I cradled his head and arms while his Daddy got his legs, and we hosed off his junk to remove the explosive poo that had gotten seemingly everywhere but his face. This move isn't something they teach you in childbirth and newborn courses; it's an audible you call when the shit that goes down isn't in the playbook, and this time, the shit literally went down.
In class we learned how to create a birth plan and to be flexible about it, which we were, and as it turned out, had to be, but I'll expand on John's delivery in another post. We weren't prepared, however, for the fact that our son would spend only a few hours as a "well baby" and over a week as a "sick baby" in the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). As harrowing as the Ass Dangle may sound, it's a far cry easier than changing and feeding your newborn --let alone hold him--when he's covered in wires attached to machines and spending his days and nights toasting in a bread warmer.
The doctors aren't exactly sure what caused the hypoglycemia and subsequent seizure that kept John in the NICU for a week. While specialists and nurses scrambled to get his nutrients in check, his Dad and I traveled back and forth to the hospital everyday to visit him, scrubbing up and donning johnnies to hold him, change him, and feed him until we were kicked out at night just to do it all over again the next day. The experience was, in a word, rough, with many ups and downs along the way. But gallows humor, support from family, friends, and the expertise of hospital staff got us through-- and John out of there-- finally.
This episode clearly tarnished the shine of being a first-time mother a bit and prevented me from blogging like I had intended to, but what's important is that he's home now, a "well baby," healthy and happy, eating, sleeping, and crapping--and looking impossibly cute doing it-- like a champion. And tonight, when we were confronted with another one of baby's renegade doo doo bombs, his Daddy's instincts kicked in, and he cut off the bottom of John's onesie to remedy the situation--again, another off-the-cuff idea. And for now, all's well in Babytown. More soon, I promise.