In life, we get to experience so many firsts, which we look forward to with unbridled anticipation, wondering when they will happen. Our first crush. Our first date. Our first kiss. Our first A in school. Our first job. Our first car. Some firsts, like our marriage, we hope will last forever and remain firsts forever until death do us part. As life evolves, many of our firsts transition into seconds, thirds, fourths and so on, which we happily accept and expect, allowing us to get to have additional opportunities to get better with practice.
When you become a parent, the genesis of new life involves lots of amazing firsts for you and your baby. Baby's first smile, first laugh, first roll, first crawl, first steps, and even baby's first bowel movement. And, to your amazement, what you once thought to be grotesque, like baby poop, will be welcomed. However, when baby's first experience with constipation arises and a number two is not forthcoming, you'll find yourself begging, pleading, and even making deals with the devil to stop the ringing in your ears from the incessant screams of a baby with clogged anal egress. You'll experience a whole new host of firsts just to help your baby clear out his colon in order to smell a rank and odiferous diaper. Gripe water, followed by probiotic drops, other homeopathic remedies, and even baby abdominal massage, will all be tried in order to alleviate baby's backlog and belly burn. As the hours and days pass with nary a number two peering out at you from your baby's nappy at each diaper change, you will resort to any method to help your child, things you'd have never imagined doing, things you would never do for anyone else, even yourself.
Despite my child's pediatrician telling me that it is normal for a breastfed baby not to empty its bowels for up to a week, my poor son lay before me writhing in pain after his anus went on strike three days earlier.
"WAH! WAAH! WAAAAAAAH!," wailed my baby boy.
"I've done everything to ease your pain, to no avail," I whimpered empathetically. "I don't want to do this, but I fear I have no other choice. It's time to bring out the big guns."
My son continued to cry. I undid his diaper, allowing the velcro tabs to loosely fall to the sides of his legs. I gingerly slipped a new diaper underneath the already dry one caressing his bottom.
"It's time for the feather."
Searching with his eyes for this feather of which I spoke, he shot me a perplexed look when I pulled out the Vaseline and dipped a Q-Tip inside the full jar of petroleum jelly. First filling my lungs with air and heaving out a giant groan, I stared at my crying boy's squirming tush straight in its proverbial eye.
"Deep breath, baby. Deep breath," I repeated with the intention of giving both my son and I courage to get through the next excruciating five minutes. Steadying my hand, I gently inserted the Q-Tip into the mouth of my son's southern extremity, and feathered his bum for the first time. Unprepared and caught off guard, his cries were interrupted with a little yelp, followed by a look mixed with both delight and disgust.
"Sorry, little man. Maybe I should've bought you a drink first," I advised. "Once we're done here, I'll buy you a bottle of milk. Now let's get those bowels to move!"
Living by the motto, if at first you don't succeed, try, try again, I daintily dipped the implement into my baby's backside with freshly applied Vaseline a few more times per the doctor's instructions. Five minutes turned into ten. I waited with bated breath. Finally, his stomach contorted with uproarious grumbling. Imminently thereafter, I achieved the desired result: a colonic explosion of epic proportions only to be matched by a volcanic eruption by Mount Saint Helen.
"Oh, the things I do for my child," I sighed to myself with relief. Never before was I happier to clean up crap. I re-diapered my son, dressed him and did a victory dance around the nursery with him in my arms.
"Let's not make a habit out of this," I cajoled to my cooing and relaxed boy. "And, by the way, we're going to keep this little secret between you and me. Daddy doesn't need to know about what went down today."
We don't need to give the hubby any bright ideas.
© 2014. Naomi Elana Zener. All Rights Reserved.