It’s 10.20pm and Maggie is still not sleeping. She has been chatting, singing, screeching and kicking her cot for the past hour or so trying to get our attention. She has already pulled all the bed clothes off and thrown the dummy out of the cot but we hadn’t relented in ages. But the latest one was to shout that she had a dirty nappy. In fairness, I’m all for her screaming away and I’ll even tolerate kicking the cot for a good 10 minutes at a time but even I won’t let them stew in their own poo. It worked. The room smelled vaguely of a dirty nappy when I walked in, but then she had already had three bad nappies today so there was bound to be a lingering smell so I thought she was telling the truth. She had conned me of course; she was as dry as a bone but had succeeded in getting out of the cot for a few minutes, thereby cleverly and cunningly postponing bedtime.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a household with two babies still in nappies will smell vaguely of poo at any given time. On a good day it smells of talc powder, which anyone will admit is a yummy smell. But still the faint whiff of dirty nappies linger, so a good day will be talc and nappy. On a bad day it’s just dirty nappies. When you’re in the house, of course, you don’t notice it so much. It’s only when you come back in after being outside and step back a little when you open the door. ‘Phew. What the…?’ At worst it’s a bad nappy fermenting in the bin despite being wrapped in four beautifully perfumed nappy sacks, but even when the bins are emptied the smell still…lingers. It’s either that or spilled milk, and there’s plenty of that in our house, too.
Funnily enough when I was younger I hated the word; I couldn’t even bring myself to say it. Poo. Eugh, such vulgarity. The explosive ‘Peh’. The dirty diphthong ‘oooo’, often elongated for effect. I found it disgusting. Gross. Oh, how times have changed. After two years I have to admit that it’s very much part of my life.
So there you have it. I haven’t written a blog post since Elsie was three weeks old and she’s over four months now, and when I do it’s about poo. But that’s my life. Not exclusively, you understand. (Jesus that WOULD be grim. I once said that I have a thing about smells and it still stands. There are some seriously minging smells in the world and this is still one of them). The last four months have been the most hectic, frantic, bursting-at-the-seams action-packed, exhausting, crazy months ever. I’ll tell you about it sometime, whenever I get a minute. Ironically, it’s been ever more nuts since leaving London and coming back home where our family members are close-by, but that’s a lot to do with the fact that Maggie no longer goes to childcare and Johnny is commuting to London every week. Oh, and that Maggie has firmly hit the Terrible Twos.
But I wouldn’t change a single thing. Elsie Murray is an absolute joy to behold and warms my heart every time I look at her. She is probably the best baby in the world; she’s certainly the smiliest, most patient and most relaxed one. She cut her first tooth last week which wouldn’t have been easy or pleasant for her, but she managed it so well without much fuss at all. And Maggie Murray? Well, she’s still the funniest little toddler I’ve ever met and makes me belly-laugh every day. She’s not an easy child to look after as she’s got Toddler ADHP. (This is my own diagnosis, you understand, and is similar to its close neighbour ADHD but less a psychiatric disorder and more an appreciation for her fun, full-on nature: Ants Down Her Pants). It basically means that she can’t sit still for more than five minutes. That’s right, she doesn’t watch DVDs, doesn’t read stories or build train sets or draw pictures for hours at a time. One lovely friend, on observing Maggie’s ADHP at work said, ‘Well, at least you know she’s not stupid’. That’s for sure, but I just hope she will soon learn how to content herself and relaxxxxx because it is exhausting looking after her. Until then we just have to join her in her Tasmanian whirlwind adventures.
Oh, listen….silence. Happy days – it’s after 11pm and Maggie has finally gone to sleep. Elsie the dote has been asleep for hours but is due to waken in the next hour or so for her last feed and will be up before six for her first. Eight hours sleep? Poo! Who needs ‘em.
P.S. It’s good to be back