Infants might look completely Innocent and sweet, and before I had the Herd, I thought they were defenseless. I was wrong- WAY wrong. If you stop and think, you can probably think of ways that your kids are able to bring you to your knees, too... both literally and figuratively. No one warned me about the Weapons of BabyHood! Here are some of the ones that I've encountered in my eight years of motherhood:
1) Baby Headbutting- Have you ever been nuzzling a little one's nose when all of a sudden they went all Chuck Norris on your face? In one quick motion they can whiplash their little heads backwards and then forwards before an adult can even blink, let alone move herself out of harm's way. I've had this happen to me so many times that I've come to the conclusions that baby humans are a lot like baby goats... and I have the scars to prove it.
2) Demon Talons (Baby fingernails)- Dear Lord! Have you ever been clawed by the razor-sharp fingernails of a new baby?? I've had actually shaving accidents that hurt less. On top of the sharp, pain-inflicting issue, they are dang near impossible to cut without hurting the baby (and thereby making yourself cry, both because you feel bad for hurting your baby and because you can't stand any more crying). The cutting process is also headache-inducing, because you have to squint and focus your eyes on the transparent talons to even see them well enough to do the job, all while your baby kicks, screams and tries to wrestle away. Baby fingernail talons are the DEVIL.
3) The Shriek of Fury As any parent will tell you, there are multiple KINDS of crying that come out of a baby, and they are sound different, indicating different situations and needs. One of the varieties in the crying repertoire is The Shriek of Fury. All parents know this sound... this occurs when a baby is hellaciously MAD- So mad that their tiny heads turn red with fury, causing the parent's heart to sink into his or her stomach, knowing it's going to be a pain in the rear to diffuse this mess. For added fun, this sound can cause car wrecks if it starts up while you're driving. Good times.
4) Diapers of Doom If you're a parent and never experienced a diaper blowout, I both kind of hate you, and I pity you, because it's coming. These gastric explosions usually smell like death, look even worse, and are so forceful in nature that they escape the mess-containing confines of the diaper. They've always left me wondering how something so foul could cone out of something so sweet and adorable, as I curse the makers of diapers for not figuring out a way to prevent these... I mean we can put a man on the moon but not prevent THIS?? The baby smiles because he feels better after expelling said nastiness, and also basks in the satisfaction of getting you back for taking away the fingernail clippers he wanted to put in his mouth.
5) Geysering Genitalia Changing a little baby boy's diaper is always a gamble... you never know if you'll be showered with pee as soon as the diaper is removed or if you'll safely complete the Pampers re-application unscathed. There are ways to limit the likelihood of getting sprayed in the eyes (yes, I speak from experience), but it doesn't eliminate the risk of being attacked by his Super-Soaker. Diaper changes were so much easier when I gave birth to the girls... unless it was a poop diaper. Then I wished I was changing a boy diaper.
6) Sudden Spit-up It never fails that when you think the baby is happily full, adequately burped and free of diaper issues that he or she will began to bubble up like oil did from the ground in the <em>Beverly Hillbillies</em>. Partially digested milk goes all over their faces, gets in their hair, soils their clothing and -IF YOU'RE REALLY LUCKY- gets all over YOU as well. If the baby's goal was to enjoy another bath that evening or desired a wardrobe change (how DARE you make him wear a lamb onesie!), his strategy was successful.
7) Midnight Alarm Just when you think the baby is finally asleep, which means YOU can finally go to sleep, you learn the truth. YOU CAN NEVER SLEEP. Babies, being the adorable slave drivers that they are, will wake you when they need something, regardless of the hour. They might even just sound the alarm to wake you just to say "Hi"... they like to keep you on your toes.
8) Nipple Nipping Yep... this one is exactly what it sounds like. Breastfeeding mothers will cringe and the thought of this "weapon", because if they've ever nursed a baby with a tooth or two, chances are they've been nipped. On the Nipple. In many cases, blood will be drawn... those baby teeth are sharp. Whether it's out of impatience over a slow milk let-down or just a less than gentle reminder from the baby that they have you by the tender parts, these technique is effective for retaining their role as a tiny dictator.
No one told me that they'd be the ones calling the shots,,, but all four of my babies knew how to make my heart soar... and my forehead sore from all that headbutting.