When I was growing up cartoons were an excuse, really, for the parents to sleep in. The kids had a distraction, they could survive on cereal, and only once did I almost burn the house down when the toast got stuck in the toaster and I was too wrapped up in Mighty Mouse to notice.
But as an adult, I’m not much for sleeping in. And with an adult baby in the house, I would have even less reason to do so: Saturdays can be such an incredibly special day with a little guy around and I would hardly want to miss the fun.
(A nap in the afternoon after I put in him in his crib for one of his own is another matter).
But I’ve been thinking about Saturday around the house, and while it would be fun to let a son sit around in his sleeper watching cartoons, I think there are some other ways to make him feel that he really is daddy’s special little guy.
Waking Up for a Baby Saturday
Maybe you wake a little later on a Saturday. You didn’t fall asleep right away.
Weekends always leave you with a little tingle of anticipation. Sometimes you and daddy have talked about the weekend plans, and sometimes it’s all up to him – when he tells you that “It’s a weekend for my special little guy” you know it’s in his hands and you feel safe and a little excited.
Maybe you’ll be going out somewhere like to a movie or the zoo. Or maybe you’ll have lots of time in your playpen with your toys and stuffed animals.
You hear noises from the other rooms – daddy’s up to something and it doesn’t sound like his usual clattering around in the kitchen.
You feel rested, snug and secure. When you know you have a whole weekend ahead of being cared for, the crib feels like an incredibly special place – you know daddy will come and get you soon and that leaving the crib will just be the start of being who you are: a very special little baby boy.
So you enjoy curling and stretching and moving about your crib a little, the crinkle of the sheets, the mobile overhead, the baby monitor attached to the side, and a damp diaper slightly squishy under you.
When daddy comes to get you there’s a little gurgle of excitement. You look in his eyes to see if you can guess what he has planned for you, but you’re also just happy to see him.
He lowers the bars of the crib and leans down to give you a little snuggle. His hand gently squeezes your diaper – wet but not too soaked, he decides you can probably survive through breakfast, and inside you get a secret little thrill – you can’t explain why, but you don’t mind wearing your night diaper a little longer.
Breakfast for the Adult Baby
Now, not every little guy needs a high chair. But maybe you do – and the day starts off with you being securely strapped into the high chair with the tray fixed firmly in place.
You feel dad slip behind you and bring a bib up in front and then secure it at the back. You glance down and grin at the cute patterns and then grin again as dad places a bottle filled with juice on your tray which you happily suckle on as daddy goes to get food.
Saturday breakfasts are always something a little special. Sometimes it’s kid cereal like Coco Puffs in a brightly colored plastic bowl. Sometimes it’s French toast with lots of messy syrup and daddy cutting up your food for you and feeding you.
Today it might be pancakes shaped in your initials with a little side tray of fruits, and daddy lets you (try to) eat on your own.
(Abandoning the spoon probably wasn’t such a good idea, your syrupy hands and messy face are testament to that, but daddy smirks a little before wiping you with a warm cloth).
Time to Change
Now, one of the many mysteries of little boys is the little tingly feeling towards the end of a meal: you feel a spreading warmth in your diaper which spreads along your bum. You’ve been in daddy’s care for a while now and don’t always realize when you wet. In fact, it’s often daddy’s diaper checks that make you aware you’ve used your diaper.
This morning, you sense it only as the diaper starts to feel even squishier under your bum. The fun breakfast, the bottle of juice, your messy face and hands, and now the spreading warmth of your diaper give you a shy, gurgling feeling inside that you can’t quite name.
Daddy seems to notice a little flicker in your eyes and slides a hand down to your diaper area. The squeeze is met with a soggy diaper and he tousles your hair.
This makes you feel happy – daddy knows your diaper is wet and he smiled reassuringly before getting you out of the high chair and takes you back to the nursery for a change.
Getting you cleaned up feels nice, like it’s the start of a fresh new day – and a Saturday! You start to get a little flutter of excitement as daddy chooses a diaper for you from the stacks – you giggle happily as you see it’s not a day diaper but is a big thick crinkly diaper with babyish prints.
Somehow as he tapes you up, the thickness between your legs, how it rides up high on your waist, and then the super-crinkly plastic pants leave you feeling a little floppy in your limbs and happy – it’s clearly going to be baby time with daddy. When he chooses a soft Winnie the Pooh shirt (which barely comes down to your waist) and attaches a paci by a little ribbon your mind starts shifting to playpens and maybe extra long naps in your crib.
But daddy has other plans.
Today, you and daddy are going on a journey without ever leaving the house. Daddy will leave you in just your diaper for much of the day. Although you love your sailor suits and shortalls, there’s something really special about being in just a diaper and t-shirt sometimes, especially when you’re spending lots of time with daddy.
You feel as if your diaper crinkles more loudly. You know that when you wet or mess daddy can see and somehow this makes you proud. And wearing just your diaper puts you in a playful mood in which you love crawling, being-tickled and play-wrestling.
Your journey with daddy today includes diaper changes, sippy cups or bottles, breaks for little fun snacks, and sometimes little quiet moments where you just can’t help leaning over to get a hug.
It also includes adventures:
– Building a blanket fort with daddy and then hiding in it with all your stuffed animals and pretending you’re in the deep jungle
– Grabbing crayons and sheets of paper and working with daddy to write a letter to civilization about your adventures in the wilds of the Amazon
– Daddy grabs an old Polaroid camera and you take pictures inside your blanket fort and make up a story about how you and your animals had an adventure. You and dad take the photos after and put them in a special album he got just for you.
– You get to eat lunch INSIDE the fort! Daddy grins and says it’s OK that you got peanut butter and jam all over your shirt and that there are crumbs in the blanket fort. I guess he knew it was going to happen.
– Daddy surprises you by pulling out a box of puppets, and you and he act out your voyage across the sea towards civilization.
– Pretending that your ship gets stranded on a deserted island, you sit down and make a list of all the things you’d want with you. You draw pictures of what your tree house would look like.
One of the best things about the day is that daddy keeps you in super-thick diapers. Maybe he adds some plastic pants – the ones he got that make such a loud crinkling sound it makes you giggle.
After your afternoon nap, you have some quiet time with daddy. He feeds you a bottle and cradles you and cuddles you. He reads you stories of other little boy’s adventures but after each story he says “But YOU had the biggest adventures of all.”
The day ends with a movie – The Lion King, maybe.
As daddy bathes you and gets you ready for bed, you lie on your change table as he slips on your sleeper and think:
“I didn’t have to imagine ANYTHING. It may feel a lot like dreaming but I’m sure happy to be daddy’s special Saturday baby and that all this is real.”