CircumCISION - that's what! I share this story with you only in hopes that future fathers will be warned and fully prepared. Be afraid, be very afraid.
So Kara and I had decided before Caleb was born that we would circumcise him. I had decided already in my mind that circumcision was what we'd do, but it took Kara seeing a picture on Wikipedia of an UNcircumcised "one" to change her mind. I believe her quote was "it looks kinda like an anteater".
10 days after Caleb was born we entered the doctor's office for his appointed time. Poor little guy had no idea what he was in for. My wife lovingly turned to me and asked if it would be ok for her to not go in & see what was about to happen. Being the manly man I am, I said, "No honey, you stay back here. I'll go." It was like a scene from "Glory" where the menfolk were saying goodbye to their wives just before joining the lines of infantry.
Anywho, I decided if anybody was going to stand by my boy's side, it was going to be me. So we entered the doctor's office and began strapping my boy into a white basin that was shaped like a baby's body. It had straps for his legs and and baby-butt sized hole so he fit like a glove.
They proceeded to give him a local anesthesia shot in his scrotum. Now here's where daddy got a little queezy. Apparently, Caleb liked it so much and was so relaxed after the shot that he pooped and peed simultaneously.
After we changed him and got the table cleaned up, the doctor proceeded to fit his little guy into a stainless steel contraption. I call it a contraption because I didn't go to medical school. I studied the Bible. And the Bible only talks about Abraham having to circumcise himself and his male family members, as well as David cutting off all the foreskins of the Philistines after he'd defeated them. The Bible doesn't mention anything about a stainless steel contraption. So I call it a contraption.
When the scalpel was set in place to cut, the doctor looks at me and says (and I quote) "How do you want it?" Immediately my mind and I had a short conversation. Did the doctor just say that out loud? What would he mean by that? Is that like when the waiter asks you how you want your sirloin cooked? Is that the same thing?
I realized that my bachelor's in Pastoral Studies was not going to do a lot for me here. So I replied, "Are there different styles that you can give it?"
He said, "No, you can have it with a string tied around it (which apparently cuts off the blood supply to the foreskin and it falls off in a couple of days) or you can have the FIREMAN's HAT"
I don't mean to sound crude, but I began doing a mental observation of my own circumcision job. Does it look like a fireman's hat? Do firemen wear hats? My brother-in-law is a fireman, and I don't remember him describing his hat?
I realized that if I made the wrong decision, I could end up paying for it when he got married or went to shower after P.E. in high school. I couldn't screw this up.
So like a caring and sacrificing father, I panicked. I said, "Doctor how about this? I'll show you mine and you can do it like that." As if exposing yourself in a doctor's office was something that people do everyday.
He looked back and didn't think too long about it. "No, that's okay", he replied.
Well, I ended up making the right decision to go with the fireman's hat. Caleb is pleased with it, I think. It looks like daddies'. That's all that mattered to me.
That doctor, however, has a great story to tell this Christmas after the White Elephant Gift exchange.