Note to all: if you plan to shake my daughter's hand, give her High-5, or have her hand-feed you a various assortment of foods, please proceed with caution. You just might encounter a substance or smell that is not meant to be on human hands...consider yourself warned.
Shiloh, my 2-year-old princess, has this unique curiosity with taking her hands and placing them down her diaper. I don't think it's a readjustment. I don't even think it's related to anything positive (like scratching an itch, etc.). No, it's just sheer exploration, and wouldn't ya know, it never really happens when she's got a CLEAN pull-up.
Several days over the past few weeks have started with a similar routine. Shiloh enters our bedroom, nearly ready to lovingly pat on my side of the bed to wake me up...when by some Sixth Sense, I instantly rise with the awareness of a puma, the smell of a bear, and the speed of a cheetah. I ask her the question I already know the answer to, and we rush off to her bedroom, all the while trying not to stir mommy.
After the cleansing of booty + hands/fingers, I redress her and do my best attempt at eye contact for what I'm about to say; "Shiloh, we don't put our hands or fingers in our diaper, okay?" She blinks, nods, and responds with a loving "okay" followed by a hug. Sometimes I wonder if my efforts to correct, redirect, and instruct her in things like this really matter. Like, do they really get through to her, or are they a redundant lip service which is to continue until she's 3 or 4?
Today, my daughter amazed me. I'd love to tell you that we have magically arrived at a place of perfect potty-training, and finger-less diaper activity. I'm sorry, that's not the case yet. But Shiloh did manage to set her plush Elmo friend down and instruct him that he did not need to put his hands in his pants. And to that end, his diaper. The red fur ball needed to be informed that this was a no-no.
When my laughter ceased, some strange feelings came over me. Yes, one of the first emotions was a sense of pride in that I realized that my daughter not only listened, but also remembered our instructions to her. In fact, she nearly recited them word for word, applying them that very same day to one of her closest celebrity friends. Ah, I was doing my job, folks.
Then another thought crept into the front of my mind, and it was one that threatened to squash my sense of joy and wonder at Shiloh's reprimand of Elmo. Why did my daughter feel so compelled to listen and know what my desires were for her, yet did not do them? Furthermore, she bypassed herself from responsibility and moved straight to someone I had clearly not cared a lick about their hands in their pants.
Scrambling for understanding, my thoughts turned instantly to a famous quote and a famous verse from Scripture. In one of my top 5 movies of all time, The Matrix, Morpheus lays this statement at Neo's feet: "There is a difference between knowing the path, and walking the path." I love that. I love it even more when I reflect on James 1:22: "Do not merely listen to the word, but do what it says." This is the insight from God that was given me through this most bizarre event with my precious daughter.
So may we all come to obedience with God's desires and instructions for our lives. May we pour out action from our understanding of the great truths of His word. And may we keep our hands out of our poopy diapers.
St. Patrick’s Breastplate
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