Daughter: The Externship
Loudon Wainwright III’s “Daughter” appears during the closing credits of Knocked Up.
The externship lasted a week. I followed professionals as they managed an infant, henceforth known as Daughter. Daughter requires constant attention, and an extern was a welcome addition to the organization. When the professionals were otherwise occupied, I was assigned to watch over Daughter. Daughter now consumes solids, and I helped transport these solids to their target location. After an onsite accident, the professionals had me assist with cleanup. The technical term is diaper change, and I’m sure they would have preferred I learned to do one on my own.
The professionals were hoping that Daughter’s upgrade to Crawling would be complete by the end of the week, and there appeared to be some talk about bypassing that upgrade altogether and going straight to Walking. Curiosity got the better of me, and I asked the professionals when these milestones typically occurred in comparable organizations. For the answers, the professionals pointed me to their copy of The Scientist in the Crib: Minds, Brains, and How Children Learn. While I wasn’t able to finish the book, the experience gave me a sense for what doing this full-time must be like, and it would be wonderful to have that opportunity some day.