The Blowout - A Dad Chronicle
Blowout - n. - poop is literally everywhere. It's inescapable.
There is nothing more vile as the christening of a new parent to a new baby than dealing with their very first blow-out. I remember mine like it was yesterday. Mainly because it was almost literally yesterday. Me standing there in a state of absolute shock and panic as I looked down upon the unholy mess my child had made and the first thing that came to my mind was:
Did baby Jesus ever have a blow-out?
I'm sure some of you are thinking "that's sacrilegious!" But those kinds of weird thoughts come into my mind from time to time. Truth be told, they make me laugh.
Little Jesus made the perfect blowout.
Okay, so for those of you without experience in the world blowouts and the absolute terror they can inspire allow me a moment to enlighten you.
A blowout's the type of poop a baby makes which has the unnatural ability to defy gravity as well as space-time. The blowout has magical properties akin to dark magic found in the World of Harry Potter. With unnatural force, a blowout forces a baby's poop well past the boundaries of the humble diaper into every unimaginable direction possible. Up the back, into the hair. Up the front, over the stomach. Down the legs.
The diaper itself isn't so much a diaper any longer. It's more like a single ply Kleenex soaked in water.
So I'm standing there at the changing table wondering.
How in God's creation can that much poo come out of a body that small?
It would be impressive if I wasn't suppressing my gag reflex.
I'm a new dad who has prided himself on the swiftness of his diaper change. I approach it a bit like a Formula 1 pit team changing tires, filling gas and delivering water to the driver. I've got the process down to a science.
Down goes baby. New diaper unfolded underneath. Open soiled diaper. Use diaper to wipe away large excess. Go for a wipe. A pro only needs one. Clean up tushy. Dispose of wipe and soiled diaper. Wrap up baby in a clean diaper. Bam!
The blowout is another matter entirely.
The blowout operation is more akin to surgery. Or toxic waste disposal. Or a nuclear explosion. Maybe all three.
When it was my turn to experience the horrors of a blow out our child (who shall remain nameless so this doesn't come back to haunt her years in junior high) was hanging out in my arms when all of a sudden a sound like the bellows of a hideous hound of hell came erupting from her posterior. I seriously thought our water heater blew up. Next thing I know my nose hairs begin to burn then the smell catches me.
If I live to be a thousand years old not a day would go by where I don't remember that smell. It could choke a donkey.
Then came the warmth. I could feel it spreading. Oh, naive sweet ignorant Aaron. If only I could go back in time and tell you to move your hand.
Well, I can't go back in time, and so I moved the sweet smelly baby around and noticed a wet brown spot where my hand was. I knew immediately what it was and I froze. Like a deer in headlights. I rushed to the changing table with my smelly culprit. Unwrapped her and there she sits.
In her onesie.
Then it hits me. I had poop on my hands.
Now, this is an important moment for me and I'll tell you why. Anyone who gets close enough to me will come to know my aversion to having anything on my hands that isn't salt from French fries. I can't stand greased fingers. If my hands get dirty I've got to wash them as soon as humanly possible. It's not an OCD thing. It's just always been something that's been about me. I like my hands to be clean. I hate grossness on my hands.
But there I stand with the worst thing any person could find on their hands.
And my first reaction at this point wasn't what I thought it would be. I mean, Awnna and I joked about it before the girls came that my biggest fear was the infamous blowout and how she'd likely have to handle them cause of my aversion to all things nasty. But my first reaction looking down at my beautiful daughter covered in poo was not disgust.
It was love.
I looked down and thought. "I'm sorry love! Let's get this stuff off of you. Let's get you cleaned up and into some fresh clothes and a clean diaper!"
And so I proceeded to clean.
Don't get me wrong. Amongst the laughter of my wife and I getting this moment burned into our memory, I was as careful as possible not to touch any more poop than was necessary, but when you're cleaning a blowout.
You're gonna get dirty.
But you won't mind it. Your only thought is about getting your baby clean. If you're like me, you'll use about a hundred wipes. You'll cut off the onesie cause there's no point in washing it. You'll talk lovingly to your kid cause they're not going to be thrilled with all the crap they're in.
Your mind will be on your child.
Not on the mess.
This is like God isn't it? Here we are, His children and there are times where our life has the proverbial blowout and it. is. everywhere. Down the leg. Up the back. Smelly. Sticky. Pea soup colored life. Our Papa doesn't run from this stuff. He's not grossed out or angry. His first thought is. "Oh sweetheart, I'm so sorry! Let's get you cleaned up. We'll wipe off all that mess and we'll put a fresh set of clothes. Get you all better"
So Father will run the warm bath and use a thousand celestial baby wipes and work through the muck. And inevitably, because it's a blowout, He's gonna get something on His hands. But it doesn't bother him. God is bigger than that.
God isn't afraid of the mess. He wants to clean it. He's not mad that you made it. Like a baby, sometimes life happens to us and it ends up everywhere. It is helpful though, to remember that cleaning requires you to be uncomfortable.
When I'm cleaning my baby the mess is bad, and so the clean-up must be extensive. Every dark place and crevice needs to be worked over or else she could get a rash or an infection. Both of these are worse than the mess so I've got to be thorough.
It’s interesting how I find that these moments, where I’m cleaning, tend to be beautiful bonding moments. There comes a point in the process where Jovi or Cora will realize what’s happening. They will feel themselves becoming clean and will settle themselves knowing that all the wiping and movement were actually for their good.
So where does that put us? I guess the take away here is that blowouts happen but God isn't afraid of them. I believe He finds those moments to be some of the sweetest. Moments where in our messiness we relax and focus on our Father knowing everything will be okay in the end.
No pun intended.