Happy Birthday, Fuss

My (no longer so) little man turns four today.

This blog has about 3/4ths of a big Father's Day post lodged in its gullet, which seems to be the fate of any post that takes more than one sitting's worth of attention, or anything that strays a level beyond the obvious, so in the interest of CONTENT I'll be keeping the focus of this one as narrow as I can without losing the attention of my six or so dedicated readers.

So, here are some things that have happened.

Playing at a park, I had to explain to some girls that he doesn't read yet because he's only three (which he technically was at that point).  His size throws a lot of people off.  Later, they were up at the top of a slide and he was rattling off some of his ridiculously advanced vocabulary (Purloined?  Really, Fuss?) and the little girl said to her friends "He can't read yet, but he's smarter than a book!"

In spite of our intense wish that he enjoy a nice, average mainstream childhood-to-young-adulthood, it just doesn't look promising.

One, he's huge.
Two, his hair is really red.
Three, it's becoming increasingly clear that he's left handed.
Four, he's hilarious in a way that slays his parents and their friends, but often leaves other children confused &/or angry.

So he's eventually going to be this left handed, red headed giant with a worldview that maybe five people out of a hundred understand.

Uh, sorry Fuss- our bad!

Potty training continues on its steady but frustratingly slow pace.
I had a dream that he'd just decide he'd had enough of diapers one day and that would be it- and it could  have gone that way.  But it hasn't, and it's really aggrivating.  Around the house he's pretty good- he's been (mostly) pooping on the potty in the mornings and evenings.  But there are hitches- like the other night, when he snuck into the closet, pulled down his underwear and left a big log in the wife's slipper.

But out in the wild, he just wants to wear a diaper.  It ties in directly with a discussion the wife had with him when we were first introducing the idea of the potty.  She was explaining the situation, and he was listening, but the seemingly postitive discussion ended with him saying "I want to wear my dipey...IT'S MY CHOICE." then giving her the stone face.

Yesterday we were rolling around Costco, and he was sitting in basket of the cart looking through a book.  Suddenly it was "Dada, don't look at me!" which is code for I'M GOING TO POOP!  

Trying to head off an unpleasant al fresco diaper change, I presented an option- "do you want to go on the potty?  They have a bathroom here, I can take you there."


Okay, okay, sheesh.

So we're rolling around Costco,  and he's holding his book up between us covering his face so I can't see it except we're surrounded by a billion other people cruising for samples and buying truck-bed sized flats of toilet paper.

But as long as I can't see him, he's alone in the world.

We checked out and headed for the car, where my emergency kit sat in the trunk- a full box of wipeys, several diapers and a complete change of clothes.  The situation is bleak, but I'm prepared.

It's a complete mudslide, of course.
"Okay Fuss, this one is really messy so I need you to HOLD STILL and cooperate, okay?"
"Okay dada!"

The first thing he did was drop one leg RIGHT in the middle of it.  Then while I was cleaning that up he stuck his other foot in it.  Once I got both of those under control, he reeeeached down and grabbed his own poop covered butt.

In situations like this being angry doesn't accomplish anything.
This doesn't stop you from flipping out, of course- with Fuss I often find myself sitting on my own shoulder marveling at what a botch I'm making of things.  It doesn't help in the moment, but it's handy later on when the crisis has passed and I need to apologize.

Once I got a new diaper on and changed his pants I had a disaster of a diaper and a mound of poopy wipes the size of a small dog sitting on the asphalt and nowhere to put it.  Checked the trunk for a plastic bag or other receptacle- nearest thing was a medium USPS flat rate Priority Mail box.

"Why not, they're free!" I thought.
Folded it together, stuffed all the (literal) crap inside and sealed it up.

On the ride home Fuss had something he wanted to tell me.

"Dada, do babies wear diapers?"
"Yeah, Fuss, babies wear diapers."
"And big boys don't wear diapers?"
"No, big boys don't really wear diapers."
He thought about this.
"Well," he eventually said, "sometimes big boys are babies."
"You know what Fuss?  That's true."

 Happy 4th birthday to my smart, beautiful, wise, amazing boy.

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