Being new to this whole blogging thing, it didn’t occur to me that posting a feature length discussion on my big toe might not be the best way to gain an audience. I realize now that in order to build a following, I have to give the people what they want. But since I can’t write about Jell-O every week, I’ve decided to go with the next best thing…Eli!
Over the past 18 months, my son Eli has changed me almost as much as I’ve changed him…only in my case, there was much less poop. You see, I was never a baby person. I liked kids, but babies weren’t my thing. I wasn’t one to want to hold them or tickle them or blow raspberries on their bellies. And I certainly didn’t want to watch videos or look at pictures of them. But now when I see a baby, I need to get my fix. I’m respectful of boundaries of course (unlike most of the population, where complete strangers feel free to glom onto any baby in their path) but I am definitely much more interested in them than I used to be.
And I’m much more interested in my own than I thought I’d be. During her pregnancy, I’d “joke” with my wife that if she took care of the baby for the first four years, I’d deal with it for the rest of its life. I also worked out agreements where I would never have to change a diaper, clean up puke, or get up in the middle of the night, so long as she was around to do it. I was even granted naming rights. I confess, I took advantage of the fact that Sarah was much more intent on having a baby than I was, and used that to work out sweet deals for myself. Surprisingly, she agreed to all my demands, and I’m proud to say that since the baby was born, she has not honored a single one!
Okay, I was swindled. They say there’s a sucker born every minute, only I’ve been a sucker since the minute he was born. Not that I’m complaining, or keeping score (but if I was, let the record show that I’ve changed 73.4% of his diapers, cleaned up 95% of his puke, and given him 2% of his baths – the one job I really don’t like and have somehow managed to avoid. That and cutting his nails. Never gonna do it) But not only do I change his diapers, I’m a dork about it. We sing Bon Jovi songs: “I’ll diaper you. I’ll wipe your poo. I’ll do anything, I’ll powder you. You know it’s true, baby I’ll diaper yooooo!” Then I kiss his belly, tickle his chin, and pretend his feet are stinky. Like I said, total dork.
It doesn’t hurt that he’s so freakin’ cute. But I honesty don’t mind doing it. And while I certainly don’t love getting up in the middle of the night, I love him, so that make’s it all right. Not that he wakes up all that often, good baby that he is. He must take after his mother, who also doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night, and hence never seems to hear him crying. I'll look over at her, soundly sleeping, thinking, “We had a deal…” but then remember the ordeal she went through to bring him into this world, and dutifully climb the stairs to soothe him back to sleep.