Posts Tagged ‘poop’

Things You Never Expect, Even before You’re Expecting

First of all, words to account for my extended absence, yet again. Now, on to other words that currently absorb my attention. In my recent years of fatherhood I have passed through many of those thrillingly mundane events of my children’s development that one comes into parenthood already expecting to encounter (e.g. hesitancy with the dark, enamored joy-fear of animals, and the inexplicable entry of “monsters” into the foray) as well as the educational responsibilities we willingly shoulder (e.g. the “how tos”— walking, talking, reading, sharing, dressing, etc.). Yet, this life stage simultaneously introduces a host of things that one takes as innate; things that you wholeheartedly believe you “always knew how to do”; things one never expects to have to teach; things entirely different from those encountered in Émile via the delusional hubris of Rousseau. Below is an incomplete list of “things” that we have been surprised to discover require parental pedagogy:

1.) Crying proportional to the injury

2.) How to blow one’s nose

3.) Going #1 and #2 at the same time (I’m not even sure how to teach this)

4.) How to smell things

5.) Not to drink while still chewing

6.) Staying on the toilet while pooping

7.) Keeping one’s hands out of one’s own butt

8.) How to use a straw

9.) Not to backwash

10.) Not to smell others’ bottoms because “something is stinky”

11.) Voice volume modulation

Dancing is not included on this list. Dancing is primal, natural, intrinsic, elemental, congenital— the original state. This we do not teach.

21 Steps to Citizenship

Last week, we scheduled an appointment with the US embassy in London to apply for Langston’s US citizenship and a passport. The following are the steps required in this application process.

(Preliminary work: register son for an appointment at 9 am on October 4th via embassy website. Print, fill out, and gather all required documents. Photograph baby boy (a difficult task) for a ridiculously required baby passport. In order to avoid London traffic and the £8 “congestion fee” for driving through the city, find the tube station closest to the embassy. Figure out which station on that line lies the furthest north and its parking situation, thus minimizing driving distance and parking fees: Stanmore station is our goal. Plan route to avoid needless delays and notify family of plan. Wake baby up if he’s not paying attention. October 4th arrives.)

Step 1.) Rouse child and wife at 4am.

Step 2.) Morning preparations (e.g. dress, breakfast, etc.); gather materials and get into car.

Step 3.) Depart by 5am

Step 4.) Drive two hours and ten minutes south to Stanmore Tube Station. With 45 minutes remaining, son begins to cry. Arrive at Stanmore.  Thank Jesus that there are a plethora of parking spaces available.

Step 5.) Realize that you do not have enough change for the pay-and-display permit. So, grab your wallet with the intention of taking out some cash at an ATM in the station.

Step 6.) Follow a man to the station door. Take note that its locking mechanism has been activated. Man turns around and says, “It’s locked.” Ask man, “Why?” To which he responds, “The trains are on strike today all over London.” Look of sickness and fear falls over face.

Step 7.) Clean pants and run back to car.

Step 8.) Find wife nursing baby. Grab map from backseat and announce, “Drastic change of pl…” only to be interrupted by, “skwllllllshhpppppflppt” and see baby dump pour through son’s diaper into his clothing.

Step 9.) Son follows this up by immediately spitting up on mother. Mother realizes she only has a single replacement outfit.

Step 10.) Head to nearest gas station, take out cash, plan route (realize you do not have a proper map of London), and send wife to restroom to change baby.

Step 11.) Inside unisex restroom devoid of toilet paper, wife lays baby on mat. When it comes time to change baby, wife discovers single change of clothing has fallen out of bag and onto a wet, dirty mop.

Step 12.) Wife changes baby. Mid-way through, baby urinates all over mother’s jeans.

Step 13.) Wife returns to car with virtually naked baby, recounts story, and you head into London. An hour and a half until appointment.

14.) Remaining twelve mile stretch into the city is hampered by traffic. Decide somewhere between 2 miles and .5 miles left that you just need to park because your appointment is in 15 minutes.

15.) Park in sketchy neighborhood garage. Unfold stroller, pack baby in, and nearly forget envelope of important documents on top of your car.

16.) Begin running through drizzle in the general direction of the embassy. Discover journey is longer than .5 miles. Baby begins crying

17.) Let blankets fall out of stroller onto ground and run over them with the stroller. Baby still crying.

18.) Wife removes baby from stroller and carries remaining .5 miles to the embassy.

19.) Run to US citizens’ line twenty minutes late for your appointment only to realize they don’t care about your tardiness and they pass you through security. (Total jog of 1.4 miles).

20.) Change and feed baby, submit applications, and make payments in the embassy.

21.) Eat at Chipotle.

A Blind Man, an Incubus, and a Fearless Mustache