I’ve had one of my own for as long as I can remember. I have always looked at it fondly. Now I look at it and think, “This damn thing was a hazard 29 years ago.”
Changing a diaper can be a very different experience depending on what type of plumbing you’re working with. Girls have nice interior plumbing. It’s contained, well-organized and makes for an easier clean-up for both number ones and number twos. Boys have exposed plumbing. It’s out there, it’s unpredictable and it has a tendency to spring leaks.
As long as you have the baby girl on a changing pad, there is little risk to you. Worst case scenario is that a little pee drips on the pad. No big deal. Throw that bad boy in the wash and that’s the extent of your clean-up. Easy, peasy, lemon squeezy.
Boys? You have to be faster than a NASCAR pit crew. You have to have all your tools (wipes, bags, towels, diaper, clothes) at the ready. There is no time to leave him exposed. No time to double-back for something. It’s a ticking time bomb. You can’t hesitate. You need to get in and get out, fast.
You also need to face the facts. If you have a boy, you will get peed on. Let me say that again so it sinks in. If you have a boy you WILL get peed on. Your only hope is that he doesn’t get you in the face. Oh he can. Don’t think boys don’t have range. Vinny has mad range. He seems to be able to pee farther than Tom Brady can throw a football. From his changing table he can easily hit the wall that is at least four or so feet away. I’ve seen it spray up past Michelle’s head. So pee in the mouth or in the eye or up the nose is a very real, and very disturbing, possibility.
It’s also very unpredictable. It doesn’t just spray in one direction. If you duck the first pee arc, you’re not out of the woods yet. It acts sort of like a out-of-control fire hose, just whipping around to and fro.
Your best bet to stay dry once the levies break is to run out of the room and let it happen. Come back when it’s over and assess the mess and clean-up. You’re going to be cleaning up pee regardless, so you might as well do it without being peed on first.
But we parents of male babies don’t run for it. No we don’t. What do we do instead? We hold out our hands and try to catch/deflect the pee. All that does is create more splash. The only good thing about that tactic is that chances are the baby will get some pee back splash as well. I know that sounds mean, but screw him, if you’re going to be covered in pee, he should be too. You’re wiping him down anyway, so what’s a few extra wipe sheets?
Also, it’s not just the range and unpredictability of the pee, it’s the volume. Even though you may be changing a full diaper, there is always plenty more at the ready. It’s never just a quick gush of pee that squirts out. No, no, no. It’s a damn geyser. A mass volume of warm, yellow liquid.
Vinny’s latest pee shooting came after a nice long ‘draught’. He went weeks without making us into human urinals. I guess he was waiting for us to let our guard down because it was also his worst pee episode to date.
Michelle was changing him on the couch (Michelle is usually the main victim) and I was in the kitchen (I am usually in the kitchen). I hear screams of “oh my God!”, “Oh no!”, “Make it stop!” and come running in. Michelle is in full pee deflection mode as I throw a towel over the offending area.
My efforts were too little, too late. Michelle was drenched. The couch was drenched. Frasier too caught some splash. Pee was everywhere. On toys, on pillows, on clothes, on the rug and just all over the couch. Vinny managed to actually pee behind himself. We had to actually shampoo the couch. There were puddles. Michelle was covered up to her neck. She never stood a chance.
Vinny could offer no condolences and only gave a small grin. Impressive? Yes, but heartless to say the least.
Before Vinny was born, Michelle and I were buying some baby boy things. You know, preparing for his arrival. We came across a product called the PeePee TeePee. It states on the package, “Just place a pee-pee teepee on his wee-wee during diaper changes, and the hazard is averted.”
We laughed, put it back and moved on. We said to each other, “What type of loser parent would use that? You would probably be one of those weirdo, over-protective types.” We still wouldn’t buy them (why pay for something that a hand towel can do), but we now understand why there is the need for them.
Like most parents, we learned that lesson the hard way.