Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Dentist and Decomposable Diapers

            I left work a bit early to meet my wife at the dentist today. Need one of those protective doodads so I quit grinding my teeth together at night. Probably due to all the stress and lack of sleep. Turns out my wife needs thousands of dollars in metal replacements. I looked at her and said, “We can’t afford this!” and she said, “I know.” Not like we really know what to do, because we’re both exhausted and it’s not the kind of thing you can really avoid. She said, “I’m going to teach Celia to floss every day so she doesn’t deal with this.” I nodded and thought, isn’t it funny how we try to make everything better for the next generation when it didn’t work out well for ourselves, but then the next generation doesn’t realize how good they’ve got it, because it’s always just been so good for them, so they end up a bit spoiled, really. Are we already starting to live vicariously through our child? I’ve met people who do that. It’s quite sad really. Like they have no life of their own without their kids. No, we wouldn’t do that, I just want the best for her. Nothing wrong with that.
            When we left the dentist the baby was a bit fussy, so I held her as we walked to the car. She’s getting big, but I can still carry her long distances if I switch arms occasionally. I figure she’s got to be around twenty-two pounds because that’s the size four diaper, and we just upgraded this week. The great diaper conspiracy. You know, they actually give you less diapers as you move up to the next size. You think you’re getting the same amount, because the package is the same size, but no, really, there are less diapers in each package. And we somewhere along the line got convinced to buy those decomposable ones to be more “nature-friendly” so those diapers are starting to add up. I keep promising myself that when I have a spare moment I’ll call a diaper service and get us hooked up with cloth. Ha-ha! A free moment! It makes me laugh just writing that down.
All the way to the car the baby made this delightful “Blah, blah, blah” sound that made both of us smile and turn to each other and say, “Blah, blah, blah.” I think she likes it when we mimic her. Blah, blah, blah, baby. Blah, blah.
            But when we strapped her into the car seat, it was like something snapped inside of her, and good ol’ Squealia came to the surface. It wasn’t just squeals, it was peals. And traffic was slower than ever, and I felt in my bones the need for a nap as she just kept screaming and screaming, with no end in sight.
            I have this ear thing, where it actually starts to hurt in my right ear if things are too loud, and I’ve had ringing in my ears from this baby before, so I plugged my ears with my fingers and inched forward in the traffic using my knees to steer. I looked over at Michelle, and she looked back. Both of us had our fingers in our ears.
Suddenly we burst into laughter. Not a scene we’d ever imagined on our honeymoon, that’s for sure. We laughed and laughed as she cried and cried.
            I kept chuckling to myself for awhile. I think it’d be way too easy to get upset about things. Especially the way it just keeps coming. The late nights. The screams. The poop. I actually gave up grumpiness for Lent, and that was one of the best things I ever did, because it really wasn’t helping anyone. I don’t know how Michelle does it. She’ll be exhausted and give the baby this big smile and smother her with attention. It’s inspiring. Because really, what’s the use of getting grumpy? Better to just laugh at life and pray it doesn’t stay this way too long. I can’t believe families who have tons of kids. Even the thought of two is scary to me right now. Let’s just take this one squeal at a time!

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