Pardon my absence, I was getting a little Petered-out (no offense, Pete). Plus, Parenting takes a lot of time, and Perhaps my emPloyment had something to do with it.
I got the clever idea this morning to pick relevant music from my collection as I'm writing, this morning, it's Prince, a life-long favorite. Maybe because Purple Rain was all the rage when I started listening to music, and he's so damn talented that I can still listen to it as adult, and appreciate it differently. I heard that he can play professionally on 12 instruments. I don't know if that was an exaggeration, but he often played all the parts on his albums, and had his bands for the live shows.
What I settled on for “P” was Paradigm. While it's official definition is “a pattern or model,” it became something of a 'Buzz Word' denoting a perspective, as in “we've got to get a new paradigm to reach this audience.” I guess that the definitions are compatible, and maybe even a development of the original intent; it's a great step forward for a person to recognize the Paterns that their thinking follows, then evaluate whether they are appropriate or not.
Cultural paradigms are really obvious in parenting books – what was considered appropriate fifty years ago seems ludicrous today. Many of us know someone who let an infant suck whiskey off their finger to ease teething. Another example is running to sooth a crying infant. Some say that they need to learn security & confidence, and know that parents are there for them in times of trouble. At other times, it's taught that they need to cry it out, and learn independence. Problem is, they can't tell us when they're lonely, or if a rash is making them cranky, and none of us remember what it's like to be alone in a huge, dark room, with no context. What's it like to know that some thing's wrong, but you have no language to tell others what it is, or no frame of reference to know yourself? Experts have always tried to know what baby's are thinking, and are doing their best, I'm sure, but have their own cultural paradigms filtering their research.
Learning about paradigms & filters really helped me see what's a reflection of my particular time and place in the world. And with parenting in particular, I try to mix research with instinct.