Seriously, I’m at the end of my tether.
It’s been happening on and off now for the last couple of months.
It started happening probably about 6 months ago I think was the first time. Then there was a really bad incident of it and it didn’t happen again until about 2 months ago. But now it’s happening again with alarming regularity, in fact I am writing this post after the most recent occurrence of it about half an hour ago, and I NEED IT TO STOP!
I needed it to stop as soon as it feckin well started. But it hasn’t. It has continued.
And now it’s showing no signs of stopping.
For starters, I’m growing very tired of having to clean up every time it happens.
Actually, let me re-phrase that. I am SICK TO THE BACK TEETH of cleaning up every time it happens.
We do not have enough spare cot sheets and cot duvets and cot duvet-covers and cot pillows and cot waterproof undersheets to account for the increasingly frequent number of occasions that call on a bedding change and high-temperature wash.
I am also SICK TO THE BACK TEETH of hearing myself say out loud, in a firm and slow (to ensure no avoidance of doubt and maximum level of understanding) voice, with more than a hint of frustration and barely contained anger:
“DO NOT TAKE YOUR NAPPY OFF IN BED”
But to no avail.
She keeps on doing it. Keeps on doing that ONE thing that I have kept on repeatedly asking her (in both good cop and bad cop approaches to the situation) NOT TO DO.
“KEEP YOUR NAPPY ON IN BED”
“DO NOT TAKE YOUR NAPPY OFF BY YOURSELF”
” DO NOT TAKE YOUR NAPPY OFF UNLESS MUMMY OR DADDY OR
NONNO OR NONNA OR GRANNY OR GRANDDAD ARE THERE TO HELP YOU”
Allegra WILLFULLY ignores my requests, my instructions, my begging, my pleading.
I know I am biased, but I would say in virtually all other ways, she is an incredibly intelligent child who understands so much and is capable of so many things.
But with this, no. She is just not getting it. Or, she is REFUSING to get it.
I have tried the happy-go-lucky-no-biggie-but-it-would-be-awfully-nice-if-you-could-please-be-ever-so-kind-as-to-keep-your-nappy-on-tonight-darling-daughter-thanks-ever-so voice. She has ignored it and proceeded to take her nappy off.
I have tried the positively-fuming-mummy-is-very-very-very-cross-with-Allegra-for-taking-her-nappy-off-in-bed-and-daddy-is-cross-and-nonna-is-cross-and-nonno-is-cross-and-aunty-chrissy-is-cross-so-don’t-ever-do-it-again voice. She has ignored it and done it again the very next evening. Sometimes even twice in the same evening.
Help me out here people. I am in the worst kind of poo-smeared, wee-sodden, bedclothes-cleaning, toddler-hosing-down-in-the-bath, kind of groundhog day and frankly, it is DRIVING ME SODDING WELL TO DISTRACTION!
Why oh why oh why oh why is she doing it?!
In fact, I ask her that frequently:
Me: “Allegra, why do you take your nappy off when mummy says you mustn’t take your nappy off, because you get covered in poo and that’s not nice, it’s dirty?”
Allegra: “Yeah, why mummy?”
Me: “Allegra, I’m asking Allegra why? Why do you do it?”
Allegra: “Yeah, why?” *said in inquisitive tone of voice as if seeking to genuinely understand why and expect me to know the answer*
Me: “No, Mummy is asking YOU why? Mummy is asking Allegra why?”
Allegra: “Yeah, why?” *said in increasingly inquisitive tone of voice, with bemused face as if she fails to understand why I just don’t answer the question and put us both out of our misery*
*I walk away, head in hands in frustration (not before checking there is no poo or wee on my hands*
It used to only ever happen on the odd evening when I’d put Allegra to bed at night. At its worst, I went in to check on her about an hour after I’d put her to bed to find her lying, butt naked, face down and fast asleep on a mattress smeared with her own faeces. It was a sight (and a smell) to behold. After recovering from the initial shock, I optimistically went at her with the baby-wipes, before realising quite quickly I was facing a losing battle and had to wake her up, get her up, and hose her down in the bath.
This was a bad experience all round and she didn’t take off her nappy again for a long time after that episode. Phew, I thought, she’s over it.
What a fool I was.
For it seems that memory faded and she’s back to her nappy-removing tricks once more.
Only this time it’s happening during daytime nap times as well as nightime bed times.
I seriously do not have enough cot bedding (or patience) (or rubber gloves) (or hand sanitiser) to deal with the possibility of a twice or even thrice a day episode.
I put her to bed and then it’s like a game of Russian roulette. Do I go in 2 minutes after I put her down, to double check she’s not stripping or already naked and poo-ing or wee-ing in her cot, but then risk disturbing her as she’s about to drop off to sleep and then have to start the whole “no darling, it’s time to go to sleep, it’s not time for row row row your boat or head shoulders knees and toes” thing again?
Or, do I leave it say 15 minutes or so until after I’ve left the room before going back in, when there’s a higher chance she’ll have fallen asleep, but an even higher chance – given the increased time available to her uninterrupted – that she’ll be butt naked, nappy cast aside, lying in a pool of her own bodily fluids or worse.
If I could think of some way to prevent her stripping off and stripping down then that might crack it, but she’s like bloody Houdini. She easily gets out of a sleeping bag, a vest with poppers at the crotch, and all known types of toddler pyjamas. Do they make such a thing as strait-jackets for under 5s? – or would that be frowned upon….?
Do I just leave her to fester in her own mess in a “that’ll learn her” approach? – again, probably would be frowned upon and possibly even result in being reported to social services.
Somebody, anybody, tell me what to do?!