This morning after our walk (three miles, six days a week, baby!) a girlfriend tells me about an incident where she was shopping in a thrift store with her young baby and suddenly she realized a couple other patrons were saying cruel things about her. “Why doesn’t she change that baby’s diaper?” one sneers to the other, “It smells so bad!” In Point of Fact my friend had just changed the diaper – she just had a baby who was particularly stinky that particular day.
My friend is telling this story not consciously looking for empathy from the two of us listening but in response to an Actual Factual Hogaboom Event I had just related, whereby on Tuesday morning my mother was awakened at 7 AM not by the noises of my children or to her own internal clock but when the smell of pee from my son’s diaper hit her like a brick wall. Honestly, folks. It woke her up from across the room. I think she thought for a moment a wolverine had climbed through our window and made a nest in the crib.
Oh, wait – I guess I should warn you this is a “bodily functions” post. Is it too late?
My son retains the most lovely fragrances around his neck, his hair, almost every part of his skin. Daytime diaper changes are a non-issue, only smelling slightly of urine which to non-parents may be disgusting but to those of us raising young children I compare it to the nuisance a veteran porn star might feel if asked to flash her boobs on the set to get the lighting angle right. That is to say, a little pee is no problem. However, whatever Foulness the boy brews up in the witching hour, or whether it’s a time-release thing that the relatively swift daytime diaper changes thwart, I am here to tell you that both Ralph and I are appalled and slightly saddened by this development nine mornings out of ten. Tears sting our eyes as we lift our son out of his blankets and the scent of Marinating Bear Ass overpowers us. Tears that quickly gather in force as we each realize that one of us must deal with this, because no one else is going to.
No one else.