I've read and heard that many young babies do a poop after every feed. The Babycrat, on the other hand, does one on an average of every ten days and sometimes longer. (We checked with the pediatrician, who said that's fine for breastfed babies.)
Which means there have been not that many poopy diapers to be changed. And the Babycrat had been cooperative for a while and pooped only when the Resident Bureaucrat* was around to help change the poopy diapers, which means I didn't have do any cleaning up.
But my luck was bound to run out.
One day, when I was alone at home with the Babycrat, his face suddenly took on the strained expression of a baby trying to poop. I tried to implore the Babycrat to "hold it until your father gets home, okay?".
He paid me no heed, of course.
He then proceeded to do a very big and a very smelly one and since no one was around at that time, the job of cleaning up fell on me.
When I opened up his diaper, I gagged at the fumes that hit me.
But the worst was yet to come.
His bottom was all smeared with poop. How does one begin to clean that off? What do I rest his bum on when I go get the wet wipes? Back on the dirty diaper? Or on the clean changing mat? In the end, using one hand (and an elbow and a leg or two), I lined the changing mat with toilet paper while keeping his butt off the mat by pulling his legs up in the air like he was a trussed up chicken.
The next problem. How to clean off smeary poop? I tried using more toilet paper, but it wasn't getting the job done. And the smell was still making me gag.
Then I thought I would just put the Babycrat under the tap and wash away the poop.
Carrying him gingerly and very away from my body, I took him to the bathroom and tried to put him under the sink when I realised he didn't fit very well under the tap. And the sink was slippery and I found it hard to stop him from sliding around the washbasin.
So I tried to hose him down in the shower instead. As I turned on the tap, a spray of water hit the Babycrat at the same time that I suddenly remembered some babies were scared by sudden gushes of water. Fortunately, the Babycrat seemed to be quite hardy and appeared unfazed.
The shower spray worked, and soon, the Babycrat was clean and diapered up again.
Unfortunately, while spraying at the Babycrat, I sprayed half the water on myself. (It is not easy to hold a baby away from my body while making sure I didn't drop him, while trying to hold on to the shower hose while turning on the tap, while testing the temperature of the water, all at the same time.)
And I have well and truly been broken in as a mother, I think. What are round the clock feeds and hours of walking up and down carrying the baby coaxing him to sleep compared to the changing of a smelly diaper?
And those who say that a breastfed baby's diapers are not smelly should come and change one for me.
*He volunteered for diaper duty. Because he is anal.