Confessions of a Work-at-Home Mom: The Poop Cannon

I know it’s the refrain of every new mom, but those first few months after my son was born were hard.

Really hard.

In fact, as I look back on those days and weeks – the ones that seemed to stretch on forever as I oscillated between some of the highest highs and the lowest lows I couldn’t have even imagined to anticipate before our son was born – I realize that they were the most challenging times of my life so far. While we couldn’t comprehend how we could love someone as much as we loved our brand-new child, the transition from a complicated pregnancy to the sleeplessness and constant busyness that is life with a newborn was capital D-Daunting.

But as in all dark times, bright spots appeared to deliver us from our toil. The one that saved us one morning in early spring 2008 just happened to involve a human poop cannon.

It was 6 a.m. My husband had managed to wake up, shower and dress himself for work despite having had less than a couple hours’ worth of sleep. He was a busy man back then. Not only did he hold down a job at a company that had taken on a contract that required him to be at his desk no less than 60 hours each week, but he was also taking eight hours’ worth of engineering course work at our local community college.

Add to that a wife who had not only started back to work full time as a reporter for a local paper but had also decided it’d be an hilarious experiment to try to squeeze her required eight hours each day into the slivers of time that existed before the baby woke up each morning, while the baby napped in the morning and the afternoon and at night after the baby went to bed instead of hiring a daycare and working in an office 9-5.

Mix all of this gently with a baby who wasn’t a big fan of sleep and you have a dude who is stressed as all get out.

It just so happens that this recipe is also a great starter base for the dreaded Morning Fight.

We were frustrated that our schedules couldn’t seem to line up for even a mere five minutes so we could work in a good, old-fashioned make-out session on the couch, and that morning didn’t prove to be an exception. We couldn’t stop our frenzy of feeding and bathing and dressing our baby long enough to have a proper fight or else one of us would have ended up late for this or that all-important whatever.

We hovered over our son on the changing table, exchanging our harsh words and having our fight through smiles of gritted teeth and in voices that could have charmed Chucky himself.

And that’s when it happened. While my husband attempted to work one of my son’s tiny diapers under his tiny hiney while trying to keep his voice from cracking with rage, a little poop shot out of our son and landed, but where else, right on the belly of my husband’s nicest dress shirt.

And it stuck.

My husband put his chin on his chest and stared. I stared, too. Our son cooed and kicked his fat little legs, seemingly unaware that he’d fired a full-on rectal projectile.

And then my husband and I laughed. We laughed for a long time. And then we hugged for the first time in probably weeks.

And it was all thanks to our baby-shaped poop cannon of love, laughter and probably too much sweet potato puree.

Photo by Ashley Heider-Daly

Categories: Tasha Does Tulsa