babies first start tracking their mothers, since they are supposed to like watching us more than anything else.  Not my babies.  The first object that Nathan, Emily, and Joshua all tracked was my ugly lamp.  They would stare fixedly at that lamp as we walked around the living room.  Mom?  Not so much.  The poster hanging over our couch has also been studied at length by all three kids.  Dad?  Sometimes he’s a stranger to them.

A while ago I was thinking about finally upgrading lamps, thinking ten years with ugly lamps had been long enough.  Chad pointed out, however, how essential those lamps have been to the development of our children’s eyesight.  And so one of those lamps remains in our living room, standing next to its friend the poster.

What objects did your child first track?

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2 Comments on “The Ugly Lamp”

  • Heidi September 12th, 2010 9:22 pm

    And yes….when you finally do replace them…you will have to make some type of modern art object with them for future Reese babies to be entertained by!! Loved this post – it made me smile!

  • Brynn Reese September 13th, 2010 9:49 pm

    Thanks! Maybe I’ll just get some black and white photography instead :)

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