Posts tagged co-parenting

How Not To Do It

Regarding cloth diapering, more specifically, regarding your well-intentioned husband’s eagerness to help with cloth diapering; and regarding sheet changing, especially at night after aforementioned husband helps with cloth diapering:

1. Either fully train husband in cloth diaper procedures, especially: absorbancy of inserts vs. doublers, the need for extra absorbancy at night; or always double-check his application of cloth diapers to baby.

How-not-to-do-it example: Your loving husband takes over bedtime duties while you walk around the neighborhood at dusk chatting with an old middle school friend. Upon arriving home, you find your son sleeping peacefully. You smile at your husband and decide not to look closer to see what he is wearing on his bum (your son, not your husband). Your failure to check your son’s bum results in waking up to a screaming, soaking wet baby. Your husband has put a newborn insert on top of a pocket diaper. This is the equivalent of putting two rough paper towels into a pair of waterproof pants. Not only does the paper towel not hold any of the liquid that a baby’s bladder releases, it feels extra terrible against his skin when it gets wet. This is how not to do it.

2. Install baby sheets and waterproof pad in this order: baby sheet, big waterproof pad, extra baby sheet. Failure to do so will result in you or your loving husband wrestling to change a wet sheet in the middle of the night, which sounds less challenging than it really is, considering how tightly fitted crib sheets are designed. Installing two sheets with a waterproof pad inbetween will allow you to simply removed the soiled sheet and pad without even removing the mattress from the crib.

How-not-to-do-it example:  Use only one waterproof pad and one fitted sheet on your baby’s crib.  When he wakes up to a soiled crib sheet and your husband stumbles in to see what he can do to help, give him the task of changing the linens.  Direct him to the drawer where you’ve put the crib sheets, watch as he pulls the mattress out of the crib.  Watch as he flops the mattress around, trying to get the tight, wet (this is a G rated post, despite the diction) sheet off the firm, not-throbbing mattress.   Watch as he throws the mattress on the floor as he tries to get the seemingly tiny new sheet onto the mattress.  Finally, watch as he shoves the mattress back into the crib.  This is how not to do it.

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The Very End of Things

It takes about two weeks for the bleeding to stop, and it teases.  Lighter, lighter, heavier.  That’s right.  Your body is still cleaning itself out.  The reminder of my loss is vivid, bright red.  This is the first blood since before Baby Daddy returned in December.

My body continues to malfunction.  Two weeks after the bleeding ends, just when we’ve renewed our not-yet-marital relations, it starts again.  I want to cry when the blood appears, spill more fluids, because I’m losing all over again.  Sometimes there is a pressure deep in my abdomen, and I wonder–maybe there were two.  But there is no movement, none of those flutterings and gurgles that she’d made.  If I’m not dead inside, I’m at least no longer cradling life.

Six weeks after my hospital visit, I bleed heavily, with clots, and call my doctor.  He has me take the little orchid tablet for which I received a prescription at the hospital, in case of emergencies.

This has happened in the late afternoon, and by the time Baby Daddy, now my husband, gets home, I am barely hiding my hysterics.  At dinner, my head spins and my stomach churns.  I lay down in bed while he reads the drug information.  Then I get crazy.  I laugh hysterically, then weep.  The air around me feels heavy, and when I try to lift my arms from the bed, there is a delay.  Even blinking takes effort.  I hear Baby Daddy on the phone in the kitchen with the pharmacy, talking about bringing me to the hospital. 

“I’m not going anywhere!” I say from the bedroom.

“You’re not supposed to be listening,” he says.  “Are you hallucinating?  They say you might.”

I look around to make sure that the world is as I’ve left it.  It seems so.  “I don’t think so,” I say.

Eventually I calm down, and when the time comes to take another pill, I decline.  The bleeding seems to have slowed.  Baby Daddy holds me to him in bed while I laugh and cry.  He likes to be the white knight to my vulnerability, and I begin to fall asleep feeling his erection on my thigh. 

Before sleep takes me completely, I experience my only hallucination:  the gengle jingle of sleigh bells surrounds the bedroom, drifting in through the open windows, and sings me to sleep.

Baby Daddy wakes up at 5:00 for work, and he makes me get out of bed to be sure I can be left alone.  I feel clearheaded except for sleepiness, and I try to be chatty so he doesn’t insist I go with him to his office.  It works.  He leaves, and I go back to bed, where I am learning to no longer dream of babies.

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