[Setting: a tranquil room flooded with sunlight. A baby and his mother sit and gaze at each happily.]
Mom: [bellowing] Can you grab me the nose picker?
Dad: [offstage] A nose picker or the snot sucker?
Mom: [looks thoughtful] The snot sucker.
Baby blows bubble out of nose.
Parenthood is filled with all sorts of marvellous times and adventures that become treasured memories. Strangely, some of the most memorable (and perhaps, best loved) are those with the gross/messy factor.
I'm not sure why that is. Is it because it makes us laugh? Is it because it is endearing to watch a little one grow and change from needing almost all things done for them to being self sufficient? But still in the back of my mind, Perry Como sings these words as we experience some of these joy studded times.
Sweet, sweet: the memories you give-a me. Can't beat the memories you give-a me.
And I do cherish these moments. Like when I was feeding our son, and he pulled back and burped and the little spit up that came with it landed in my belly button. Or the time that the baby bath spilled before the child got in and while it was being cleaned up and I was holding our naked child, he sneezed and pooed on me at the same time. The countless times that a bit of spew or drool went down the front of my shirt. Sunday morning before church when I realized that my hair was plastered to my chin with my child's boogers. Changing my shirt four times in less than two hours to get rid of vomit, even while the smell remained.
And poop memories are eternal. I can clearly remember holding a young cousin of mine 10 years ago at a wedding and having the contents of this cousin's diaper leak onto my beautiful blue dress. No problems. Everybody poops, after all.
Yet, in all of these circumstances, I found myself laughing. Just as I hold dear the times when he cuddles into my neck or tries to eat my chin - although it does hurt when he bites it and I wasn't as impressed when he left hickeys on my shoulder (babies like to suck things, especially if those things smell like Mom as Mom = food) - so too I enjoy these mildly messy moments.
Ah, but he's a joy. The way he swings his arm around while he's feeding, making sure I'm still there, making sure my nose is still attached and there's still more food for him. The way he smiles like it's the best thing ever when I enter the room he's in. The little chortles of glee for no real reason.
He even makes times better when other memories bother me. Like this week when I found a huntsman (the spider, not the Snow White character) in the clothes that I had just sorted and therefore just touched as I prepared to do laundry. He made that day better by smiling and laughing and squealing and making funny noises. He didn't actually kill the spider, but I'm sure we'll be able to train him to do that. That's the progression right? Sits by self, stands by self, wields shoe and kills arachnids?
So who cares if this morning I swallowed a mouthful of drool (I had been holding him and my take out coffee cup and he drooled over the lid when I looked away)? I'm loving all these little memories in the making.