Non-Maternal Instincts

Forget to bathe the baby? Have I got a solution for you!

Though necessary, babies and baths don’t always click.

For instance, until an infant’s u-cord falls off, parents are recommended to sponge bathe the belly, keeping the button as dry as possible. There is a cleaning regime that is encouraged, but soaking the baby in water is a big, fat no-no.

So basically baby comes out of mommy’s super gooey insides (I know, nice visual), and until baby loses his crusty dead-skin attachment, baby can’t be fully bathed. {Anyone hungry for jello salad?}

And any mother of an infant boy who has been, uh, well, you know, “trimmed,” knows that cleansing ‘down there’ requires special attention until the little guy’s little guy heals properly.

And when it’s finally kosher (pun intended) to give sweet, little, vomity, poopy baby a real bath, it’s usually in an enclosed ‘baby tub’ lined with a net or mesh attachment allowing baby to feel snug and secure. But the problem is that sometimes nature calls when baby is swaddled in mesh, so if you can imagine seedy, grainy, mustard-colored paste draining through a sifter, well, it’s not a very sanitary way to clean God’s most precious miracle (seedy, grainy, mustardy? Yep, that’s newborn poop. Kind of looks like spicy dijon. Another one of God’s twisted jokes, I’m sure).

And then baby grows up, and bathtime becomes fun for baby, but not-so-much for mommy. Like the time my son began playing with a squishy, cylinder toy that I could not quite identify until I realized he pooped in the tub and was playing with his own stool. That was a special moment. We really bonded that day. I cussed a lot, but we bonded nonetheless.

Or the first time my son discovered splashing and left the tub completely empty of water and the bathroom completely flooded.

And the time I had nakey baby ready to go, waiting for the tub to fill, and seconds before I set him in, he peed all over the bathroom rug.

So while my son now LOVES the bath (actually, he always has), it hasn’t always been the most enjoyable experience for me.

And that is where our four-legged pal comes in. See, in the wild, mothers bathe their young. Not with a bathtub, sponge and faucet, but with saliva and tongue. But if you think I’m going to lick up all the funk that is stuck to my son by the end of the day, you must have misread the title of this meme. This is non-maternal instincts! Meaning there ain’t nothin’ maternal about my actions. Heck. No. I am NOT licking up anyone’s funk, not even my own.

But our dog, the same one who eats his vomit after upchucking all over the carpet, doesn’t seem to mind the baby’s funk. In fact, I think he rather enjoys it.

You might recall this video from little man’s third month of life.

What a deal! I don’t have to mess with filtered feces and minor flooding, I simply let the dog do the dirty work!

And guess what? Bathtime is only getting better. Check out this recent escapade.

This laid-back mommy is in lazy town heaven! Sit back, relax, and let the dog run the show. Happy puppy. Clean baby. And water conservation at its finest.

Dear Lord,

Thank you for four-legged companions and their maternal instincts (and our pup’s even a dude!). Thank you for dog saliva and a dog’s apparent ability to turn bathtime into the most-fun-ever! While he’s at it, I’m thinking of letting the pooch teach little man to do his thing out back, lifting his leg, squatting – no wiping necessary! Whadya think?




Non-Maternal Instincts

If you work for Children’s Services, please stop reading.
So I guess you could say that when it comes to protecting my child from all the crap that he can (and will) get into around the house, I suck.
Baby proofing just ain’t my thing. I tend to be more of a he-needs-to-listen-to-me-and-learn-for-himself kind of mom. And if you don’t agree with me, then don’t send your child over here for a playdate.
That’s not to say I don’t baby proof at all. We have one stair-blocking gate (an open stairwell leading to our basement), a half dozen outlet covers (I have yet to know anyone who has been electrocuted, but I don’t want my son to be the first. Not cool), and cabinet locks on two cabinets containing hazardous materials (ironically these are the same materials used to clean the bathtub where he bathes and the windows that he smears his grubby paws across all day, but whatever).
Until this happened.
Yes, folks, that’s a martini glass. Strangely my husband and I don’t even like martinis. I’ve never even consumed a martini, ever. Seriously. Back in my alcohol consuming days I was a beer and wine girl, thank you very much.
So heck if I know why we have martini glasses. I think it was part of the oh-we’re-getting-married-and-need-sophisticated-things-like-cone-shaped-glassware-in-order-to-appear-more-married. Um, that lasted a whole second considering baby was born seven months after our wedding day. You do the math.
And naturally we have these very fancy glasses stored in the back of a cabinet that we never open. My son, on the other hand, didn’t get the memo. He opened the cabinet. He found fun-shaped shiny things. He grabbed. He whacked. He said, “uh-oh.”
Okay, chill out. He’s fine.  Not a scratch on his body. Maybe my son is meant to be one of those crazy mad scientists who walks on glass and eats fire. Rock on.
And in case you are wondering, this occurred immediately after the broken glass incident.

Don’t worry, we didn’t get all whacky with the baby proofing after that. And trust me, baby proofing can get whacky – I’ve seen folks: put straps around the T.V. and bolt the straps to the wall so that the T.V. doesn’t fall (because T.V.’s do that sort of thing, apparently), place rubber corner protectors on everything in sight including rubber corners, lock toilets and refrigerators, fence in play areas inside an enclosed room inside a locked house, and mount their dresser to the wall so that it doesn’t tip over and fall on baby (right).
There are even people who pay people to come to their house and tell them all the ways that their kids will die because of the type of blinds they have or the door knobs they don’t have.
Not us. My son does not and never will live in a bubble. He has fallen off of a couch, out of a bed, and down a few stairs. And now with the broken glass incident on his record, I surely should be in jail for child endangerment, don’t ya think?
Dear Lord,
Am I a terrible mother? I simply want my son to explore and go on adventures and journey through his childhood. So, yeah, the glass breaking incident wasn’t one of my mothering highlights, but I learned from it, ain’t that the point? And my son, well, he learned that breaking glass can be fun. Because, well, it can be. 
Are you going to put me in a bubble when I get to Heaven? Because I probably deserve it.


Non-Maternal Instincts

Whose food is it anyway?

What would possess me to make a meal for my 10-month old? Oh yeah, the fact that he needs to eat (something about food, water, shelter, blah, blah, blah).

So then why is it that my I’ve-already-devoured-two-scoops-of-premium-dog-food chow hound ends up eating more of my delicately grilled bread with cheese than the young, growing boy for which it was intended?
This has become a bit of a game at my house. I slave over lunch (and breakfast and dinner, but who’s counting), I cut it up all cute and tiny, I place it sweetly on my son’s tray, I bless it with love, and he SMASHES it, SPITS it, FLINGS it, CHUCKS it, and ultimately DROPS every last morsel on the ground for the I-eat-my-own-poop dog to consume. Oh, the horror.
So not only am I spending hard-earned money on a fifty-pound back of wholesome, all natural dog morsels, but I’m serving hard time in solitary confinement my kitchen on the dang pooch’s fifth and sixth course as well.
And they say kids will eat if they’re hungry – Ha! Maybe if I left him in an empty cell giving him his meal on a tray through a slot in the door. But not if eating also means playing “catch the over-priced organic strawberries” with a boy’s best friend.
Dear Lord, 
What’s it going to take to make my son eat? Maybe dogs, like cows, should instinctually regurgitate their food and force it into the mouth of its young (and by its young, I mean my son). Oh, you find that disgusting? Geesh, how is it any different than when I found the two of them chewing on different ends of the same dog toy? 
Seriously, people, my son chews on dog toys. Judge me if you dare.