Apr 10, 2015
(Be forewarned, there’s a doctor visit with a slightly graphic female parts description coming up .)
At Fiona’s recent Doctor’s office check-up, the doctor’s last bodily inventory check was her diddle, or as I call it, her twinkle. And then he checked it again. And he explains to me that her inner lips around her urethra had partially joined back together. Meaning that the smaller exit area for her pee can be of concern for future cause for infection. And of course I’m knowing, this was all my fault and here’s why.
First everything that befalls our children is somehow our fault. And this I knew had happened because I hadn’t been diligent enough in cleaning her diddle. Surely better wiping would have prevented this. He said it was a common problem. This is my excuse.
While I changed her diaper when she was a tiny baby, I would have visions I couldn’t unsee. Adults wielding incredible power and her meekness. She was so tiny and vulnerable it was painful to think about all the wee people across the globe experiencing atrocities I never wanted to know about. Female circumcisions and rapes and monstrous crimes against their little persons and bodies. Something in my Mom mind just kept recognizing the vulnerability of this baby.
When my son was a baby, I had read up on keeping him clean and from what I read, uric acid is a sterile acid and doesn’t cause infection. I’d wipe really well after she pooped but her body would also keep the poop from going where it shouldn’t. I’d check to make sure but wouldn’t work too hard at cleaning it out. I always put soap in the tub and give her a good swipe through her butt area when I gave her a bath. All good then.
The doctor did not disagree or admonish me for any of this. He has prescribed me some estrogen cream to apply daily to her inner labia to help the skin thin and separate. And there I am doing the thing that I’d tried to avoid, diddling with her diddle. She doesn’t like it. She says “Ow” when you go to apply the cream. Because I think it’s instinctual for children to know what’s private on their body as it is to want to poop in private. I go back in a week to find out if were good to go. If my intrusive diddling can end.
I’m doing what the doctor told me. I’ve got my game face and all business-mode down but I’d like to stop now. I know that I’ll have to teach my daughter how to wipe herself when we actually get to the potty training. It’s a fine balance between showing her how to take care of her body, taking care of her body, and going too far in taking care of her body. To teach her to respect her body and say no to bad touch when I am walking a fine line in the touching department. Such is the mortar of parenthood’s bricks.
Girls are higher maintenance folks.
Anything else you need to warn me about in your experience?
Apr 8, 2015
I know you think I am a nice person. And I am most of the time. But a patient person? Having a toddler has shown me all of my imperfect impatient downfalls. These became glaringly apparent when we went to dye Easter eggs this past Saturday morning. How quickly I had forgotten the Christmas cookie baking lesson.
I thought I would be able to figure something out on the fly. Give her a way to dye the eggs. But boom, she’s trying to lay the egg down on the flat table, grabbing the cups of dye, and there’s just no way to baby proof this event. As I was already twitching from the rest of the morning, the moment she took the egg and crushed it in her fist, I knew we were done.
I bloody well love dying Easter eggs. It’s totally a thing for me. Mandatory seasonal crafting along with carving pumpkins. But there are certain things that need to be done without two year-olds and this was one of them. I didn’t mention the brain exploding amount of patience it took the other day to hold the bubbles for like 45 minutes straight while she attempted to blow them, did I. I’ve just gotten rid of the eye twitch and pray it won’t return.
Yes, some women are born to have and raise children with infinite patience and no other expectations. Pas moi. I could do without this toddler phase except for the utter heart stabbing cuteness of her saying “Wogger” for water. And the shrieking contagious giggles she gets when her Dad zerberts her on her tummy.
So I am now completely aware that again, I’m not a toddler crafter. I need to leave this stuff to the pros. I’ve learned my lesson. And I’d like to apologize to Fiona, and I just might some day, but not today. I am however secretly praying she doesn’t take this event personally and have it thrown back in my face at age thirteen.
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Apr 6, 2015
I wrote a piece a little while back about my First Time. Yes, that first time ergo the capitals. The resulting response, especially from former boyfriends, was fascinating. As a young woman, I raged against the objectification of my body while simultaneously basing my self-esteem and power on the way I looked. Yet I can tell you, I have never thought that my body was anything to be that proud of. And I honestly can’t ever remember saying “I’m beautiful” or the word “enough” when it came to my body image.
Here I am perusing these images of my younger body thinking, what a daggone shame I couldn’t see how very lovely I was. Always adoring other bodies as “better”. Always in need of some improvement from tanner skin to less to pinch to whiter straighter teeth.
My fellow blogger and friend Heather Serody wrote in this post on her blog Big Girl Life, after a steady daily ritual of losing weight with exercise and eating right, she said she needed to go ahead and kill her weight ghost. She said she had arrived at a new norm for her expectations of her daily life style as being healthy, yes…BUT she goes on to say, “Until very recently (try last month) I always believed that despite any other efforts I was making towards being healthy, … I should ALSO be the weight I was in high school.” She concludes that she was imprisoned by a “success or failure mentality for decades”. She went and wrote that “ideal” weight down on a piece of paper and burned it ceremoniously. The ghost was killed.
Her takeaway was this. “Allowing the past to dictate my relative success or failure in the present time is nothing more than chasing a part of yourself that no longer exists…The culture of staying active and strong, when it gets implanted deep into who you are, frees you from all or nothing thinking. The big goal is to live an active life, eat healthy, and try to squeeze every drop of joy from living that truth.” Amen sister.
I will never be the weight I was when I was here at 19 or 25 or even possibly 30 again. I am resolved that the spastic little gal I was who smoked and was the energizer bunny waitress for all those years won’t be resurrected. And that’s fine by me. I’m making progress using the My Fitness Pal app and have already hit my pre-baby size 12. I can fit into my clothing again and that’s amazing. And I can proudly say that my heart, the one muscle that needs to be in shape with weekly exercise, is healthy and strong.
Now is the time to make sure my head is also in the most beautiful shape it can be after so many years of low self-esteem. Seeing these lovely pictures of my teenage self has brought a new compassion for myself and all the young women of America who have fallen prey to the media’s self-image cruelty. And I killed my weight ghost as soon as I read Heather’s piece last November. Living in the now and being grateful for it is the gift I want to continue to give myself for the rest of my life.
How do you hold yourself hostage? If only I’d… If I could just… When I get to this point, I’ll …