I never had any truck with spit-up before. The idea of it has always been super gross. This little human is going to be vomiting up milk onto your clothing. No thanks.

In fact, that was one of the chief reasons I never wanted to hold any of my nephews when they were that age. I don’t want to have to deal with that or any other body fluids.

But becoming a parent changes all of that. It’s not that I enjoy spit-up, it’s just that I don’t mind it. It doesn’t gross me out. He’s mine and I am his. His spit up, somehow, is ours.

And the fact that it gets on your clothes? So what. That’s what washing machines are for. If he spits up on himself, I go and change his clothing — I don’t want the wetness of it to give him a chill. If he spits up on me, I just wipe it off and go on with my day. I’ll go to the grocery store with dried spit-up on my shoulder. I wear it like a badge of honor.

Still, it’s to be avoided. When Finn spits up, it’s usually because of two causes: He either has a gas bubble under what he’s recently eaten or I’ve laid him down (to sleep or to change a diaper) too soon after eating.

To prevent it, I burp him after every couple of ounces (more on that technique later) and I keep him up against my chest for a while after he’s finished eating — 20 or 30 minutes usually works.

O happy living things! no tongue
Their beauty might declare:
A spring of love gushed from my heart,
And I blessed them unaware:
Sure my kind saint took pity on me,
And I blessed them unaware.

–Samuel Taylor Coleridge, “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”

Yesterday was crazy. It certainly felt like I was finding the limits of my energy and patience.

It started off well enough. I got up early to feed the boy. He was sleepy and I didn’t wake him. I figured it was better to wake himself up to eat AND if I could get him to go to 6:30 before eating, then it might time out so that his next feeding is right before we left.

That was the first time I tried to control the events of the day.

Fed him and we hung out during one of his awake periods, which are becoming more frequent and longer in duration.

Taya got up, I cleaned the kitchen and got dinner going in the crockpot. She was holding the baby and shopping online for a rug in his room. I told her twice that I wanted to leave by 10 a.m. and be home by 4 p.m.

That was the second time I tried to control events. I had all sorts of things I wanted to do on my last day of vacation and we had to be back by evening for me to do them.

We didn’t leave until 11. Getting the boy out of the house — with all its attendant feeding, changing and gearing — always takes longer than I think it will. I allotted an hour this time. It took two.

Five minutes down the road, I felt like I was already falling asleep behind the wheel. We stopped at the market for some to-go coffee. More time. Taya spilled hers in the car. More time. More, more, more.

We got to Finn’s birthmom’s house about an hour and a half behind schedule. She is currently living with her grandmother at a senior complex. Grandma wanted to show Finn around to her friends. How could we say no?

The ladies were sweet and didn’t linger uncomfortably, but the whole time I worried about what germs they might be exposing him to. He won’t get his whooping cough vaccine for another six weeks.

We took Ashley to lunch and had a nice time with her, but it was it was already after four when we dropped her back off at home.

Then Taya reminded me that she wanted to go to this out-of-the-way house on the way back to pick up some breast milk that a woman agreed to give us.

This was the first time I realized I could not control events. Parenting seems like it could be disastrous if one insists that a baby stick to their schedule.

It was hard. We spent hours at fast food restaurants and parking lots trying to feed and change the kid in a tiny car stuffed with gear (and then overstuffed with ice and breast milk). We didn’t get home until after 10 p.m. It wasn’t anyone’s fault. It’s just they way things unfolded. I’m glad I was able to let go if my need to control.

One thing about becoming a parent is that you learn about stool. You worry about it, look for it, sometimes pray for it to come out of your baby.

My wife is disappointed that I didn’t do all of the suggested reading before we became parents. When I am surprised by something, she rolls her eyes because it was in one of several books she was urging me to read.

Because of my interrelated lazy and busy states, I could not fit that reading in.

Anyway, the baby’s first poop is something called meconium, and it’s unlike anything seen come out of your body. It’s like tar or molasses — both in color and consistency. It didn’t start coming in until about 24 hours after he was born, and then it was over by about day four.

Next comes what the doctor calls “golden sunshine,” which is a yellow poo that kind of has the consistency and color of stone-ground mustard. It’s strange to see yellow poo. Our son was a little jaundiced at the time, so we fed him as much as we could to help him flush that stuff out.

We switched formulas on the guy when he was having some problems with vomiting, then switched him back. The first formula gave him about one poo per day. The next formula — an expensive, sensitive formula with proteins processed into smaller chains so it is easier to digest — made him poop several times per day. After switching him back, though, he now poops about every 36 hours.

I never thought I would be waiting and watching for poop. We did some reading about it and, like most every other concern, this is “normal.”

The yellow poo has persisted until yesterday. This time it was green. To the Internet! Turns out that color is a function of time.