In my last post, I mentioned Anne’s unbelievable talent for diaper bombing. Someone asked for an elaboration, so Anne whipped up this flow chart. It explains how she decides whether it is her turn or my turn to change that next diaper. (Note I=Anne and you/your=Rob).
My friends Dave and Kerry just had an amazing baby boy. Welcome to the world, Gavin!
Because I’m basically a parenting expert at this point, I created a short video to demonstrate proper diaper changing technique. If you need a brief refresher, then you might enjoy this video.
It’s been almost six months since Owen was born, and in that time, I’ve learned a lot about the world. Lucky for you, I have a blog, so I can happily share these life lessons with you. To keep things simple, I have decided to leave out the obvious lessons, like “You won’t need an alarm clock anymore” or “Golf is something you used to do, Rob” or “use a wipe, not your hand” or “moms lose baby weight; dads find it.” You know these things!
Lesson 1: The minutes are long, but the months and years are short
At every first birthday party, the parents stand up and say, “Wow, this year really flew by.” I’m sure that I will give that obligatory speech when my son hits one year. But what does it really mean for time to fly by? There are times when I look at my son and think, “Holy shit, he’s a little person. It seems like just yesterday that I was getting weekly email updates from babycenter.com describing his size as about that of a kernel of corn. So in some ways, yes, the time flies by. But sometimes I am equally shocked about how long certain moments feel. Like I bet you didn’t know that when a baby screams in your ear, you can sing the same verse of twinkle twinkle 14,221 times without the minute hand on the clock moving even once. Then after giving it all you got and check to see if the baby’s asleep, you look down and see this looking up at you:
I can sometimes hear him saying, “Nice try, dude.” When the year is done and it feels as if it flew by, don’t forget about how excruciating some of those individual moments were. There’s practically a life time in there. Take one of those long moments to reward yourself for a job well done. You (I) deserve it!
Lesson 2: Holding a baby is an amazing lower back workout
There is probably some medical reason why it’s bad to arch your back just so in order to support the full weight of a small human being on your chest But for now, I’m sticking with it. In fact, there are a number of ways that a small child can be used like a medicine ball or kettle bell. I’ll leave it up to you to decide which exercises lend themselves to the child as medicine ball approach, but here’s where I come out:
YES (Anne wants me to make it explicitly clear that she says this is clearly a no):
Lesson 3: If you’re going to use Habanero Tabasco Sauce, wash your hands before you put your contact lenses in your eyes.
This one has nothing to do with parenting, but it’s a valuable lesson nonetheless. You would also think that it’s the kind of lesson I’d only need to learn once. Not so! I once read that it takes 21 times to create a habit. So let’s just say that I’m well on my way to making washing my hands after Tobasco a lifelong habit. About 1/7th of the way there to be exact.
Lesson 4: Getting out of changing a diaper is an art.
Getting out of changing a diaper is a subtle skill, and I am lucky to be married to a beautiful, kind, caring, considerate, intelligent, gracious, tolerant woman who has mastered it.
Now don’t get me wrong, Anne changes a shitload of diapers. Literally. (Get it?) (Because the diapers are sometimes filled with shit) (You get it) (It was bad. I know). But, she still manages to be an expert at the diaper bomb, i.e., handing a fully loaded baby over to get out of changing the diaper, but couching it in terms of love, with some sweet saying like, “Ohhhh, do you want to do some daddy hugs??” which makes me feel so great! Well played, Anne. Well played.
[A brief note to my female readers: Please refrain from your inevitable comments about breast feeding, giving birth, the physical demands of pregnancy, blah blah blah. I get it. Anne does not deserve to be the butt of my jokes. Well, she can get her own blog, damnit. Because when she hands me our child in the name of love, but actually intended for me to have to touch shit with my bare hands, then I get to blog about that. Also, this never happened. Most of you know that, I'm sure. Anne is a saint. (But just to be conservative, I just purchased Annecomplains.com and AnneComplainsAboutRob.com. Suck it, Anne!!]
Lesson 5: When it comes to parenting, most people are completely insane.
The other day a friend posted an article on facebook about rear facing car seats. First of all, who cares what other people do? Second of all, I freaking read the article and all the comments. Third of all, the comments were the most amazing thing I’ve read in my life. Here’s a summary of the comments:
Person 1: A friend of mine recently switched the seat to front facing because her daughter was screaming so much that it caused her to get in 250 accidents. When we switched to forward facing, she never had an accident again and the kid went on to the Nobel Prize for Car Seat Safety. Do you think this is okay?
Person 2: @P1 - If your kid is less than 15 and is facing forward, you are a terrible person. I hope you rot in hell.
Person 1: @P2 – Oh really? Well you can’t argue with results and my friend’s Nobel Laureate daughter is so much safer now.
Person 2: @P1 – She might be safe now, but if you hit a pothole, her head will probably pop off. #RearCarSeats4Life #YouMurderousBitch
Person 1: @P2 – You probably realized it by now, but my friend is really me. I lied to you because I was embarrassed. Sorry I lied on the Internet.
Person 2: @P1 – I am calling child protective services. You’re a whore.
Person 1: @P2 – I hope your kid can sit forward facing in High School, assface.
Let’s put this in some perspective. When people argue about child rearing on the Internet, logic goes out the window. It’s completely acceptable to use the small sample size of 1 child as a valid defense to an argument. If someone says, “it’s bad to give an infant alcohol,” another person thinks it’s okay to respond with, “yeah, but we gave my son a little vodka in his bottle every day until he was 3 and he became a neurosurgeon.” Just because it worked for A kid, doesn’t mean that it’s the right thing to do. As Wayne Campbell once said upon receiving a gun rack for his birthday, “I don’t even own a gun, let alone many guns that would necessitate an entire rack.”
Seriously, go read the comments. I am obsessed: http://csftl.org/rear-facing-car-seat-myths-busted/
Lesson 6: Blogging is Hard with a Kid. When in Doubt, Just Show Pictures.
I’m trying my best!
Happy New Year!! Like the start of every other new year dating back to 2001, 2014 began with me making irrational commitments that I am unlikely to keep. This year, I resolved to blog every week, to eat healthy, to be a more positive person, to get back into shape and to once and for all stop asking for things from other people.
What’s that you say? ”But, Rob. You’ve never asked for anything from us before, and I love your blog so much that I would be willing to do anything to get you to write more or get back into shape. And I do mean anything.”
Wow, you’re kind of a dirtbag, random internet reader, aren’t you? It appears that we are on the same page, and because I’ve never asked you for anything before (other than your unfailing loyalty, an occasional facebook share or retweet, parenting advice, and money) now seems like a perfect time to hit you up for even more money!
http://www.crowdrise.com/freshairfundnychalf2014/fundraiser/robpollak (Pretty much click any link on my blog for more info.)
Before I get to the nitty-gritty details of just what I need from you, here’s a quick update on the end of 2013 (none of which should be to surprising if you a) have the internet, b) have a phone, c) know me personally, d) are the NSA, or d) stalk me and my family in some other way : Anne and I welcomed our son Owen into the world on August 14th:
Much like Owen, who has been growing steadily since August, my waist line (not pictured above) has been climbing its way up the growth chart. That’s why I need your help!
Now, you may recall that I have made bold commitments like this in the past. Three times I registered for the NYC marathon, and three times I failed to run further than 3 miles while training. In each of those failed attempts, something was missing: Outside forces to make me feel shame and guilt if I fail in my challenge.
If you hadn’t let me down so badly in those past efforts, here’s what I might have looked like crossing the finish line of the famed NYC Marathon:
Instead, I made it through about 1/30th of my training schedule, and most of those efforts looked very very sad. Like this:
So in the name of charity, I am inviting you to be the physical embodiment of my shame. Your heckling and jeering during training should push me to the finish line. Because I know it will be nothing compared to the heckling you will spew upon me should I fail.
Picture it: Every morning when I wake up at 6 am to brave the elements and log my miles, I will be thinking of you. I will be counting my blessings that you were generous enough to give a little bit (a lot) of your hard-earned cash to me.
I mean, what could I possibly doing at 6 am other than going out for a run on a 9 degree day? Not sleeping, of course. It’s impossible to sleep with an infant at 6 am.
So thanks so much! (you dick…)
As always, each donation will earn you a valuable gift that I may or may not follow through on. (Probably not if we’re being honest with each other). In the spirit of the Olympics, you can achieve three levels:
- All donors who contribute any amount above $0 will receive a Rob Complains autographed drawing. It will look something like this (autographed not pictured to maintain claims of authenticity):
(That’s a door not a penis on the building, you sicko)
You will receive the entire bronze package PLUS:
- A phone call (or email if you’re scared to give me your digits) from me directly thanking you for your efforts. I will not be offended if you send me straight to voicemail, but I won’t try to call back. So, if you don’t answer, that’s really a win-win for everyone.
You will receive the entire silver and bronze package PLUS:
- You may select the topic for one blog post that will appear on robcomplains.com within 4 weeks of your donation.
- Wow. Just tell me what you want from me. It’s yours.
Welp, that’s all I’ve got to say. I guess I should mention that I’m running on behalf of the Fresh Air Fund, an organization that does good things for people.
And in case you missed the 17,000 links posted about, here’s one more link to where you can donate:
Today is Anne’s birthday. All she wanted was an ipad, so I didn’t make her a new video. But this one never gets old for me. Here’s a video reminder of how lucky I am.