Monday, 04 November 2013 Filed in: Little A
It was a normal morning. Little A woke at 7.30 - happy and gurgly - making sweet little toddler noises. We played together for a few minutes and then went to get breakfast. I took off his nappy to let his skin breathe and popped him in his high chair. Breakfast was uneventful - we had poached eggs on toast and most of it went in a mouth (either mine or his). Only a mini amount ended up on the wall. I packed his lunch bag and lifted him out of his high chair. I was just about to bring him into his room to dress him when I noticed a smear of egg yolk on the table. If that stuff is allowed to dry it turns into concrete. I put Little A on the ground and ran into the kitchen to grab a cloth and wipe down the table. No more than ten second later I was finished and planning out Little A’s outfit for the day in my head (dungarees, t-shirt, hoodie - dressing boys isn’t exactly fine art).
I walked over to where he sat on my lovely, green, silk rug. “What’s that you’re playing with buddy?” I cooed. “Are you playing with conkers?”. Wtf was I thinking…conkers? There are no feckin trees in Shanghai. My eyes widened with horror. It’s not conkers…it’s poo!!! He looks up and smiles at me from atop his poo pile as he continued to do what he does best, smush things into other things - rug, face, hair, bellybutton. Waaah - I wail and grab him off the floor. “Oh goodie” he is no doubt cackling in his head as I lift him onto my hip “more things to smush things into - t-shirt, arm, neck, eye”.
I run frantically into the bathroom and turn on the water. I rub soap over areas that need it - which is most of him - and try to get some water on him. He starts screaming as if the water were acid. He thrashes and fights and tries to put a bacteria infested finger in my mouth and then, when that doesn’t work, in his own mouth. “NO!” I scream as I pull his finger away from his mouth. He throws back his head with rage and then, as if delving into the bank of bold toddler innate knowledge, he throws his arms above his head and goes limp. I am now left with 13kg of deadweight in my hands coated with a slimy melange of hand soap and poo. He slides to the ground and starts scrabbling away on his hands and knees leaving ‘muddy’ handprints in his wake. I grab an ankle before it slips beyond my grasp and haul him back. I lift him forcefully and hold him under the tap which seems to have reduced to a trickle and then…drip, drip, drip…nothing at all. Today is not the day they’re turning the water off to work on the mains, is it? It can’t be! Surely not. It is.
45 minutes and 243 baby wipes later, we’ve both stopped crying and we’re ready to go to playschool. I just hope no one hugs him too closely today.