Your Child’s Digestive Process

May 21, 2008

The first bowel movement of a baby’s life is considered somewhat of an event by most new parents.  Many feel the need to coo and brag about their baby’s accomplishment and will often drag anyone within arms reach to the nursery to gaze upon this wondrous creation.  I am not sure why this is?  It may be that up until the event, the baby has done nothing that would validate it as being a human child.  After all, they don’t look like the Gerber Baby when they are fresh from the womb. 

Extremely smart people must have also recognized the significance of this little treasure as they assigned a fancy scientific name to it.  Your baby’s first poop is called “meconium”.  I am fairly certain meconium is Latin for, “Good God! What the hell is that?”  Meconium resembles hot tar and if you open your baby’s diaper without prior knowledge of what to expect, you may think that your child was paving an interstate in the nursery. Doctors and nurses expect most parents to be alarmed upon making this discovery and are trained to talk you off the ledge when you start to spin out of control. I am positive this is one of the reasons that hospitals have mandated a minimum one day hospital stay for new parents. They probably needed to cut down on the number of people returning with fear in their eyes and little black poops in zip-lock bags.  

This meconium stuff eventually disappears and is replaced by what many refer to as “sweet-poo”.  I don’t believe anyone has ever tasted it to confirm that it is sweet; I think it is called that because of the way that it smells.  Your child’s poop is going to remain pretty inoffensive for as long as the child remains exclusively breast fed (I bet most Dads are unaware of this fact).  When your child starts to experiment with other forms of sustenance, however, the poop will no longer rate the adjective “sweet”.   I know this is a bit graphic, but parents spend an inordinate amount of time dealing with their children’s waste.  If you doubt this statement then please explain to me why the “Diaper Genie” sold like a billion units?  This is a great piece of gear; you deposit the dirty diaper into the opening, twist the lid and presto, 50 poop filled diapers strung together like sausage links (pure genius). 

In our home, Mackinley was responsible for naming the next level of excrement.  He named it “Holy Cow Poop”.  The name came into existence when Mack observed one of Cayden’s diaper changes after having consumed approximately 3-gallons of pureed peas.  When the diaper was removed Mack gazed at Cayden’s accomplishment and said “Holy-Cow!!”, thus the name “Holy-Cow Poop”. It stuck. The odor produced by “Holy-Cow poop” could easily strip the paint off an old tractor.  There is nothing cute about a child’s bowel movements once they have reached this developmental stage.  In fact, since our children refuse to flush the toilet, I have often thought we had an intruder suffering from irritable bowel syndrome breaking into our home at night to use the facilities.   

When your baby is still in diapers “Holy-Cow Poop” is fairly easy to manage.   However, you will be called into action several times a day in an attempt to keep your child from carrying a loaded diaper around the house.  What I determined from my experiences is that situational awareness is critical.  Here is my advice: 

Set yourself up for success by having a tub of baby wipes prepped and ready for use and a fresh diaper opened and ready for immediate application.   

When you crack the seal on your child’s diaper, be prepared to have your nasal hair disintegrate and your eyes start to water uncontrollably.  At the point of your initial disorientation, your child will make a two-handed grab for whatever is residing in his/her diaper.  To alleviate this concern, hold both of the child’s grasping devices (hands) while simultaneously pinning the child’s feet back toward his/her head with the same hand.  This allows for easy access to the child’s buttocks, which is most certainly covered with the “Holy Cow” substance.   *Be aware pinning the child’s feet back will increase the muzzle velocity of his/her intestinal tract. As quickly as possible, capture the offending substance on a baby-wipe (as many as necessary), and rapidly encase the child’s hindquarters in a fresh diaper.  Gently release the child back into the wild and begin recovery operations with gallons of Visine, hand soap and Glade Air Freshener.  By the time the initial wave of nausea subsides, it will be time to begin the process anew.  Good luck! You’ll only have to worry about this for 2.5-3 years per child. 

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Connie posted the following on May 23, 2008 at 3:39 am.

I had completely forgotten about HOLY COW poop!


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