The Newborn Diaries: Spider-Babe

20/06/2011 10:29 | Updated 22 May 2015
The Newborn Diaries: Spider-BabeSpider-Babe in action

Here's what I learned this week as a parent: It doesn't take a superhero to scale couches, walls or changing tables.

I'd like to introduce you to Spider-Babe, aka baby D (see pics above).

While I can jest about it now, attempting to change Diana is now the most stressful part of the day, even when we're at home. And while a drink (most definitely alcoholic) would normally be essential to prepare for this type of tear-inducing activity, the point of the exercise is that I'm trying NOT to drop the baby - so I can't even get that release.

Baby D cannot sit still on the changing table any more. When she started rolling, I thought things were bad, but I had no clue of what was to come. A nappy change these days is always accompanied by D either flipping every which way and then perching on the edge of the table to prepare for fling-off, or trying to climb the wall to bounce up and down. She'll also writhe and wriggle, stomp and slither and toss and turn throughout.

Any movement she makes on the table is stress-inducing enough on its own, considering D is perilously perched several feet above the ground. Factor in that she's probably crying and screaming at the top of her lungs while this is happening and simultaneously peeing on me, rubbing her poo-covered nappy all over her legs and trying to grab the poo-and-pee covered wipe out of my hand and you can imagine why I'm ready to have a breakdown whenever I need to change a nappy.

This is my life five times a day on average. Seven+ when she has diarrhoea (like last week's teething drama).

If it's this scary in my own home, you can imagine how things get in public. Baby changing units in restrooms come equipped with seatbelts so you can fasten your child in; baby D wriggles out of them immediately. She is sometimes appeased by trying to chew on the straps and while that temporarily distracts her from attempting a double roundoff backhand spring off the changing table, she's chewing on a belt that has probably touched the filthy (but cute) butts of 100,000 babes. Not exactly a happy alternative.

(And I've tried giving D a toy or bottle of milk to distract her. This worked at first, but now Diana is mobile even while holding onto objects. Is there any hope?)

The other (rather unappetising) option is changing D on the floor, which is what has to happen when there is no baby change. I become a pro-wrestler in these situations, trying to pin the babe to the ground before she can crawl over to the toilet bowl and jump in. D is so strong-willed (and strong, even at 20-something pounds!) that she is a force to be reckoned with every time.

So it now takes me a minimum of 15 minutes to emerge from the toilets with D. When I finally do, I am exhausted, dishevelled, red-faced, profusely sweating and my biceps feel really sore.

And I usually really need to pee.

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