The human development consists stages of transformations in
an individual throughout their lifespan, the distinct physical difference in
growth of physical body reaching to up to the prime phase of physical
development and afterward disintegrating gradually till death, and the
advancement of cognitive ability during several distinctive physical stages.
Furthermore, the human development incorporates a change in various aspects of
life in physical, emotional, cognitive, spiritual, etc. The human development is
an ongoing subject of study; several theories have been proposed in the past,
many systematic and scientific research has been taking place lately to
understand the changes in human life from conception to death correctly.
Developmental science attempts to understand the lifespan
development, in general, the changes in human behavior, for example, the
changes in apparent physical activities and mental activities throughout the
lifespan (from conception to death) utilizing a variety of scientific tools intending
to get unbiased data (Broderick and Blewitt, 2015). Moreover, during a course
of life, an individual undergoes through several modifications due to external
factors applied in upbringing, such as values, principles, relationships,
ideas, opinions, perspective, feelings, faith, etc. In this analytical writing
on an investigation of the developmental analysis of myself, I will endeavor to
cover the phases of personal development, such as prenatal, infancy,
toddlerhood, preschool, middle childhood, and adolescence stages. In it, I have
essayed assembling as much as erudition of myself from various sources like my
parents, siblings, neighbors, and childhood friends.
fetal period of prenatal development starts on the last day of the eighth week
after fertilization and continues until birth. Prenatal advancement takes place
in three distinct stages; germinal period, embryonic period; and fetal period
(Stiles & Jernigan, 2010, p.327). During the early growth of the fetus, it
is vulnerable to toxins and other environmental abnormalities. For example,
mother’s exposures to teratogens or nutritional deficiencies will most likely
cause physiological deformations. Numerous extensive research has affirmed that
consuming alcohol excessively during pregnancy can have deleterious physical
and psychological effects on the developing fetus, lasting teratogenic effect,
causing an adverse impact on the developing embryo known as Fetal Alcohol
Spectrum Disorder (FASD) (Martin & Dombrowski, 2008). And, the nourishment
is also a vital, influential environmental factor that modifies the expression
of the fetal genome and may have lifelong results (Monk et.all; 2013).
According to several recent research, the substance abuse, for example,
excessive use of alcohol may develop teratogenic effect, causing not only an
adverse impact FASD, moreover, impact on the development of the infant’s cells,
mainly affecting the cerebrum and spinal cord cells (Martin & Dombrowski,
2008). But, the teratogenic effect on the developing fetus ranges from moderate
to extreme depending on the measure of consumption causing lasting physical or
According to my mother, she used to drink heavily, and
nutritional food intake was very poor due to poverty when she was pregnant with
me. I am so thankful that there is no signs and symptoms of teratogenic effects
on me, though it was highly possible. There was no health center, hospital
facility, healthcare professionals in the town by the time I born. So health
education, nutritional education, and prenatal care during pregnancy were also
not available. I am grateful for not finding any single physical and
intellectual teratogenic consequences on me, however, there were millions of
reasonable scientific grounds for it. Therefore, I feel the urge to confess
gratitude to God who created me, give thanks to God who watched over me, who
had assured to take care of me, beforehand formed in my mother’s womb. Honestly
convinced that His word is trustworthy, “For You formed my inward parts; You
wove me in my mother’s womb”. Another interesting fact, I have no record of any
official data, for instance, date and time of birth and weight since they had
no written calendar. The date of birth I have been using now is later given to me.
According to Freud’s Theory of Psychosexual Stages,
Children who have issues at any stages will have effects later in adult life. A
child weaned too early or too late will experience oral deprivation or
overindulgence which is called oral fixation, resulting in noticeable oral
activities, for example eating, drinking, smoking, chewing, smoking, etc.
(Broderick and Blewitt, 2015. P. 10). To some extend, I discovered his theory
is appropriate in my own life. As indicated by my parents, I couldn’t get enough
nourishment and milk during infancy, my mouth used to be active with no sign of
satisfaction of oral pleasure. I can relate this to Freud’s theory of oral
fixation, might have developed it. Hence, I find myself seeking oral pleasure
by indulging into overeating or being talkative.
The age around three and five is considered as the
preschool stage. At this period, a toddler develops motor ability, allowing
physical activities such as walking, running, kicking and throwing a ball,
standing on one foot, skipping, climbing, and so on. Additionally, at this
period, a baby gains cognitive capabilities, enabling to learn alphabets and
also drawing geometric shapes. As a result, by age 3, a child is ready to
attend formal preschool mastering settings. It is a pre-operational level; a
baby advances so much in his/her physical capabilities, cognitive capacity and
additionally ends up more and more skilled at using symbols, including the
increase in pretending play. According to brain research conducted over the
previous decade, learning in the early years is critical to a child’s lifelong
advancement, and the neurological pathways children will later use for
everything from coloring to calculus is constructed in preschool age. (Burlacu,
2013). According to another research on Development of cognitive
capacities in preschool age, a child development requires the finding the tools
and mastering in their activities, as a result producing abilities which have
an impact that lasts for life (Veraksa, 2011). Although it’s milestone period
for every single child, I had neither opportunity for formal preschool nor any
educational play activities. I started my school at age five, the
opportunity for learning in a whole first year was reading and writing the Nepali
and English alphabet, and being able to count and write 1 to 100 numbers.
According to John Piaget’s theory, a child advances towards
maturation experiencing similar biological and environmental interaction.
In his theory for a child to achieve the healthy cognitive improvement, a
child out to be taught age-appropriate ideas and education, so completion of
every single stage is crucial. If a child who misses any developmental
stages, some may never succeed the later stages (Broderick and Blewitt, 2015. P.
10). Thinking back to my pre-school age and applying Piaget’s theory, I can
relate my learning development and agree with theory to some extend. I missed
pre-school age academic opportunity, which could give me cognitive improvement.
Missing pre-school age educational improvement, I always felt so tested my
later phases of cognitive advancement.
Middle Childhood and Adolescence age
Leaving home to fulfill our thirst for knowledge and
enthusiasm for the world outside the door. As a ten-year-old, I couldn’t go to
school in our village since there wasn’t a middle school available in our house
radius. When my parents mentioned that I would be living in a dorm in a distant
school, many emotions started to bottle up. However, for my mother permitting
her son leave was unbearable, but her face showed valiance to support her son’s
future. I left home with my brother expecting a productive school year.
I lived with my elder brother and other students in the
rented house. I have never forgotten walking 8 hours under the blistering
heat of the sun on my first day to arrive at school for enrollment with a foot
filled with blisters from stubbing my toes. I made friends and dozens of very
close friends from different parts of Nepal who came to this school for study as
well. Our daily routine was simple such as going to school, preparing meals, do
homework, study and play to our heart’s content together. We did outdoor
activities such as playing every single game you could imagine, fishing,
playing marbles, chasing monkey in the forest, running in the woods was such
adventurous and memorable social activities I have ever experienced for many
years. We built such friendship bond among that we still have our significant
relationship in all these years, it does not affect us even though we are
worlds apart. Bowlby’s evolutionary theory of attachment is somewhat convincing
and can be related to my circumstances. As indicated by Bowlby’s theory of
attachment, an attachment gradually transfers from parents to peers and, eventually,
to romantic partners, providing a haven for the secure base for functioning
(Broderick and Blewitt, 2015. P. 40). Analyzing through the eyes of Bowlby’s
theory, though I had the moment of separation distress when leaving home at the
young age, finding the opportunities to live with the same age peers filled the
void and found myself secured and satisfied.
search for a sense of self and personal identity, through an intense
exploration of personal values, beliefs, and goals. The mind of adolescent goes
through a psychosocial stage learning a morality and developing ethics
(Erikson, 1963, p. 245). Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development
emphasizing a child learning to trust or mistrust caregivers at early age
(Broderick, 2014) and growth of faith is somewhat sensible in my view. During
my middle school and high school, I was living with Hindu and Buddhist friends,
only couples of us were Christian among thousands of students. Since I was
engaged in such religious exercises during my early growth stages of faith
framed a deep-felt and individual spiritual life, and social pattern that I
stick to my parents’ religions and Christian principle, though I was tested so
much living among the children who practiced other faith and had a much different
Challenges and Success
Observing through the lenses of several
developmental theories, I discovered that my life has gone through millions of
obstacles to come this far in the developmental sense. Indeed, our life matures
going through all sorts of experiences, some days feeling a failure and other
days accomplished. We all keep moving forward experiencing expected and
unexpected circumstances, learning and experiencing new ideas and knowledge; we
should not stop until the death. It is true that proper guidance and age
appropriate opportunities in life contribute highly to grow as a healthy
person, but not all are fortunate to get such care and environment. I can
fairly state that I grew up obviously well with the right guidance my parents
have bestowed on me, though I had so much other challenges due to their
economic hardship and educational depravity. I am so positive about my past and
present because I happily apply God’s living Word in my life, “Rejoice always;
pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you
in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18) in every circumstance I go through.
Broderick, P. & Blewitt, P. (2015). The Life Span:
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Burlacu, F. (2013). THE IMPORTANCE OF PRE-SCHOOL EDUCATION
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Kendra Cherry | Reviewed by Steven Gans, MD. (n.d.).
Preoperational Stage of Cognitive Development in Young Children. Retrieved
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