Monday 20 May 2013

To the Parent of the Dirty Nappy

I’m not going to beat around the bush here, I’m just going to go ahead and say it. I know you’re thinking it too. Poo smells. It really does. Dog poo smells, your poo smells and rabbit poo smells. Even the tiniest cutest newborns in the world, do smelly poos.

Not that you mind, because they’re so cute and squishy. The newborns, not the poos.

As you adjust to your new daily routine, baby poo becomes part of it. The smell, the change, the wipe, the flush. It all becomes second nature. You find yourself holding your baby in the air and sniffing their crotch - something you said you’d never do - because you need to know, is it time for the next nappy change?

In my long 16 month career as a mother, I have had many a moment of poo related hilarity. I have knelt in it, stood in it, sat in it. I have got it on my elbow, in my hair and all over my bag. I have laughed at it, wretched at it and, after one particularly sleepless night, cried at it. Once I even bathed with it. This was, of course, unintentional.

I just feel I should mention at this point, that I definitely don’t love poo. It’s just that I can cope with the poo of my child. I feel very differently about the poo of your child.

We went to our usual playgroup today. It’s a nice group in a local Church. There are lots of toys to play with, as well as craft activities to try. Ebony loves it. Today she loved sitting in the red and yellow car. She had fun playing with the playdough. She spent a good amount of time creating a pile of dolls, and then shouting “NO” at any children who dared to touch the dolls.

I usually love the group too. It’s nice to catch up with the other mums, and to see Ebony having fun. But today, the experience was somewhat dampened by the incessant smell of poo. It was as though every single inch of the church had been soaked in sewage. It wasn’t a mild poo either. It was an eye burner.

The smell seemed to be following us. Ebony doesn’t poo in her nappy, and hasn’t for a long time, but I checked a few times today to make sure it wasn’t her. I checked the soles of my shoes. Nothing, phew. No matter where we went, the smell of poo followed. It was in the toy kitchens, on the trampoline and in the dressing up box. Had I caught my reflection in a mirror and noticed a moustache made of poo atop my lip, I really would not have been surprised.

By the end of the group, the fumes had obviously gone to my head. “It smells like shit.” I announced to a mum I don’t really know, as we queued to tidy away the toys. The mum confided in me that she had spent the past fifteen minutes trying to locate the source of the smell, and had narrowed it down to one of two children. But she didn’t know who they were with.

Now, it seemed pretty obvious to me that whichever child it was must be with the adult with a gaping hole in the middle of their face. The adult without a nose. Looking around the room, I soon realised that this adult did not exist.

I can only assume that the grown up in question, is so besotted with their wonderful child, that the smell of their poo is like a gift to be enjoyed. Very well, but must you make an entire church hall endure it? Because, and I don’t mean to be rude here, but it really didn’t smell like roses.

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