Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Diaper Story

My husband Greg was recovering from a pretty serious wreck, several sub sequent surgeries and a MRSA staff infection. He was in bed at home, recovering from the infection. He was being seen regularly by home health care personnel and receiving IV antibiotics daily. We had 3 small children, the youngest of whom was only three months old. Because of the seriousness of his infection, the doctors had advised us to not allow the baby to be in the same room with Greg, or to let Rusty interact with him. So I had all of the responsibility of caring for Rusty.

I also had all of the responsibility for everything else. Greg’s job was to heal.

When shopping, I had noticed that one of the ketchup companies had developed a new color of ketchup: green. I loved it! It is nice to have variety with ordinary things. I couldn’t wait to purchase and try the new ketchup. It tasted the same as always. It smelled the same; it just had a different color, that’s all. My kids thought it looked gross. They wanted their ketchup to be like it had always been. They wouldn’t eat it. They insisted that I continue to buy the red ketchup too.

I like to keep my sense of humor, even through trying times. So, I developed a plan.

One of Greg’s close friends, Steven, had come to visit him. He was in our bedroom, sitting in a chair beside our bed talking to Greg. I went into
Rusty’s room and got a clean unused diaper. I took it into the kitchen and poured green ketchup onto the clean diaper.

Then, I opened the door to our bedroom and talked to Greg.

I said, “Honey, I just wanted to let you know that the baby is sick. He has a stomach virus”

He said, “OK.”

I said, “It is really bad!” He nodded.

I said, “Look!!” I held up the diaper containing the green ketchup.

He made a face and said, “OK.” His friend was looking at something around his own feet.

I said, “No, I don’t think you understand! It doesn’t just look gross. It stinks to high heaven!!”

I moved the ketchup-laden diaper to my nose, took a whiff, made a face and looked back at Greg.

He frowned. His voice said “OK, Kathy!”. But his tone said ‘You can hush and leave now, before you embarrass me any further in front of my friend!’ Steven briefly glanced at me, then the floor, then at Greg, then back at the floor.

I could tell that they just wanted me to go away with all of my mother-baby gross diaper issues so that they could continue with their conversation. But I wasn’t finished yet.

I said “And you know what? It especially even tastes horrible!” I then moved the diaper up to my mouth, stuck out my tongue, and licked some of the green ketchup. As I lowered the diaper, I made a bad face.

Greg was obviously horrified, judging by the look on his face. His eyes were huge as he stared hard at me. Steven looked at me and then to the floor. He was staring hard at the floor. As a matter of fact, he looked like he just might be sick. He had a look on his face that seemed to say, “Ohhhhh, I know I didn’t just see what I thought I saw. But, yet, I know I did.”

I continued standing in the doorway, looking at the two of them as if nothing had happened.

Slowly, I saw the corners of Greg’s mouth begin to turn upward as his brow smoothed out and his eyes returned to normal size; he began to chuckle. The chuckle turned into a hard laugh as he figured out what I had done. I, too, began to laugh with him. But Steven continued staring hard at the floor. Greg started explaining to Steven what I had done. He assured him that I had licked only green ketchup. Steven finally looked up from the floor at Greg and nodded, relieved. I was laughing.

I had my fun. I decided to leave them alone.


copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

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