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It took around 8 weeks for Tyler to learn how to smile. He got that trait, presumably, from seeing Sarah and I smile at him. All. The. Time.
How is it, then, that Tyler – and, I would assume, all babies – has pouting built right into his genetic code? It’s one of those “pre-programmed” things that guarantees that he’s going get whatever it is that he wants. He was completely passive about everything the day he was born. I thanked the Lord up above for giving us a calm, quiet baby. Twenty-four hours later, I cursed the devil-nurse that gave Tyler his first (sponge)bath. It was then that Tyler realized that his lungs served another purpose than merely providing oxygen to his blood vessels and, in turn, life to his body. Thanks to this she-spawn of Satan, Tyler discovered the art of crying. I just want to pass along a little nugget of information to all of you. Babies do not cry, they scream. Tyler has cried fewer times than the number of fingers I have on one hand. One such crying incident was yesterday, and it was COMPLETELY my fault; I’ll blog about that later. He has screamed loads of times, though.
Let’s get back to what this nurse – who managed to stand up straight, despite the fact that she had no spine, and had a small, black heart, completely devoid of love and compassion – and what she did to my son. His cryscreams were quiet, almost cute, but I knew what they would become as his lungs matured, and it scared me. This nurse… This… This… This… Devil incarnate, has the nerve, the AUDACITY, to tell me that it’s good when babies cry because it opens their lungs and clears out the mucous in their throats. Hogwash!! I laid witness, not 24 hours earlier, to an amazing surgery – a surgery where I saw parts of my wife that I never wanted to see – which swiftly disproved the “a stork delivers a baby to your porch” myth, and you’re telling me that you can’t just stick a turkey baster down his throat and suck all that crap out, effectively negating the need for crying? I say again, hogwash.
What was I saying? Oh, crying. In the moments before he unleased about 95db of ear piercing goodness, Tyler had a blank face, completely content with everything he had experienced thus far. My face was about 10 inches from Tyler’s face. When the wet, soapy devil-rag was pressed against his belly, he looked at me – still blank faced – for about another second. Then, his bottom lip started to push out and the corners of his mouth drew down into a pout.
I can tell you, with absolute certainty, that Tyler had not seen a single frown nor pout while “on the outside”. I’m slightly less so, but still fairly certain that he had not seen those looks on the inside either. Therefore, he somehow knew how to pout without ever seeing it done before.
Most people would then deduce that smiles are a learned trait, and frowns/pouts are an instinctual trait. Luckily for you, my brain doesn’t work like most peoples’. Through my superhuman logic and powers of observation, I now know the truth, and am ready to pass it along.
I submit to you, dear reader, that frowns, pouts, AND smiles are as instinctual as breathing or swallowing. I submit to you that if your baby didn’t start smiling until 8 weeks after birth, maybe he or she just wasn’t happy until that point. Ever think of that?