Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Is He A Good Baby?

So, I got the question again today: is The Baby a good baby? I gave my usual flip answer: "No, he's a bad baby. He's stabbed his brother, he tries to sneak out every night, and I'm pretty sure he took twenty bucks out of my wallet yesterday." That usually gets some nervous laughs, before I change the subject and say nice things about my little boy.

No, I will not (again) get into the philosophical discussion of what a good vs bad baby is and whether or not good and bad/evil can or should be attributed to a person who's life is so new that, if they were a library book, they would rack up no late charges. My point is not to poke fun at the questioner, but instead to examine the life of my newborn son.

He seems to be... well... a baby. A newborn baby, at that. He's very, very small, compared to his brothers, and he's very, very squishy. His legs are till froggy-shaped and haven't really straightened out like they will. His hands and arms flail about randomly, because he can't see well enough to aim them (and lacks the muscular control to intentionally grab yet). He pees and poops a lot - he's the only kid in diapers right now, and we have a lot of cloth diapers, and we are running diaper laundry every day or day and a half. Last night, for example, he wound up going through four diapers in a 30 minute time period!

Not as gross as it seems, though. Newborn poop doesn't smell and, consistency and color, resembles spicy brown mustard more than poop. Newborn pee is harmless as well. Diapers are just utterly unable to keep newborn excretions, no matter how the diapers are sized and shaped, so you just deal with it. Whatever.

The boys are adjusting quite well to the baby, I think. There's still the attention issue that we still need to work through, which isn't much of an issue when both parents are still at home, unemployed. The Boy comes downstairs in the morning, or home from an outing, saying, "Where's Mum and The Baby? I want to see the tiny little baby named The Baby!" The Boy will frequently pause his running about and playing to give his baby brother a kiss, or to beep his little nose, or to tickle his belly a little bit. Little Bear is starting to emulate that, although he's still too little to really understand what's happening.

The good news is that the nighttime stuff is starting to work itself through, although The Boy does get up two or three time to go potty. We don't have a nighttime diaper solution for him that he can take on and off by himself, so a parent still needs to be there to supervise. That would be me, because I can't do what The Wife does for the newborn. The only other issue is that when The Boy joins us, it's later in the morning, when he's ready to be awake. This means he spends the snuggle time kicking me, poking me, and otherwise preventing me from getting some wonderfully needed 6:15-6:45am sleep. The good news: he's staying in his room, willingly enough, until it's daylight. The bad news: daylight is really, really early this time of year.

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