Ok, I promise you that this is not going to become a Mommy Blog, but I have got to share this little story about Wil. Partly because I know writing is therapeutic and the exercise might help me feel better, cleaner, and partly as a warning to all those newbie moms out there. I feel a little like Lady Macbeth at the moment, except it is not blood I keep washing off my hands…
Living in Toronto these past weeks has been like living in someone’s armpit. The dank humid air smells skunky; it’s rank stale heated air that just hangs there; clinging, clogging every pore. It’s noon, and the sun has reached its zenith, a blazing eye burning in the sky, its mocking me. It sees the future.
I had just fed The Boy, and changed his diaper before putting him down for a nap. I decided not to put his shorts and tee back on because he really didn’t need it- he was too warm.
About two hours later he awakes…I can hear his soft little coos, he is babbling away in a language only other babies and stuffed animals understand. His electronic frog Baby Tad is in the crib with him and they seem to be playing nicely. Tad is singing “If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands”. I love it when he wakes content, it makes me happy. All is right with the world. I figure I can leave him up there a bit, and finish up the kitchen. I have done this before, when he allows it, it helps me get stuff done. Heck he is safe up there in his crib. It is a few moments before I realize Tad is no longer singing, and Wil is not longer cooing. Come to think of it, it’s been quiet for awhile. Too quiet. I dry my hands and make my way upstairs.
Just as I turn up the last few stairs the smell hits me like a moose on the highway. I groan- this is going to be a helluva diaper change. Oh it was a tad more than a diaper change.
The first thing I noticed was how brown his hands were on the crib bars, and what is that on his leg…is that…? OHMYGOD that is! Oh, oh please no. I edge closer, my face in my hands, I am whimpering a little and my eyes are tearing from the smell. Baby Tad is dead, lying tits up in the crib, his lifeless keypad will never again light up and sing. He seems to have had the worst of it- I could no longer clearly make out his features. It was only his blue “On/Off” pad on his foot that identified him.
The crib sheet looks like Van Gogh’s Starry Night, except the medium was clearly not oil on canvas. The rungs were coated as well, his security blankie “MooCow” lay half in/half out of the crib. It looked like it was trying to escape- but never quite made it. I sympathized. I was pondering my own escape.
But The Boy is there, looking up at me, smiling with all of his three teeth, arms up in the air. He wanted up- but I wanted to run and hide. Damn where is a level four containment suit when you need it?
I picked him up, holding him at arms length, and carried him to the bath. I turned on the water and just let it run while I wiped, and cleaned, and wiped and cleaned, all the while muttering soft though not quite religious prayers. I did it over and over again until the water ran clear. But oh, oh I still had the rest of the mess to deal with. It was waiting for me. Waiting there in the bedroom, in the cruel, cruel heat of the summer.
There is a lesson here folks: They may be warm, and they may like to run free with just a diaper on, but I don’t recommend it. No, I don’t recommend it at all.