Human Sheep Dip - why we need it by Rhianon

[advert:mpu]Despite this delicious weather we’ve all been ill. Again. What’s with us? Was Michael Jackson for real when he lived in a bubble or was it all a publicity stunt? Because I’m beginning to think that a house-sized bubble is about the only chance we’ve got to get rid of all these damned germs. That or a huge vat of Dettol we can wade through like sheep dip.

I mean, I might as well rub all our food in the mud and forget the baths - we haven’t gone a week without infection since the birth!

This time it was gastroenteritis (a fancy tummy bug, right?) and down we went with it, one by one, first dp, then ds1* then me, then… worst of all… baby.

His appetite seemed to be a bit off Wednesday, but he had one, huge hour long feed at 9pm which put my mind at rest. That was the last of it though – he didn’t feed again that night or all day. By the afternoon, I’d called the doctor and was desperately trying to shove the 6oz of rehydration solution down him the GP had said the baby needed.

But little ds2 was having none of it – I tried the usual ridiculous range of different teats and cups, getting more and more frustrated as he was obviously getting more distressed and ended up using a 1ml medicine syringe to get 200ml into him. That worked, but even my addled brain could tell me I’d be there till Tuesday getting anywhere near that amount into him. By now it was 5pm and he had been screaming for quite some hours (I’m not prepared to publicly admit how many, suffice to say I had tinnitus), and a friend with more empathy for my baby than I have suggested I take him to A&E. Good plan, and we would have been seen pretty quickly if they hadn’t booked my 7 week old in as an adult…

Anyway, a few hours later a very, very kind nurse at Lewisham had given the baby a thorough check-up and a large dose of paracetamol and me a large glass of water (though even she said I looked like I needed a gin). There must have been a mammoth sigh for a two mile radius as his howling reduced to a grizzle. At least I didn’t get so many evil eyes as I wandered around settling him. I know how it is – you always spit at the parents when their baby’s crying, don’t you? They can never do enough.

I was keeping dp updated on the phone as he got to the hospital, saying the baby would probably be kept in overnight on a drip, but predictably, just 10 minutes before he turned up the baby stopped crying and started feeding. ‘He looks alright – what were you worried about?’ were his first words. Double grrrrr.

*ds refers to 'dear son' and dp is 'dear partner'

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