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What is the meaning of life?

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Baby Babble

By: Ashley Hoppe   |   December 2, 2022

Lately, I’ve been feeling a bit retrospective. Maybe it’s the fact that apparently this thing called a year is coming to an end, maybe it's the fact that it’s been raining quite a bit or maybe it’s the fact that my parents keep talking about what they have accomplished this year and if they want to change their goals. Or maybe it’s because I decided to change my favorite stuffie from bear to elephant and I’m not quite sure why. Regardless of the reason, my days are now filled with me pondering what the meaning of life is.

I’ve recently started standing up. I grab on to whatever is closest to me and hoist myself up into a standing position. I can stand for hours as long as I am holding on to something. When I'm standing I feel like I'm part of something. I look around at the grown ups and they are standing, on walks I look outside my stroller and everyone is standing and walking. Everyone looks so excited. When I'm standing I feel like I can do anything and see everything, it’s such an exciting feeling that I have. Is standing the meaning of life? It’s quite possible. But I don’t know for sure. But I do know that it could be. 

I have also started eating puffs and teething crackers. My mom was a little hesitant, though I'm not sure why, since she would feed me food that the grownups eat such as veggies and meat. I like those foods, and I especially like raspberries. However, when I get my hands around a teething puff and pop it into my mouth, wow, I feel like I could run the world. I suck on it, pushing it around in the mouth until it dissolves. Sometimes I get the ones that have a peanut butter flavoring, and sometimes I get the ones that are made out of different veggies. Regardless, eating these items makes me feel on top of the world. I am so excited that I am becoming a big boy and can do things for myself that grown ups can do. So, perhaps eating puffs is the meaning of life. 

As I sit here reflecting on my short time so far, I also think about one of my other favorite activities at the moment. I love banging my hands on things, such as the table, or the chair, or the tray on my high chair. I especially love when there is water on my tray and I can bang my hands on it making the water fly everywhere. It’s so much fun that whenever I do it it causes me to laugh and smile very large. I have such a good time banging my hands. Another special place I like to bang my hands is the mirror or a glass door. I can see another baby on the other side and he also is banging his hands right up against mine, which makes it seem like a high five, like the ones my parents give me. Maybe banging my hands is the meaning of life.

There’s one more meaning of life I would be amiss if I didn’t mention here. I love cuddling. I love cuddling with my mom, and I love cuddling with my dad. I also love cuddling with my stuffed animal beary. I’ve begun to feel a little uneasy when my parents aren’t around. I am never sure if they are coming back. Even when they go to the bathroom, I get nervous. I’ve heard my mom say something about this, that it is something called separation anxiety. I am not sure what anxiety is, but if it’s what I feel, then I know it isn’t fun. I only feel better when I can see them both again. Sometimes beary makes me feel a little better when I don’t see them. When I do see them again though, after they maybe went to the bathroom or maybe into another room, I reach my arms up to them. I smile up at them and, when one of them picks me up, I rub my face onto them and touch their face. It’s called cuddling. It is definitely my favorite thing in the whole world. Perhaps cuddling is the meaning of life.

The more I think about it, the more I’m convinced my last thought is true. Maybe the meaning of life is to cuddle with those you care about. My parents are my best friends in the whole world, and I feel full when I’m with them, especially when I am hugging them or being held by them. If I were a betting boy, I would say the meaning of life is to be with the ones you love. 

Ashley Hoppe lives in Novato with her husband Brett and their son Jackson. You can find her hiking or trying a new coffee shop. She’d be delighted to hear from you at
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