Note: Don't ever hire me to write headlines for your newspaper. Or blog. Or magazine. It's clearly not my gift.
Being a mom has caused me to spend a not-so-insignificant part of my time and energy thinking about, anticipating, and cleaning up pee and poop. For each of the kids, we kept a chart for the first few weeks, recording every wet and poopy diaper. Sometimes, I think we even designated the amount - little poop, medium poop, and POOPY!!! with lots of exclamation marks.
When Ben first came home from the hospital, we faithfully wrote down each diaper change. (I love the diapers with the stripe that changes color when the baby urinates - brilliant! We didn't have those for Evan and Corrie). After a few days, we noticed that he wasn't peeing as much as he should, and that's when I started panicking about breastfeeding and my supply and whether he was getting enough. Once I started pumping and we started feeding him milk with a syringe, there was pee. Lots of pee. I even wrote a celebratory email to family and friends. "We've been supplementing with pumped breastmilk for a couple of days, and finally we've gotten a good number of wet diapers. I'm so relieved because I was really worried that he would get dehydrated. Praise God for pee!"
After that, Ben was good. Until ... solids.
Sweet Ben has a hard time pooping. I've taken him off cereals entirely (no rice, oatmeal, etc.) because he either vomits or gets really constipated. For now, he is on an a diet of fruits, vegetables, and breastmilk. He eats prunes every day to help keep things moving. Soon we might add in some coconut oil to help him gain some weight.
He hasn't pooped in a day and a half, so I'm hoping that tomorrow will be the day.
But some days, he surprises us. Here's what happened on Wednesday:
When I carried Ben (in his carseat) into the house, I plopped the seat right in front of Emmett. They smiled at each other while I went to unload the car. When I came back, Emmett was groaning ... Ben was happily sitting in an ENORMOUS pile of poop. Ben was holding his feet up by his head and grinning from ear to ear. There was poop on the sides of the carseat, up the back of Ben's onesie, on his legs, on the strap of the carseat ... disgusting.
While Emmett made dinner, I tackled our very poopy son. I cleaned him up then fed him dinner. Then Emmett left to pick up the big kids. Ben and I just hung out in the living room. And he was delightful! He had so much pep and enthusiasm - he rolled front to back and back to front then rolled right and rolled left and grinned and laughed and grabbed his feet. It is the most *fun* I've seen him have in forever. I gave him a bath and he splashed and played and looked at himself in the mirror. He was just a super-happy, fun, big-grinning baby.
It must have felt really good to get all that poop out! :)
Now ... it's Saturday night, and we're waiting on poop. Again.
I feel that I'm working on some complex equation with many variables.
a + b = x - (y + z)
a = food, b = milk, x = desired weight gain, y = vomit, z = constipation. It feels like a balancing act to give him the right combination and amount of food and breastmilk that results in both weight gain and productive bowels.
That's what being a mom is all about, right?