The purpose of the developmental timeline assignment is to gain a deeper appreciation of the developmental changes that occur simultaneously in different domains across the lifespan and to reflect on your own developmental story. The timeline should represent developmental changes that have occurred in your life from your conception to your anticipated death as an elderly person. The timeline should reflect a variety of milestones in physical, cognitive, and social development. Wherever possible, you may include true details such as the age and form of your first word. Unknown details about development or extrapolating developmental milestones you have not reached should be filled in using the developmental norms discussed in class
Infancy and toddler hood
Early Child hood
Death and Dying
Entries of The Life I’ll call mine
By Sumari Y. Matthew
February 27, 1987
Sumari Yvonne Matthew 11: 45 am
Juanita Danielle Matthew 11:56 am
Me and my sissy juanita were what mommy said what the doctor called born premature. And since we were identical twins, we were born lighter than the other babies, I was 5 pounds and my sissy was 4 pounds. (Ironically, we, together, weighed a full baby!) when juani came out she was screaming and crying and before her I came out crying but less upset. ( I could not see the face of mommy and daddy and I didn’t notice that I had a sister. I do not remember the womb I came out of.)
Week 1and 2:
Fertilization and a little Zygote forms and divides.
But unlike a normal gestation, this little zygote breaks in to 2 different zygotes during division and not 1 but 2 blastocysts embed themselves to the uterine wall of MOMMY!!!
Week 3 and 4
To mommy’s surprise both embryos form (the ectoderm, mesoderm and the endoderm to be exact!). Also these “derms” form hearts lungs and gastrointestinal tract and even eyes!
More of our organs begin to take shape, like our limbs begin as buds and primitive facial features begin to appear. The hand plate which forms in to palms and fingers appear and our brains differentiates in to forebrain, midbrain, and hindbrain. Ovaries become apparent in both embryos. But the most important organ….the heart not only starts filling love to give to the world, but also divides to two regions.
Bone tissue begin to form and the 2 embryos are finally called fetuses! These fetuses can now open and close their mouths and fingers and toes are clearly visible. These fetuses now become soccer players of the fetal world and kick and move around in mommy’s tummy. And the hearts (are still filling up with love) re now audible for mommy and daddy to hear! Mommy would listen to lots of jazz and we would stop moving around.
Fingernails, teeth, hair and eyelashes OH MY ! – actually the begin to show up and the AGE OF VIABILITY dawns upon the 2 fetuses and the test of survival can happen at any moment. To mommy’s glee (total sarcasm) these fetuses gain weight. Also the nervous system and the brain become more organized, and the lungs begin to mature, expand and contract. Me and my sissy begin to interact by hitting each other and lying on one another.
Me and Juani had our first birthday and party with all of our family. Members from mommy’s side and daddy’s side. First we were shy and clinging to mommy and grandma and grandpa and even daddy because they were all that we knew. But once our other baby family (little cousins) came and wanted to see my toys I checked for mommy and I crawled to my toys. Juani on the other hand learned that day how to walk (all thanks to my cousin who stole her favorite keys). Also this year was the year me and juani began to talk to mommy and daddy and to each other, although it wasn’t what they understood they still knew what we were trying to say. This year was also the year of exploration! Mommy and daddy took me and sissy to meet the family in the Bahamas for the first time, and our Great Grandpa gave me the nickname “Mauby” and juani, “Neet”. And also to Martha’s Vineyard to see ships and family!
TALK ABOUT TERRIBLE TWOS ! ! Had our second birthday and this time mommy chose to have a clown come and make us happy. The clown was tall and had lots of colors and held lots of what daddy called balloons. ����� At this time I was able to walk even though my sissy was a pro and had all the attention from mommy and daddy for being the first! At this year me and juani started trying to put more symbols to words like our pacifier was a “babah” and what we ate was called food.
I begin ballet lessons with sissy and we also took them with our cousin Ajia. I also started pre-school at “Little Sun People” and saw new kids and made friends without juani. ( During this year I developed not only an understanding of daily separation from mommy and daddy but I also began to trust my teachers and made all 5 of them my secure bases went to explore the area around me.) I also learned to speak another language, the teachers called it Swahili and spoke it a lot with sissy.
I had my first ballet recital and saw, out of the all many people in the room, my grandpapi watching, smiling and clapping and screaming! And I did the best ballet moves out of all the girls! My speaking skills began to improve and I began to hold conversations with my mommy, daddy, grandma and grandpa. Juani was also improving but I was the first!! As I was in pre-school I began to have a little girl crush on one of the boys in my class named Tahu and the other girls in the class made because of it.
I started Kindergarten!!! This is the first time I am without juani for a whole day (im used to mommy and daddy coming and going at school). The class was very nice and I remember learning about our presidents and drawing family pictures. My first best friend was Amanda and Katlin, and we had our first play-date at Katelin’s house. This year was the year of my first musical concert which was Lenny Kravitz and I remember it being loud, dark and me standing on the seats to see a glimpse because everything was too tall. My Grandpa on my dad’s side went away and leave me and juani and grandma alone. Every weekend me and sissy took swimming classes with mommy.
- Year 6
The second Grandpa (on my mommy’s side) went to away leaving grandma alone. Also this year I realized that both of my grandpas are in heaven, and that God lives in heaven. I also have my first Sunday School Recital and I danced in it. I began the first grade and remember my teacher giving me and my friends star cookies during story time and she gave me 2 extra cookies because I read the story for the day. Me and Juani tried to dim the lights in the living room by putting mommy’s favorite scarves on the laps and they burned up!
- Year 7
I started second grade and by now I have realized that teachers are coming and going as I go to another grade and I no longer felt scared to start a new grade and be away from mommy. This year I was sent home one day early because I bumped really hard into a boy named Tomas Torres and had a swollen eye. This year I also traveled to Washington D.C to visit my aunt who I never see, or play with.
- Year 8
I began the third grade and my teacher’s name was Ms Lang. This was the first time me and my sister juani noticed more that we looked alike and so we switched classes and tried to fool the teachers (it work for 10 minutes). This year was the year of the Chicken Pox! Juani had it and passed it to me and I had exactly 12 bumps which itched sooooo bad!!
- Year 9
I had my first real crush, Karim, held my hand on our way back to school from a fieldtrip. This was the summer when we stayed with our grandma made us stay with her and by day we would study and do math and reading comprehension and by night go to bed early. As a result that year me and juani failed most of our classes and was in danger or being let back. This was also the year when me and juani got our first big kids bike and learned how to ride it with daddy.
I started the fourth grade and had my first bully, who was in the sixth grade and continued to repeat the sixth grade for the next 2 years. This year I also got into my first hitting fight with a girl at bible camp over listening to instructions. This Christmas Santa (what I know now to be my uncle) came, asked me what I wanted and gave me presents!
I started fifth grade and it was the year I spent my birthday at a Jazz concert which was long but definitely worth it and mommy and daddy were happy that we were happy! I am still in Ballet lessons but I also do after school sports like soccer and volleyball. This year I did my first real play, “Hamlet” By William Shakespeare with my teacher Ms Aaron as our director. I had a small role because I was afraid of the huge crowd and had trouble remembering the long lines other characters had.
I started the sixth grade and it was in a new school! I was very nervous, I had to make friends all over again and it felt like hard work. I went to Martha’s Vineyard this summer and JUMPED OFF A BRIGDE, which was so much fun! I started my period and I also went up a couple of bra sizes. The sixth grade for me became harder because this was the first of many years of taking reading comprehension and mathematical exams for the state.
These years I started the seven and the eighth grade respectively and at the end of my fourteenth year, had my junior high prom and then I began high school. This was new school, and even though my sister was still with me, we still have different classes and make very different friends. I become more extroverted and into social cliques. This year (age 14) I was hospitalized for passing a kidney stone and remember sharing a room with an adorable baby with pneumonia and looked so sad. This year I got my first job as a dentist receptionist. I took the Specialized High School exam to try to get in to Brooklyn Technical High School but was 120 points short. This year is also important because Sept. 11 happened on my 2 day of school (and I can remember the smell of the smoke reached my house).
These years I started learning Latin with a teacher that was so difficult, I later took the Nation Latin Proficiency exam and won the Silver medal along with 4 other people out of my entire grade that took the exam. At 16, I had a very unorthodox sweet 16. Instead of the huge party, we invited only 6 of our closest friends and watched non-stop scary movies and ate pizza!!! Had my first boyfriend!! I applied for Colleges at 17 and took the S.A.T’s (and didn’t get the grade I wanted and felt even more self conscious that every one else did). I also joined the girls bowling team in the fall of senior year. Had my first break up : (.
Years 18- 19
COLLEGE LIFE!!! Fled to Baton Rouge during Hurricane Katrina, which interrupts freshman year but staying at St. John’s made up for it ; ) I re-established old friendships with high school friends and they helped me deal with feeling displaced mentally and educationally. I convinced mom to use her treadmill and now I run every night! (Tyra Banks WATCH OUT!!).
Graduate College and begin working and saving up for Grad school. I start my oh so very serious relationship and begin Graduate School. Graduate grad. School with a high G.P.A and a smile and officially move out of the house, but keeping in touch with the parents. With the serious boyfriend (with a well paying job) and the new job, I begin a new independent life. After dating for 5 years we get married and in few months I become pregnant with our first child!! After the birth of our first child we decide to use authoritative parenting and develop a secure bond with him in his first 2 years. I lost my Grandmother and become a supportive daughter to my parents who try everyday to cope with the loss.
After my first child is a toddler we decide to have another (using the same parenting method and developing a secure bond with our children). I become aware of my roles as a mother, wife and daughter and the duties that come with them. To prevent sibling rivalry, me and my husband spend as much time with the new baby as with the eldest child and invited my sister and her kid to come over and develop a friendship bond with the kids. My parents and my In-laws come in and help me and My husband take care of the kids (and allow us to go on a much needed, romantic, relaxing vacation). I lost my other Grandmother and help my parents again cope every day with the loss.
Both children form full secure attachments with me and my husband as well with their Grandparents and other relatives. I help my first child has their first crush and deals with pressures of school. The second starts pre-school and elementary school and later learns the about the same pressure. Both learn the ideas and rules of the gender norms and learn more and more from school and home about sexuality. Me and My husband deal with the stresses of two kids and lack of alone time by meeting for lunch and spending alone time after our kids go to sleep. I started working out after my second child and gain back my self-esteem!!!
I lost an elder relative (an uncle) and take the loss hard. My husband and my sister provide me with the support I need for the year following the death and I make a full return. My last child leaves for college and the true feelings for “empty nest” hits hard. When I dropped off my child at their dorm and cried on the ride home; I now call him every weekend. I begin menopause at 52 and go to the doctor to find ways deal with the symptoms Doctor tells me that I have high blood pressure and begin to walk in the morning and change my diet to all foods without vitamin K (a coagulate) to thin my blood. After the last child leaves the house, with the free time, I began to re-establish full-time friendships with old friends. My husband and I find ways to spend more time together by traveling and taking days off at work. My first child is married and starts a family with twins!!
I stay mentally active by trying crossword puzzles everyday and play chess with the seniors at my church every Sunday afternoons. I lost both parents five years apart from one another and my husband and my children and grandchildren act as my support group and help me through my morning which lasted about 1 year for my mother and about 7 months for my father. One day at home I showed symptoms of a heart attack which was a head ache, and a major pain on my left arm. The doctor said it was a false alarm. The day after the false alarm, I changed my diet and joined the local gym from around the corner. After the death of one of my best friends, my other friends and I hold a movie date and dinner with my surviving best friends with my sister every Friday night to catch up and remain close and supportive. Both children and husband surprise me with a mother’s day barbeque and party with all my children, and grandchildren.
I began to forget important dates like the date and time of the birth of my first grandchild but remember where the hospital is. I have trouble with my short-term memory. I forgot the grocery list and parking areas so often my eldest child bought me a mini tape recorder to record these little things. My hip began to pain me and the doctor said that it had acutely fractured while I was doing my normal daily routines. After that check up – weeks later found it more painful to walk and continue my daily routines (morning walks, shopping and driving) and received surgery ultimately fixing the fracture and the fracture and keeping me from driving for 6 months. I personally began to draw my sister back into my life , since after our parents parents died, and we were left alone. Went to my grandchildren’s (from first child) high school graduation and made sure they both were well placed and secure in their schools along with their parents, my child and their spouse.
I began to lose my long-term memory. I was unable recollect memories that I shared with my husband (who died when I was 80) and memories of miles stones of my children. I lost the capability to complete tasks even daily routines due to forgetfulness. I lost my husband and began to rely on my children and their spouses for moral support and physical help. I also watch my grand children (from my second child) every Monday through Friday after their school. As I turned 83 it became hard to walk long distances but despite the trials I was still able to do morning walks just at a shorter distance and a slower pace to stay active. My children then put me in a hospice, at age 83, as my ailments begin to cause me greater problems. And they visit me for the next 4 years.
In her home in Arizona.