I've posted the trailer for your enjoyment:
Aside from being ridiculously cute, and leaving me with that warm fuzzy feeling that any human with a soul gets from being around a baby, the film sparked a few observations for me.
First observation: I did not ever think, "Awwww, I want another one!" Blessedly, my maternal urges have topped out at four.
Second observation: After watching the babies from Africa and Mongolia, parenting in the U.S. (and Japan for that matter, where the fourth baby is from) felt a little contrived. For the African and Mongolian baby, nature, animals, other children were the main focus of their play. In Japan and the U.S. most of the babies' sensory needs were satisfied with store-bought toys and "baby classes." Is there a lesson here for our culture that is battling a childhood obesity epidemic?
Third observation: With a baby, there's a fine line between safety and freedom. There were so many instances in the scenes from Mongolia and Africa where I audibly muttered: Oh my God... because if had I been standing right there I would have rushed in and swooped up the babe from whatever danger I perceived. But their mamas didn't and oh, you could see the joy in those babies faces from whatever newness they experienced or the satisfaction in their accomplishment. It's the kind of confidence all parents want for their children, but I saw how clearly I can't "give" that to my children. They absolutely must experience it through their own freedom.
In the end, regardless of how different these four babies' lives were in that first year, they all seem so happy, so loved. And so, ultimately I am left with this, my fourth observation: whatever we do as mothers is enough. We all do what we know, what we instinctively believe to be right, and that is our best, and that is enough.
Still, extra kudos to that mom in Africa who wipes her baby's poopy bottom with her knee and then scrubs her knee clean with a corn cob. I am nothing but humbled.