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Things are going fairly smooth. However, life without night time nannies is taking some getting used to for me. At 6 p.m. I used to look at my watch and think "Only one more hour and help will arrive." Now at 6 p.m. I look at my watch and think "No one is coming to help you...insanity won't be that bad. You probably won't even know that you have gone completely off your rocker. A mellow, blissful feeling will settle over you and... HEY! TAKE THAT OUT OF YOUR MOUTH AND STOP PUSHING YOUR SISTER!"

Techniques and things to expect when you have kids:

1. Know thy opponent.
They are crafty, master manipulators. From the moment they leave the womb they have your number. They know the buttons to push to get what they want. You will bend over backwards to please them, but you can never do enough. They will always want more, whatever you give, more will be demanded. They have no remorse, no regret about bending you to their will, as a hurricane might bend a blade of grass. They appear weak, small, frail, and feeble. They appear utterly helpless, sometimes even allowing drool to run down their chubby chins, but it is only to lull you into a false sense of superiority. You may think that you have them under control, but the opposite is usually the case. You may think that you are taking care of them, but in reality you are being trained. Trained to serve, to cater to their every whim. Do not underestimate them.
While they are small, they are surprisingly strong. While they flail about and appear to be uncoordinated, they possess quickness and agility that would rival any prize fighter. In this lesson we will discuss some of their more common attacks and defenses, and review some techniques to counter these moves.

2. Bottle Feeding:

A. The Double Arm Sweep is a technique they use often. Once the nipple is in their mouth and their mouth is full of formula they wait patiently for you to drop your guard and relax. Once they sense that you feel in control they will suddenly flail their arms in a windmilling gesture knocking the bottle down and away from their mouth and spewing the stored up formula down their chin and into the folds of skin around the neck where it can ferment properly. This move may be accompanied by a smile, which allows formula to run down around the ears, or more often a shriek and grimace.

B. The Arch and Twist is used to the same effect, to dislodge the nipple from the oral cavity. In this technique your opponent will thrust the head and buttox back, arching the back, and at the same time twisting the head away to one side. Again this is done in a vigorous motion as soon as the little terrorist feels you relax.

To combat these techniques I use The Cross Body Arm Bar. Start with your opponent laying across your lap on a pillow. I prefer to have the head and shoulders across my right knee and the head turned away from me. Place your right arm on the opponents chest in a diagonal line from the left shoulder to the elbow of the right arm, pining their right upper arm to their side. In this manner you will be able to control both arms, preventing a Double Arm Sweep. Even though the left arm remains free below the shoulder you need not worry, your forearm will prevent them reaching the bottle. Also, with your right forearm just under the chin you can prevent your opponents head from turning too far towards you.
As you well know, once their face is pointed at yours, they will be able to see the fear in your eyes and will spray your face with formula, accompanied by a loud sputtering sound and followed by an innocent looking grin.
As I was saying with the forearm across the chest you can prevent both the arch and the twist of The Arch and Twist Nipple Removing Technique. You must be sure to hold your opponent snuggly or they will escape your grasp and defeat your efforts to nourish them. On the other hand, you must not hold too tightly or you will have made your intentions known and you will have a screaming fit to deal with.
Once your right arm is in place, grasp the bottle firmly with the base between your thumb and index finger and the nipple pointed down. Insert the nipple into your opponents mouth slowly to test for a reaction. Opponents who have studied the Reflux Code are unpredictable and it may require persistence on your part to complete your task.
The beauty of this counter technique is that it gives your opponent enough freedom of movement that they still think that they can maneuver, but allows you to control the situation. (Or think you are controlling the situation.)

3. Escape Maneuvers:

A. The Arch and Flail is used mainly when you are standing erect, but not always, it has also been seen while in a sitting position. Normally, I hold my opponent facing me, my left arm around the upper thighs while supporting the back and head with my right. The Arch and Flail is prevented altogether as long as your right hand remains in the support position. However, your foe is patient and cunning, waiting for that one moment of inattention to strike. The moment that you free your support hand for another task, they will act. Just try to reach for a bottle, open a door, grab a toddler who is running past with no pants on, or maybe just try to get a sip of coffee. As soon as they feel the right hand move away they will arch backwards, pushing off with both hands, flailing their arms out as if in a swan dive, and try to bash their noggins on to whatever may be behind them.
I don't think that they actually believe that they can get away. I think they do this strictly for the psychological effect. "Pay attention to ME! Or I will make you feel very bad."

B. The other technique that they use in this situation is The Forehead Tush Push. This move consists of simultaneously pushing their head and arms forward into you shoulder and thrusting out with their legs, pressing their butt against your arm in an effort to create enough room to slip down out of your grasp. This move is sometimes even employed with the support hand in place and can be very effective.
One version of this move is even practiced by the toddler. The only difference is the toddler is standing on her own, positions herself between you and the counter while you are trying to cook or clean (usually for the toddler in question) and thrusts her rear into your shins while bracing against the counter with her head and arms, effectively separating you from the task at hand. (I have not come up with a counter to this particular form of the tush push. Yet.)

C. Both the Arch and Flail and the Tush Push techniques can be countered by simply turning you opponent around. I have named this submission hold The Post-natal Nelson. Again, I like to use my left arm so that I am free to use the right for other tasks. With your opponent facing away from you, place you left arm over her left shoulder, across her stomach, between her legs, and grasp the pampered bottom. Then drape your subdued opponent diagonally across you midsection, cradling her head in the crook of your arm. Your opponent may now flail to her hearts content and you will be unaffected. Do be careful not to stand too close to any object that may be grasped, upset, or over turned by a 15 pound person. This hold has the added advantage that anything spit, drooled, or aspirated from the darling infant will land on the floor and not on your third clean shirt of the day.

4. Submission Moves:

Yes, they have their submission moves too. You must always be wary any time you are within 12 to 18 inches of your opponent. As I said before, they are surprisingly quick and strong. One moment of carelessness on your part and you could be faced with The Lower Lip Yank and Stretch, The Fist Full of Hair Method, The Nasal Probe, or the tried and true Eye Gouge. Once you are in their grasp you are at their mercy, right where they want you. I have found that these attacks are not limited to adults. They are practiced at every opportunity on whoever is close at hand, siblings included.

I hope that this guide to Post-natal jujitsu has been helpful for you.



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