If you have read this column before you know that personal grooming is not my forte. I tend to spend as much time in the morning getting ready than I do sneezing a couple of times.
But that time has been cut to even less time and some mornings I look like an unshaven, wolf of a figure, as I leave for work.
You see a couple of kids need my attention in the morning which has condensed my already-short grooming time. With all of her contraptions in her bathroom, my wife needs her preparation time to be without small ones, which means I usually take the brunt of it, which is fine.
It can make for some fun bonding times in the morning and we have settled into a routine. It's a unique sight as the 9-month-old is wanting to hold my hand as he stands in the bathroom as I brush his big sister's teeth with the other hand. It's almost like a chain of people in the bathroom and it's now becoming habit for all three of us. I guess our littlest one doesn't want to be left out of the morning preparations either.
Showering in the morning now is less about cleaning myself and more about hearing if the baby is crying in the playpen in the other room and wondering how fast I can get out to help him. It has to be a pretty big cry to make me abort the whole shower, which rarely happens.
I am able to squeeze in some time to eat in the morning, but again I'm not alone as the baby thinks anything in a bowl is fair game to him as well. He's not quite that big enough to crunch down on raisin bran, though given the chance he would give it a try.
So I am able to be fed at the expense of grooming time, which I never liked much before anyway. So if you see me on the street and notice that I missed a spot shaving or that my hair is a little disheveled, just cut me some slack.
You try brushing someone else's teeth with one hand while trying to keep a baby from toppling on the bathroom floor with the other.
It's not that easy.
But, we've so far been pretty successful as the kids get where they need to go on time with only minimal bumps and bruises.
I can only imagine when they get bigger and can care for themselves, then I'll actually have to act presentable again. I'll then have to make up some other excuse as to why I don't look pristine, but that's just me.
Reporter Andrew Potter is a Tuesday columnist for the Times-Republican. The views expressed in this column are personal views of the writer and don't necessarily reflect the views of the T-R. Contact Andrew Potter at 641-753-6611 or firstname.lastname@example.org