The other night, I was watching a show on military men going through something called “Hell Week”.  These guys were voluntarily being pushed to their physical limits just for the opportunity to try out for the special armed forces, the Green Berets.  (NOTE:  A Green Beret is a legendary forest-lurking, swamp-eating, shadow warrior.)  (ANOTHER NOTE:  A Green Beret in a dark alley would have me running in the exact opposite direction than if the dark alley presented me with a Raspberry Beret.)  If you’re looking for a non-stereotypical depiction of a green beret and what skills they possess, check out the movie First Blood.  After seeing that flick, I could easily pick one out of a crowd of people…as long as they were wearing the signature headband and bloody tank top.

I don’t know what it was.  Maybe fatigue set in.  Or maybe a dram of rum permeated my intestinal wall and ignited a few scattered brain impulses. I had an idea.

What if I could make encourage Smushie to participate in a form of “Hell Week” for babies?  Kind of like a rite of passage from newborn-ness to baby-ness.  If she passes the rigorous physical examination, she’ll get to wear the coveted camouflage baby headband which signals to onlookers that this here is a bona fide Green Beretby.  (Beret + Baby = Beretby.  Still with me? Ok.)  Also upon successful completion of the training, Smush will be given the opportunity to carry her very own AK-47, that will signify to all that the government can’t take away a baby’s rights to bear arms, which is in the constitution.  (There’s nothing like the liberal mind interpretation of the English language.)

The idea is pure genius, as most of my ideas are.  I would be gauging her physical abilities, as well as strengthening her for the exertions of daily life (i.e. sitting up, standing, walking, etc.).  I mean Smush isn’t anywhere near being pushed to her physical limits right now.  She practically lays around all day eating, sleeping, and burping.  Not that I compare my children, but Worm was sitting upright and juggling bowling pins at 3 months of age.  (Ok, slight exaggeration.)  He set the bar and I we have to clear it.  There’s nothing like a little sibling rivalry to coax the best out of us.  (But, it’s ok for my two children to compare themselves to one another.)

Smush’s training program is pretty simple.  7 days of physical (also mental and emotional) endurance.  Since I’m a nice guy, I won’t wake her up at 4am to start training.  She’s allowed to wake up when the sun rises.  Next, she will do:

  • Tummy time until she falls asleep on the pillow or vomits
  • Assisted sit ups until her body fatigues or her arms give out
  • Eat until she falls asleep
  • Upon waking, repeat tummy time and assisted sit ups.  Eat.  Sleep.  Repeat.

Training ends at 7pm every night for Smush to wind down and relax.  In the evening, she’s allowed to chat online with her pals, play cards, or watch TV.  Alcohol and smoking are strictly prohibited during Baby Hell Week.  Visits from family are kept to a minimum to reduce the unnecessary distractions.

…I have to let the cat out of the bag.  Her Hell Week started on Monday.  (I couldn’t wait for the sergeant to approve, if you know what I mean.) And on that day, she did extremely well.  It was fruitful and Smush showed incredible strength and endurance.  She looked strong, capable, and determined.

But on Tuesday, I don’t know what happened.  She slept until 10am.  Woke up to exercise once and then proceeded to drink twice the amount of milk that she had ever previously ingested in one sitting…and napped for the rest of the day.  (She’s already being defiant!  I don’t know whether to pat her on the back or on the bottom.)  The competitive fire was no longer in her belly.  (Doused by the milk, I reckon.)

I think Smushie’s taking me for a fool.  I swear I saw her peeking out at me from the slit in her eyelids.  The rules don’t allow me to wake her from sleep and I think she’s found this little loophole.  If Wednesday is anything like today, I will be forced to put my foot down and cut out the day naps.  Hell Week will go on!

Smushie! If You're Smiling, You're Not Working Hard Enough!

Smushie! If You’re Smiling, You’re Not Working Hard Enough!