I’m no parent, or anything


Hi. Happy Wednesday.

To start, let’s do a couple barely-introspective paragraphs:

You may remember (although, you’d be quickly forgiven if you didn’t) that we had houseguests back in September. While they were here, we set them up with five-star accommodations (read: the air mattress in the former computer-room now nothing-room). And, as a testament to my laziness and general apathy, I’m sad to admit that I just today deflated that mattress and folded/stored all the bedding. Oh yeah, some three-and-a-half months later.

It was all part of this “assess and purge” sort of cleaning kick I’m suddenly on, taking stock of what we have and how it’s stored, and getting rid of non-essentials wherever possible. We’ve got a ton of junk we don’t use or need, and it’s time to start getting rid of it – donating, selling, or just junking altogether. It feels good to free up space and organize, even if it does drive Sharaun a bit mad when I get a little OCD like this. Sometimes, I just reach a breaking point and go all flip-out neat-and-tidy crazy… this is one of those times.

Next, let’s do a music paragraph:

Over the Christmas free-download period (it’s customary for some of the online music-enabling sites I frequent to offer “free” downloads over the holiday season), I somehow ended up grabbing a copy of The Pretty Things’ 1968 album, S.F. Sorrow. Before just a few weeks ago, I’d never even heard of the album, didn’t even know it existed. But, as soon as the first song came over the speakers I knew I’d stumbled onto something special. Let me tell you now, I absolutely love “finding” amazing albums I’ve never heard of. Having somewhat of a big head about the amount of the “important music” canon I’m familiar with, these UFO gems always seem so special. This is some sort of under-the-radar psychedelic rock-opera masterpiece, apparently recorded at Abbey Road during the same time the Beatles and Floyd were in-house recording Sgt. Pepper and Piper, respectively. Man, what the heck was in the water at Abbey Road that year? Anyway, the album itself is immediately likable and interesting… and I’m really glad I “discovered” it, forty years after it was made.

Now let’s do a random today at work paragraph:

Sometimes I just feel like I’m in the wrong place for the particular moment. I’ve written about the sensation before (but I can’t seem to find the link… lil’ help?). Today was a classic case of that type of day. I sat at work all morning knowing I should be at home instead of in my fuzzy-walled cubicle staring at my computer screen. I just felt that I wasn’t supposed to be there, and the draw to get where I was supposed to be was strong enough to be almost physical, a muscle-urge to actually pack up and walk out the door to be with my family. I’m not always sure what the catalyst is for such urges, they tend to seem pretty random, but there’s no denying the “push” accompanying them. Anyway, I sat there, listening to my iPod and dreaming away the morning – doing next to nothing for the shareholders, who, if they could’ve peeked in on me, would likely petition the board for my removal. I just wanted to be home, to be doing things other than the great-nothing of work. Hey, I like that… I might start calling work “the great nothing” instead of “the old sawmill” from now on… not a bad nomenclature. Anyway, the feeling eventually passed, or better faded into a general want to just head home and be done with it.

And some Keaton paragraphs:

This month, Sharaun and I decided we’d get to work on teaching Keaton how to use the potty. The myriad of advice on when to begin this parenting process is mixed, and to me it just seemed most logical to just do it when we felt we might be successful, gaging that percentage by the cues she’s giving us at the time. And, being that, for the past few weeks, she’s shown a marked interested in “the potty” and the whole potty-process, and has taken to announcing her pees and poos with “Keaton use(d) the potty!,” we figured the time might be right. I mean, I’m no parent, or anything… but the good Lord saw fit to put this child under my care – so I must’ve showed some sort of promise, or kernel of talent, or something… you’d think.

So, as of yesterday, when she makes her potty announcements, we march her into the bathroom and go through the process: 1) pull down your pants (she has a lot of trouble with this, and seems to want to pull her pants “up” instead… which I keep telling her won’t work the same at all), 2) we’ll take off your diaper (again, having a step in there that she can’t do herself seems bad… but I’m not ready to toss the diaper yet), 3) sit on potty and do the good stuff, 4) wipe, 5) wash hands.

Thinking about it as a child, it really is quite a complex process of human engineering to relieve oneself in-line with current Western thinking on hygiene. I mean, there’s like a whole symphony of events that have to align to make the execution flawless. How do you, for example, explain to a semi-verbal not-yet-two-year-old that her pee-hole isn’t even lined-up over the pee-receptacle? There are a hundred bits of minutiae like that, too. Heck, pondering it, I’m amazed I hit the blow as much as I do myself.

I’m happy to announce, though, that, today she made her first two pees in her little kid potty, and it was quite a moment for Sharaun and I. I’ll let ya know if we experience continued success.

Finally, the closing thing:

Goodnight, love your bodies.


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