We’re not ones for gimmicky baby stuff. I think, in the grand scheme of things, we live with very few baby essentials, of which I am quite proud.
Which is why, before Samson was born, we followed our midwife’ s no-nonsense advice and didn’t get a ramp style newborn tub ($30, left).
Instead, we got a simple, old style, baby tub ($8, right).
No frills. It’s just white, with a lip to lift it, and a place to put soap, if you like. It’s great. It was perfect for the “swaddle baths” we gave Samson as a newborn, so he could be completely under the water and didn’t get cold. [FYI: totally the best tip on how to bathe your baby. I will tell you about it if you want.]
Samson’s now 5 1/2 months, and about 20 lbs. He’s a brute. He likes to splash. He has outgrown his baby bathtub, and he has long outgrown his “bucket bath” (a.k.a. a square bowl I usually use for dishwashing while camping, but is now used for those times when a wipe just won’t do).
Being people who don’t like spending money on unnecessary items, we first tried the infant bathtub in the big tub. I don’t know if our tub is super low or what, but it just was not comfortable. Hubby couldn’t even lift Samson out of the tub because his centre of gravity was all off. And seeing as Samson still can’t really sit on his own, it was hard to keep a handle on him. So I reluctantly took a trip to Toys R Us to see what I could spend some money on to make our lives easier. I had heard about blow up tubs and suction cup seats and blow up seats and over the edge tubs and no slip mats–basically, I was led to believe there would be a bunch of options.
What Toys R Us actually offers amounts to not much. They have a plethora of infant style slings, and ramps and all that stuff that I already decided was not for us, and was glad I never spent money on. Besides, they’re all for tiny babies, which Samson is not.
The only other option is the much-talked-about-on-Apartment-Therapy Hoppop:
Sure, it’s beautiful, but it’s 70 bucks. Do I really need to be spending 70 bucks for something that’s going to last Samson another 3 or 4 months? Not really. A friend of mine offered to lend me her blow up tub, but when I hear about blow up anything, I immediately think *insert guilty mom conscience here*: What Would Twwly or Lallydone do? I’ll tell you what they’d do. They wouldn’t buy a PVC bathtub, that’s for sure! *tsk tsk tsk*
So, we went the 100% granola (free) route, and I now get into the big tub with Samson. It’s cute, it doesn’t take that long, and it also gives me a chance to perform that sacred European wash-up-before-bed ritual. Still, while it’s great that I can bond with my baby and all, sometimes it would be nice not to have to sit up to my navel in a tub of water that while not cold, is definitely not up to my bathtime standards. Also, I have De Quervain’s, so most of the time while I’m holding Samson, I’m imagining my wrists finally giving out, him slipping under the water and having his first experience inhaling a mouthful of water. So yesterday I started researching online. Options! Lots of them. What’s going on? And then I found this notice from Safe Kids Canada, and it all fell into place.
Allow me to digress for a moment; I promise this will lead back to my point. When we first got Addie, our coonhound, we were reluctant to try her off-leash. Our reasoning was, we didn’t want to be the dopes who let their hound off her leash and then were surprised she ran away. Same as, sure, in an emergency, or when you’re tired, you could totally accept your friend’s offer of a drive home and hold your baby on your lap because probably nothing is going to happen. But if it does, do you really want to be explaining to the police why your baby flew out the window? How would you ever live with that guilt? So, I would think, it translates into bath seats. Sure, you could leave your kid for a second in the bath, but why take the risk? Well, apparently people do take these risks, and because of these dopes, I now cannot find options to bathe my baby anywhere. Because instead of taking responsibility, admitting they took a risk, saying it backfired, and next time not leaving their kid in the bath alone–they want to blame someone. This is the same mentality that leads to labeling sour cream with may contain dairy warnings, party goers suing hosts for letting them drive drunk, and McLaren needing to recall a mass of strollers because they can amputate a child’s finger if you try to close it while your child is inside. (Not to mention all the warnings that are plastered all over baby stuff and insist on ruining the background for all my pictures.) Sure, you can still find these bath seats and blow up baths, but they’re relegated to Walmart and Zellers, which immediately stigmitizes them as something unsafe or–god forbid–what poor people use. I’m not saying I love everything at Walmart, or Toys R Us, or even places like Parenting By Nature or Baby on Hip, but why can’t I make my own decisions?
We’re probably going to stick with the granola route, because Samson’s on the verge of sitting on his own anyway. I’ll probably focus my efforts on finding a no slip mat for the big tub, but really, something like this would have been a lifesaver.