Dire Rear

The washing machine is going full-pelt. Harry’s fever is down and his rash is fading, but the Hairy Farmer Family are struck down by the Meanie Bug. So called, because a tummy bug that is unkind enough to infect a baby barely recuperating from the ‘Virus That Sounded Meningitisy But Wasn’t’ obviously hasn’t heard of fair dos, but there you are. John has been vaguely sicky, I have had tummy cramps after meals, and Harry has been scoured by the longest, most fluid farts I’ve ever heard, bovines included. 3ft geysers of yellow liquid have liberally sprinkled both parents, the carpets and all his clothes. I don’t know why I took a photo, but I did, so I will make you look in the hope that you may then share my pain, if not my laundry detergent bill. 


The poor lad doesn’t look dehydrated, but he patently isn’t feeling top of the pops.

Just to complicate things, Harry is the baby that Does Not Drink. We junked regular expressing pretty much immediately we got around the corner from the SCBU, and he’s been solely breast fed ever since. We discovered at Harry’s Christening party in November that he was no longer au fait with the whole bottle thing – inconvenient at the time, as I had specifically expressed that afternoon before getting fairly rat-arsed. Harry emphatically rejected all attempts to insert milk into his parched little mouth via an artificial nipple: he insisted on the real thing; which he eventually had to have, booze and all. His refusal to accept all imitations means we cannot lure him into drinking water. We have a cupboard bulging with every sippy cup, bottle and teat on the market. Won’t have ’em. Not one. Screams if you persist. Our only successes have been an occasional sip from the doidy cup, and a few slurps daily through a straw. This is the baby that managed to constipate himself for 8 days on breastmilk, so we shovel green veg down him in heaped-high quantities these days to keep him… flowing, shall we say.

Diarrhoea and a fluid-phobic under-the-weather-anyway baby do not couple well, so I would normally be carting him A) up the hill to Delightful Doctors Next Door if we were very concerned or B) down the GPs 9am tomorrow. There will be a slight delay, however. Tomorrow, 9am, is Harry’s Development Check.

Our two Health Visitors (community nurse specialising in kids) are pleasant & knowledgeable women. It’s just that I take even gentle criticism two ways: badly, and worse. And their advice, sovereign as I’m sure it is, doesn’t always suit us. I get my knickers tightly, painfully twisted in particular about their blind spot regarding Harry’s weight. Apparently, a baby who wavers from his weight-gain centile line should be manoeuvred back to it. Which is fine if you’re some other baby I don’t care either way about. Not if you’re my son and born IUGR, in which case: bugger orf! I think they forget that he was so tiny to begin with, and I’m so busy clamping my lips tight (we’re British, you know, and Do Not Publically Make Waves) that I haven’t reminded them. 

After an injudicious (I should know better than to blab) bleating from me about how lousy Harry was at staying quietly asleep, questions were rapid-fired and the fact elicited that Harry still slept in our room. Despite the fact that half the world shares a bed, never mind a room, his proximity to us was indicted for all our problems. Out, she said. It’s Time, she said. Hmmm, I replied. BUGGER OFF! I roared in the silent vaults of my mind, where I am less socially constrained by the need Not To Publicly Confront Nice Ladies. And then she opined that Harry would be Better Off in his Own Room. Weeks later I am still reeling, collar-contents on fire, from this statement. Had she told us that Harry would be less disturbed by our snorts and snoring in his own room, I would have taken no issue with her remarks. Or had she said that hubby and I would get a better night’s sleep without his squawking close by, I could not have disagreed. But to tell me that our son would be better off without my presence was, I felt, broadly incorrect. 

Incidentally: the period? Still going, albeit less enthusiastically. Day 43. I think my previous best was 6 weeks, so I should probably toddle down the GP myself. I wonder if this is some kind of menstrual record?

3 Responses

  1. Oh that poo pic is so gross lol.

    DS recently turned 4 (years) and we’re all still happily co-sleeping. How DARE that HV tell you that H’s sleep probs are because of co-sleeping. SHE doesn’t have to sleep with him if she doesn’t want to!

    You clearly know what is best for your son, and the HVs can rightly fuck off.

  2. […] months old today, Harry is not yet in a position to lambast me for putting photos of his runaway dumps on the internet. He will no doubt hold me accountable for these numerous breaches of his […]

  3. […] I have posted a photo of a spectacular geyser of baby Dire Rear. […]

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