Tuesday, June 21, 2005

on poo

with a shout to new parents julie, julia, my georgeous and divine south african replacement wife tertia, and chris, and with all the love ever for the best parent-to-be i know (and i know it will happen!), cecily, today i offer some musings on things ... well ... scatological.

when ian was born, obviously we had a new problem to deal with: dirty diapers.

being busy, modern parents in a home with no laundry facilities, we opted for the usual paper disposable diaper model commonly available in any grocery store. after a few days of using them, however, we discovered some things.

first, contrary to what the box indicates, the size 1 diapers do not hold between 6 and 10 pounds. they are actually for babies that weigh 6 to 10 pounds, an omission that caused us much grief during our first weeks. similarly, size six diapers, which are labeled for 30+ pounds, have the same limitation. new parents beware.

second, while everybody jokes about the joys of children and projectile vomiting, nobody saw fit to warn us about projectile defication. we'd had ian home from the hospital less than a week when, much to his mother's surprise, he let loose a ... well ... spray. while the volume of that spray was small, by today's standards, it nonetheless covered everything nearby with poo.

third, it seems to me that there's no direct relationship between input and output. for example, while my children seem to go through periods when they eat very little, their poo output doesn't noticably decrease. it seems to change in consistency, compactness, and color (ranging from a green pea soup to brown rocks) with no predictable pattern, but there always seems to be a more-or-less fixed amount of it: a (achem) shitload.

i learned in my psychology class last year that sigmund freud, who assigned sexual causes and meanings to everything, divided child developmnt into five stages, the first of which everyone is familiar with: oral. this is the one where everything goes into the mouth. thus it's important, once child can grasp objects, to make sure objects in said child's grasp are safe to put in said child's mouth, causing neither choking nor splintering. the second phase is anal.

and benjamin is in the anal phase.

while it's true that some of his interest remains oral, it's also true that he's completely fixated on poo. he loves to touch it; smell it; taste it; smear it on the bed, himself, the wall next to his crib.

so with love and warning to all new parents out there as my hands still smell like bleach from last night's wall art cleaning session ... beware the backside.

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