Thursday, April 4, 2013

Bath Time (Revisited).

When Sidney was just over a month old, we discussed the ins and outs of bathing an infant. As you may recall (translation: I needed a transitional opening), the "ins" were having a clean baby, and the "outs" included wedging the baby-bathtub in the sink, water splashing all over you, him peeing everywhere and the ever-present threat of poop in the baby-bathtub.  It's been over a year now, and I thought it might be time to report in on how bath time goes these days.  The biggest change is that we no longer use a baby-bathtub.  Once Sidney started sitting up on his own, we pretty much had to move the baby-bathtub from the sink to inside one of our bathtubs out of sheer fear that the now sitting/leaning soaped-up child would manage to fall out of the thing and tumble from sink to kitchen floor.  The baby-tub in the big-tub didn't last very long, as our boy went from sitting to pulling himself up very quickly (not to mention getting too tall to even fit in the baby-tub).  So with the worry advancing to him tripping out of the baby-tub and going face/head first into the big tub, he graduated to just the big tub.  End of story?  HA.

How do you keep a very active child relatively (key word) still in a huge bath tub long enough to bathe him?  Toys.  Lots of toys.  With his graduation to the full tub came filling the tub with water friendly toys.  Foam letters, bath-time friends, bubble makers (who are we kidding, these should just be called "child re-soapers") and anything else remotely water-proof.  Heck, Nana was crazy enough to put a water-table in one of her showers for him (more on this shortly).  Bathtub full of toys, bathing is now a snap, right?  HA AGAIN!

As I have mentioned previously, Sidney is a full on standing, walking, mobile platform of mayhem.  Putting him in the bathtub changes none of this.  You sit him in the tub, he stands up.  By a miracle he sits back down and you pour water over him to start the actual bathing ... he stands up.  You start lathering his hair ... he stands up and tries to grab something.  You try to wash his body ... he stands up, actually grabs something and then throws it out of the tub.  Basically, at any given moment you have a wet, soapy, slippery child trying his best to wriggle his way around, across and/or out of the bathtub for no other reason than he can.  The phrase "Sidney please sit down.  SIT!" is uttered so often during bath time that our neighbors must think we have a recalcitrant dog in the apartment that is only awake between 7 and 7:30pm.  My Wife does her best to wash him, essentially one-handed, but on several occasions we've had to work together to get the job done.  That's right, the answer to the question "how many college educated adults does it take to give a toddler a bath" is "at least two."  

When he isn't playing one-man Marco Polo in the tub, he is usually trying his damndest to get everything that is inside the tub out.  Toys, wash cloths (this one is fun), cups, the water.  All of it flying over the side.  It is no surprise that once he's been soaped and rinsed My Wife generally announces "ok, you're on Daddy's watch now"; this is usually immediately followed by him throwing a soaking wet washcloth at me and splashing at me until I am as soaked as he.  This, or he stands up and proceeds to pee into the bathtub.  I comfort myself with the notion that he's practicing for potty-training.  Which brings us to Nana's water table.  Just when we thought "poop in the tub" was a thing of the past, as Sidney stood in Nana's shower during a recent visit, playing merrily with his water table, he pooped.  Just standing there.  He stopped what he was doing for a second and pooped right in her shower.  The next night?  He did it again.  The third night?  We put him in the shower with his diaper.  Hey, poop in the shower once, shame on you ... third time you're in a diaper; or something.

I guess the takeaway from all of this is that the "ins" of bathing a toddler are having a clean toddler, and the "outs" include a soaped up child trying to escape your grasp, water going everywhere, him peeing in the bathtub and a turd in Nana's shower.  Progress!


  1. Unfortunately I can actually say pooping in the shower apparently isn't limited to precocious toddlers... just ask any number of contractors/military personnel about phantom shower poops.

    1. For a second I was going to say I didn't know which was worse, a phantom poop, or watching the poop happened. Then I realized we were discussing a full grown adult poop in your scenario ... that's way worse.

    2. It definitely wasn't a pleasant surprise at 6am during the winter when you just walked 100ft through 1ft of snow to even get to the shower.