Babies are adorable, squishy bundles of joy and happiness. They smell like freshly baked bread and heaven. Their gurgles and chortles are akin to angels singing. Their peacefully sleeping faces are almost too heartwarming to bear. There is, however, another side to babies. A gross, disgusting side. A side that causes parents around the world to wrinkle up their noses and ugly cry. There are times when babies projectile vomit, explosively poop, make major messes and cause their moms and dads to gag...or worse.
Of course, the abhorrent side of babies is completely forgiven by a mom or a pop the instant an infant grasps the finger of an exhausted progenitor, or the moment a toddler stammers out the words "I lub you" for the first time. This doesn't change the fact that sometimes little ones are just the grossest. Maybe it's because if there wasn't a gruesome side to babies, parents would never be able to deal with the fact that baby snuggles and toddler giggles must at some point come to an end.
The fact that diaper changing, mealtime messes and spit-up mishaps end along with babyhood helps parents deal with the fact that their chubby-cheeked, dimpled handed little cherubs will eventually transform into opinionated, strong-willed and mischievous children. When a teenaged child totals the car while out for a joy ride or throws a rager while Mom and Dad are out of town, parents can take solace in the fact that at least they are no longer covered in bodily fluids and smooshed carrots.
The following 15 photos prove the fact that babies are sooooo cute, but sometimes they are also just plain gross.
15 Old Faithful
Look out! We aren't sure that any new parents are prepared for the amount of spit up that is constantly spewing out of their babies. Or the exorbitant amount of laundry they will be doing as a result. One of the best pieces of advice to give a new parent may be "have about a thousand or so burp cloths at the ready at all times, and maybe invest in some heavy-duty goggles."
Some babies puke up their lunch more than others, but we've never met a baby who didn't look like a scene from The Exorcist every once in a while. Spit-up is stinky, and for how tiny newborns are, it's pretty impressive how far they can launch their partially digested meals and snacks.
“Love can change a person the way a parent can change a baby- awkwardly, and often with a great deal of mess.” -Lemony Snicket, Horseradish
14 Tinkle Sprinkle
Boy moms are probably a bit better acquainted with the unexpected amount of pee that flows out of a little one when his diaper is removed, even for a mere second or two, but this doesn't mean baby girls don't pee on their parents too. Whatever a baby's gender, pee is pee, and it's never fun to have it anywhere on your person.
The problem with boys is they have not yet learned the art of aiming, meaning a mom with a young son may be so used to being covered in pee she doesn't even bother to wipe it up anymore. It'll dry eventually. Right? We feel especially sorry for parents who find baby pee landing in their mouths, food or long-awaited caffeinated or alcoholic beverages. Just remember: your baby loves you, and he's most likely not urinating on you on purpose...yet.
“The only creatures that are evolved enough to convey pure love are dogs and infants.” -Johnny Depp
13 Cute Hat
Is there anything more fun than cleaning up after a toddler at mealtime? Maybe a root canal or an awkward first date with someone you don't find even remotely attractive. The point is, as much as a parent loves his or her child, the mess, mess, mess that comes along with mealtime once a little one is old enough to semi-feed herself is constant, overwhelming and, in the words of a toddler, "yucky."
Parents may take some solace in the fact that a child who is able to feed herself, and play with her food while doing so, is exerting her independence as she learns, grows and flourishes, day by day, messy meal after messy meal.
“Babies are soft. Anyone looking at them can see the tender, fragile skin and know it for the rose-leaf softness that invites a finger's touch. But when you live with them and love them, you feel the softness going inward, the round-cheeked flesh wobbly as custard, the boneless splay of the tiny hands. But from the very start, there is that small streak of steel within each child. That thing that says 'I am,' and forms the core of personality." -Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
12 Steady Stream
Sometimes, parents are lucky enough to be out of the line of fire when a baby decides it's time to spew white, sticky liquid all over the damn place. Of course, cleaning up the unlucky spot where the spit-up lands is still required, but at least Mom and Dad can choose to cover the offending location with a rug or a Twister game if they just don't have the energy to deal at the moment.
In fact, we give new parents permission to do just that. It's likely your baby will soon have a putrid poop that will cover the scent of sour vomit right up.
"Their joints are melted rubber, and even when you kiss them hard, in the passion of loving their existence, your lips sink down and seem never to find bone. Holding them against you, they melt and mold, as though they might at any moment flow back into your body." -Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
11 Soiled Sock
Parents know the day will come. The day they have been dreading. The day they have been praying they will somehow avoid. What is this fateful day? The one when Poop. Is. Everywhere. Usually, this foul occurrence takes place when a new mother or father is out and about, with no spare outfit and not enough wipes. Newborn poop can be runny, making it easy for the mess to spread out of control quite quickly.
Luckily, soap, warm water, sanitizing wipes and wine exist to help parents through the grossness of dealing with infant blowouts or toddler poop art. Just remember, moms and dads, cleaning up sh** totally builds character.
"To be a good father and mother requires that the parents defer many of their own needs and desires in favor of the needs of their children. As a consequence of this sacrifice, conscientious parents develop a nobility of character." -James E. Faust
10 Green Machine
Parents love their children all they way to the moon and back again, whether a baby is their first, their third or their thirteenth. This love helps Mom and Dad get through the icky instances when puréed vegetables cover their baby, the kitchen, the ceiling the walls and the new iPhone.
Deep breaths can help those who once proudly lived in a spotless home...before an adorable little monster took up residence in their pad, making keeping thing squeaky clean pretty much impossible.
“A first child is your own best foot forward, and how you do cheer those little feet as they strike out. You examine every turn of flesh for precocity, and crow it to the world. But the last one: the baby who trails her scent like a flag of surrender through your life when there will be no more coming after--oh, that's love by a different name.” -Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
9 I Love You, Dad
The day may come when Mom and Dad have simply had enough of the mess. The breaking point may arrive the moment a child gets some sort of bodily fluid everywhere for the sixth time in one day. When a parent can't take one more sticky mess, it may be time to call for reinforcements.
Grandma and Grandpa are often willing, able and excited to step in and take over while new mamas and papas take a much needed bread from all the abhorrence that is a new baby. They've been through the stench and the stickiness before, and come out alive. There's hope, new parents. Go to a movie or go sleep in your car, then get back in there before Granny has a meltdown.
“The best baby-sitters, of course, are the baby’s grandparents. You feel completely comfortable entrusting your baby to them for long periods, which is why most grandparents flee to Florida.” -Dave Barry
8 Ready, Aim, Pee!
Alright, so...we all pee. We all poop. Shouldn't new parents just get over the fact that their babies always make messes at the most inconvenient times and in the most incovenient places, and just deal with the messes made by their children without complaining? Some say yes. Others say parents deserve any amount of sympathy they can get from anyone and everyone.
New parents, if your barista is willing to listen to you complain about your child's massive blow-out, complain away. If your mailman can commiserate with the fact that you just mopped the floor, only to have your baby cover it with pee two seconds later, tell him all about it. Your child isn't going to feel bad for you. Your partner isn't going to feel any sympathy for you. If you can find a sympathetic ear, talk non-stop until the person attached to that ear runs away.
“All of us have moments in our lives that test our courage. Taking children into a house with a white carpet is one of them. ” -Erma Bombeck
7 Bath Time
At least most homes these days come equipped with a little thing called a bath tub or a shower. It's the place parents can throw their child when the mess becomes too much. They can turn on the water, squirt in some baby soap and leave all their worries behind them. Right? Wrong!
Many little ones love to poop right there in the bath water, contaminating themselves, and the only place in the house that's still kinda, sorta clean. Moms and dads who haven't yet had the joy of scooping poop out of the tub and disinfecting everything, including the baby, might not be justified in calling themselves parents quite yet. Don't worry. Your time will come. Just when you think the bathtub is your friend, your baby will give you a reason to remember you and your home will never, ever be clean again...at least until your kids move out.
"Cleaning while they are in the house is like brushing your teeth while eating an Oreo." -new mom, Shannon B.
6 Sorry, Mom
Babies don't do it on purpose. They don't try to make their moms and dads disgusted. The little darlings are just doing their thing, living their lives, the only way they know how. Their entire existence is pretty much an endless cycle of eating, puking, pooping, peeing and sleeping. If you think about it, being gross is kinda their job.
Sure, no one likes to be covered in the vomit or excrement of another human being, but parents who are rocking a baby's projectiles on their shirts or in their hairstyles are undoubtedly racking up the positive points in their child's eyes. Some say babies can't remember the countless days you spend wiping their bums. Somewhere, in their hearts, we think they do. Someday, when your child is the one taking care of you, you'll be glad you changed those diapers and wiped that spit up with tenderness and affection.
“Always be nice to your children because they are the ones who will choose your rest home.” -Phyllis Diller
Every once in awhile, a diaper must come off for a change or a bath, and every once in awhile getting peed upon will be the fate of the person brave enough to remove it. It isn't glamorous to get a shot of urine to the face. It isn't really fun, either. It is, however, a guaranteed way to wake yourself up if you're dragging due to your messy child keeping you up at all hours of the night.
Geez. Being a parent is really hard. It's also pretty sickening. Good thing once a year on Mother's Day and Father's Day parents get a card made with crayons and a sticky hug. Totally worth it. And you know what? We aren't even being sarcastic right now. For some unexplained reason, parenting is as rewarding as it is disgusting.
“The biggest thing I remember is that there was just no transition. You hit the ground diapering.” -Paul Reiser
4 So Delicious
Babies really are delicious with their chubby rolls and squishable cheeks and teeny tiny toes. It's no wonder Moms and Dads love to kiss, nuzzle and nibble on their little ones, even if it means getting a little something gross smeared somewhere as a result.
Feeding babies is messy, changing babies is messy, heck, even bath time can be messy with the bubbles and the water splashed and sploshed all over the place. Along with the tangible disarray babies create, having a child also does a number on the heart. The love muscle is squeezed, pulled, twisted and contorted by the adoration it is filled with now that a little one has entered the picture. The emotions that come along with being a parent are a beautiful mess in and of themselves.
"We’re always bluffing, pretending we know best, when most of the time we’re just praying we won’t screw up too badly." -Jodi Picoult, House Rules
3 Blowing Bubbles
Babies learn quickly that certain actions cause certain results. If, for example, a little one learns his parents laugh when he blows spit bubbles, he might make it his life's work to perfect the art of slobbering. The drooling only gets worse when Baby begins sprouting teeth. Some parents even resort to putting a bib or jaunty neck scarf on him full-time to stave off the slobber.
Let's be honest, is baby drool really all bad? Not always. Anyone who has ever had the pleasure of receiving a slobbery kiss from a baby will vehemently agree with this fact. Baby slobber is a bit wet and sticky and bubbly sometimes, but so is champagne. Some of the best things in life are simply a little bit messy.
“If you were to open up a baby's head - and I am not for a moment suggesting that you should - you would find nothing but an enormous drool gland.” -Dave Barry
2 So Squishy
Okay parents who have had it with gross baby messes, we have some good news for you. Allowing your child to make a mess is actually one of the best things you can do for her. Not only does messy play spark a child's five senses and help her learn about the world around her, even at a very young age, crawling in the dirt, molding clay and playing with squishy foods fosters a baby's imagination, making her into a little scientist. She learns by touching, experimenting and, yep, making horrible messes.
Does this mean you should allow a young child to investigate her own poopy diapers and the toilet water? Probably not. There are limits, but next time you want to pull your hair out because your child's food is everywhere but in her mouth, remember she's simply being a little genius and pat yourself on the back for creating her.
"A baby is born with a need to be loved - and never outgrows it." -Frank A. Clark
1 Buried Treasure
Don't be devastated if your baby is gross; all babies are. They are basically little factories that produce one disgusting thing after another to be spewed out into the world, and, of course, onto Mom and Dad.
But babies are so much more than gruesome. They are babbling, giggling, snuggling, wondering, exploring, adoring pieces of you. Plus, they manage to be adorable even in the most stomach-churning of situations. Remember, they will grow up. The poop and puke and pee and drool will not last forever. Celebrate the gross, embrace the mess and remember your baby is the just luckiest to have you for a parent.
"In the second year, the bone hardens and the child stands upright, skull wide and solid, a helmet protecting the softness within. And 'I am' grows, too. Looking at them, you can almost see it, sturdy as heartwood, glowing through the translucent flesh." -Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible