(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?