My Long Day As A Stay-At-Home Dad
With newborns around the house, going to work is much easier than staying home. That’s a fact. Indeed, I’d take 8 hours in corporate America over 8 hours at home with crying babies any day.**
** I realized this last year on Memorial Day – a “work holiday”. I spent my time at home, changing diapers and feeding hungry babies. Awesome holiday.
So. I have no desire to be a stay-at-home dad. But this week, both kids are really sick (fever, cold, croup cough…). Normally, the kids spend Friday with Jackie’s mom, but these sick babies are more than one person can handle. I have plenty of leave, so I offered to stay at home with Jimmy while my mother-in-law has Riley. Basically, for the first time ever, I am testing out what it’s like to be a stay-at-home dad. Oh boy, here we go…
8:25am: this is where the story begins. Jackie is on her way out the door with Riley, and I am watching SportsCenter for the second time (because Jimmy is already comfortable and if I reach for the remote, I put this whole seating arrangement in jeopardy).
8:50am: Apparently this Jeremy Lin guy on the New York Knicks is kind-of-a-big-deal. They have been talking about him the entire time. People know him.
9:15am: Jimmy falls asleep in my lap, so I take him upstairs and put him in his crib. Phew! I make some coffee, and then head to the bathroom where I notice Riley unrolled the entire roll of toilet paper onto the bathroom floor before she left. I tell myself I will clean it later (manspeak for: “I’ll let my wife pick it up”).
9:20am: I grab the book I’ve been meaning to read, Gates of Fire. Seems pretty cool. At least the first page does…
9:21am: Jimmy starts crying. Looks like this won’t be much of a nap. I put the book down (promising myself I will read it later) and grab Jimmy.
9:30am: I realize the TV options are terrible. I have no desire to watch the news or House Hunters International, but I see that The Price is Right will be on at 11. I can’t wait.
10:00am: I check Jimmy’s temperature. While I wait for the thermometer to do its thing, the song “Because of You” by 98 Degrees randomly pops into my head. What a great song! Unfortunately for Jimmy, his temperature is 102 Degrees – four degrees higher than Nick Lachey would prefer. Bummer.
10:05am: I give Jimmy some baby Motrin. It doesn’t taste good, so I let him chase it down with some milk. To date, the “chaser” concept is the only thing I learned in college that has been of any use as a parent. I’ll let you know when that changes…
10:10am: Jimmy is making fart sounds with his mouth. So proud of him!
10:20am: I change Jimmy’s diaper and begin watching “Matlock.” It’s been about a decade since I have seen this show. But aside from maybe Elle Woods, no lawyer can fish out a courtroom confession like this guy. Period.
10:25am: Jimmy – standing completely still – is grunting and his face is bright red (which means poop). Now it smells bad. Real bad. Like, “bits of real panther” bad.
Note: in case you haven’t noticed, I just made my second “Anchorman” reference. Looks like I’m gonna have to run with this…
10:30am: a commercial comes on for guaranteed acceptance life insurance, and the next one is for the Scooter Store. Gee, I wonder what age group they think is watching this show!
10:34am: After just 15 minutes of viewing time, I think I have determined who the killer is on Matlock. I make my hypothesis by applying the Dwight Shrute Doctrine of Killer Prediction…
For those who are unfamiliar, the Shrute Doctrine posits that the killer is never the person you most suspect, and it’s also never the person you least suspect. Indeed, the killer is always the person you most MEDIUM suspect!
Well, I most medium suspect the owner of the pool at which the murder took place, but I also medium suspect the brother of the victim. It definitely isn’t Matlock’s client (whom the show would have me suspect the most).
10:58am: Yep! It was the pool owner. I “medium suspected” him all along. Thank you, Dwight Shrute.
11:00am: Jimmy has fallen asleep in my lap and I really need to go to the bathroom. This is typical.
Note: when sitting with babies, I usually find myself in one of three scenarios: (1) I am incredibly comfortable but the baby is squirmy, (2) the baby is comfortable but my back is killing me, (3) the baby is comfortable and I really need to go to the bathroom. Well, here I was in Category 3.
11:20am: Jimmy goes in his crib for a nap. Epic Succeed!
11:30am: I decide to DVR The Price is Right so I can watch the Tom Crean Show (head coach, IU basketball). I think back to Dwight Shrute and realize he resembles Tom Crean, at least slightly. I’ll let you decide: