When the firstborn first came home my wife and I spent two solid weeks together just holding the baby, learning about him and watching the entire series run of Scrubs. It was a quiet existence. We took turns watching over the little guy and completing little chores.
All the firstborn wanted to do was be held and learn to smile. It was a peaceful life.
Baby two has been a… different experience.
In the newborn’s life there has always been background noise. There has always been a high pitched voice asking why questions. Always had an adult saying, “please don’t throw that.” For the newborn, there has never been a quiet moment sitting with mom and dad while we laugh at JD’s crazy antics and work for a Turk and Carla level relationship. His time has not been quiet and peaceful.
I have to remind myself of this whenever we go to change him into his day clothes. When I put him on that changing table he is fighting the new clothes or diaper, he is just really afraid of missing out on something.
When his back hits the changing table it is like putting food in a fryer. The two elements are just dandy on their own. They sit at relative rest apart, but the second they combine there is a reaction instant, explosive and impossible to control. At least with fried food there’s a delicious reward. With the baby it’s a lot of pleading for compliance and adult crying, unpleasant all around.
The baby’s favorite thing when getting on the changing table is to look behind him. He contorts, twists and jumbles himself in every possible manner. An adult does this and they’re likely being identified by next of kin. Babies just pull out these demonic possession moves like they’re second nature.
The newborn just wiggles around with his head bent backward, body halfway turned over and feet pointing straight up. He’s looking for his brother. It would be cute if not for the diaper situation.
If he so chooses, he will hit the changing table and as the adult blinks he will flip himself over and leap for the edge of the table with the force of a grasshopper. Like some sort of Weeping Angel version of a lemming. He’s fast. The firstborn would rest on the changing table and stare lovingly at us. New guy is constantly ready for a party.
I have learned that clapping above his head is a great help in keeping him in one spot for longer than a second. If that fails, singing that Zeppelin song about Vikings works. Should that fail, do car alarm sounds. If that fails, Princess Bride style shrieking eel sounds do wonders. And if that fails I have to confuse him with my Elvis impression. The kid has object permanence down, but change your voice and his eyebrows scrunch up in a flash.
Second kids are a completely different beast. Terribly fun, lots of excitement, but I am pretty sure this kid is going to kill me one day.