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A Filthy Topic

Poopin'I realize this can be a sensitive subject for some, and so, as a courtesy to those who may stumble upon this post, or for regular readership, please be aware that the following post is pretty much solely related to poop.  You have been warned.

It’s cliche, to be sure, but one of the first things that new parents must adjust to is not only the sudden and inescapable fact of being both aware of when your child poops as well as being responsible for the cleanup process (a process that we, as adults, pretty much feel is an “individual responsibility,”) but also beginning to regard lengthy conversations about the frequency, volume and pallor of these “movements” as ordinary topics to be discussed freely.  My wife and I, for example, frequently discuss the “nitty-gritty” (no pun intend) of Justine’s “doings” (sorry), more often than not at the dinner table.

It was never like this before we had children.  Bathroom discussions were, for the most part, strictly limited to the occasional discussion of how awesome it is that men can pee standing up, and how women have have been punished for Eve’s apple-eatin’ ways by being forced to stand in lines several dozen deep at sporting events.  But now, I can’t help but observe and analyze the nuances of my daughter’s early experiences in bowel mastery, and discuss them in frank, no holds barred conversations with my wife and other parents I know.

I’ve noticed over time, for example, that Justine’s habits regarding the actual “function” have changed.  In the few months after she came home from the hospital, it was difficult to discern when she was actually going to the bathroom – the only reliable indicator (beyond the smell) was what I like to call “The Distant” wherein she would be happily staring at something (me, Kim, the cat, Green Bay Packers great Bart Starr) and then suddenly her eyes would drift to gaze longingly at the abyss.  The inevitable then occurred.  Nowadays, it is quite obvious when “nature calls,” indicated by both the grunting and the not-so-subtle change in pallor of her face towards the redder end of the spectrum.  This is usually pointed out by Kim to me as an amusing observation, except of course when Justine is in the tub, in which case the clown music starts playing and we both run around in circles trying to figure out what to do.

I won’t go into details regarding the colorful palettes and densities involved either other than to say that the introduction of solid foods into what was once an all-liquid diet had the effect you might imagine, and has left our Diaper Champ struggling to fulfill it’s anti-odorous missions.

The observations are not particularly disturbing in and of themselves (at least to me) – the issue that tugs at me is that I am willing (and in this case very publicly) to disclose them with other human beings, and not within the confines of a confession booth, which I must admit I haven’t tried, but I wonder whether a priest might reconsider the collar were he forced to listen to it.  The fact that I’ll gladly discuss with my wife, my friends, and the guy who delivers my mail the mundanities of my child’s poop without a second thought brings me to an inescapable conclusion.

I’ve finally fully accepted fatherhood.

Posted in Day to Day Baby Living, Uncategorized. Tagged with , , .