I am not a prude or particularly prim and proper but I do not like to discuss or publically partake in disgusting albeit natural bodily functions. My husband, brother in law and sisters in law have been known to have ‘burp offs’, my husband takes pride in his farts sounding like a duck quacking and both my in laws and immediate family seem to enjoy discussing, at the dinner table, the colour, size and consistency of their morning constitutional. But not me. I have been known to visibly cringe at such performances and certainly would not join in. The mere reference to such topics would ensure I busied myself with anything but discussing the topic at hand. That was before I had a baby.
Yes, there’s something about spending hours with hubby in a birthing pool full of god knows what that stops short such prudish behaviour. It’s safe to say that to score highly on my disgustometre these days something truly disgusting has to be a foot. Here’s how readings have differed since Mush’s arrival.
Passing wind in public
Pre baby: no one should pass wind in public and, contrary to popular belief, a little baby doing it is not cute.
Post baby: it’s an inevitable postnatal side effect in mummy and to be congratulated in Mush. In fact Mack and Mush have developed a game as a result of Mush’s impressive flatulence.
Snot and bogeys
Pre baby: even these words are gross. People who pick their noses in public are disgusting and the thought of them doing it in private is no more palatable. And children picking and eating their bogeys is beyond revolting. Why is this globally celebrated? !?
Post baby: I take perverse pleasure in picking stringy bogeys out of Mush’s nose – like squeezing a spot – especially if I can get it all with one poke of the corner of a muslin cloth.
I think nothing of rubbing crusty snot off Mush’s nose with my sleave without changing afterwards and feel almost relieved when the wet liquid dripping down me is snot and not something else.I am pleased however to report I’ve kept a somewhat line of propriety as I do not suck bogeys up with the Bogey Sucker! That’s Daddy’s job. Never mind how much I’m assured that there’s a filter between my mouth and ‘the bogey’ I cannot and will not stomach it!
Pre baby: if you’re sick near me, i’ll be sick on you. Simples.
I am always sick where I can flush it or abandon it and never mind holding Mack’s hair back if he is ill – I have to leave the room as soon as he starts throwing up (it doesn’t help that he sounds like a velocerapter when he’s being sick)!
Post baby: I am thrown up on constantly! Literally all day. Projectile, mucusy, milky, a little, a lot – you name it and Mush has covered me in it. And not only am I able to hold on to the contents of my stomach during such incidents- I happily walk around in clothes that have only seen one swipe of a kitchen towel after such soiling. That being said – if I insisted on changing clothes every time my baby spat up I would be naked most of the time.
Poo (the big one, no pun intended)
Pre baby: poo is just one of those things that everyone does but that should not be discussed colloquially but rather should remain between you and or the toilet/ your doctor.
No, Husband, I am not interested in the fact that you ate so much blue cake icing it turned your poo blue. No Brother In Law, I am not enthralled by your tale of the time you got caught out walking and had to go so you used your sock as toilet roll. And no Niece, I do not want to watch you flush your poo down the toilet.
And Bobal’s ultimate rule for life – your husband must not suspect you poo or in anyway stumble across any evidence of it. Mack nicknames me the speedpooer for a reason!
Post baby: my cardinal rule went out the window (skyrocketed spectacularly out the window) when Mack climbed into the birthing pool with me!
Poo is the barrometre that all things baby and post baby are measured by.
Firstly, ‘that first poo after labour’. The midwife warns you about it and gives you advice on how to handle it. My mother in law came to visit Mush for the second time armed with strawberries to provide me with the necessary ruffage to get things moving (it worked) and everyone and thier dog saw fit to ask me if ‘that’ number 2 had made an appearance yet and what it was like (like all your internal organs are going to fall out of you but that’s another story)!
Mush’s bowel movements have become my version of trainspotting. In the early days I jotted down the colour, frequency and consistency like a mad woman. Me and Mack discussed them at length and after a 7 day drought we prayed for one of those chicken korma nappies (so named by the midwives and no, I haven’t been able to eat chicken korma since)! Poo is one of the main topics of conversation when socialising with other parents, second to baby’s weight and sleep (on the 50th centile and a solid 12 hours by the way).
Poo is no longer persona non grata in the Mack-Bobal household – it’s a sport! And one Mush excels in. Her explosive nappies are legendary and her poo-scapades provide us with hilarious tales for dinner parties (and blogs)!
So in short, I have evolved into a poo talker, bogey picker and sick wearer and wouldn’t have it any other way.
For details of the fart game, click here to see Mack’s blog.
For a classic poo-scapade story, click here see Bobal’s blog.