As you prepare for a baby, you gather all your worries. First and foremost, will the baby be healthy and will it have a better chance at happiness than we did? Then, you think about the finances, schooling, saving, etc.
But now the baby is here and everything is at eye level. He doesn’t need college tuition now, he needs wipes. He doesn’t need to know math the regular math or the new math. He just needs to make about 5 wet and 3 poopy diapers a day and hopefully sleep more than 3 hours 2 times a night.
So a part of your brain can relax with the forward planning because you are hyper focused on changing the diaper and keeping the circumcision and belly button clean. It works out. People and animals have been taking care of their offspring for millennia. The crying…we are hard wired to at least try to get it to stop. So far it means, nursing or cleaning is needed. Easy peasy. And while disposable diapers did not evolve with our butts, our instinct helps us get that baby clean.
The challenge comes when we push the limits of nature…like today. Near the Miami University conservatory at Hamilton, a greenhouse to grow plants out of their natural environment, we decided to change Leo in the car.
Midway through the diaper change his bladder emptying instinct kicked in and I reacted. I think partLy, I was protecting Alma’s face, partly my own, definitely Leo. I imagine this used to be an instinct to evacuate waste to prevent a predator eating the baby. Anyway…I used my hand. Bruno Mars would put his hand on a blade for you…but I wonder if his hand would intercept a stream of baby pee. And it went on for awhile. My instinct to protect our family put my hand in the stream. And I held it there despite the screams in my mind of confusion at what I had done. But I laughed most of the way home. This is the parenting instinct. I think I am officially daddy Leno.
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