independent

Thursday 24 April 2014

I've danced more often than I have changed nappies

I'VE CERTAINLY danced more often than I have changed nappies that is one thing I can guarantee every single person who cares to read this sentence.

The reason I know is quite simple, up until last Friday I had never changed a nappy, not even once in an emergency.

Up until two weeks ago I had one niece and one nephew and I was glad to say changing their nappies was never something i was seriously asked to do but last Friday something came over me.

Call it an uncle's intuition but my sister in law came into her sitting room to find me holding her daughter and the two of us were having a right old time. First I gave her a bottle, which she wolfed down in a matter of seconds. She's definitely an O'Donoghue that's for sure.

My sister in law who for the purpose of this article we will call, Diane, tells me that Amy needs to be changed.

My usual response in the past would always be to hand the baby over as if someone had just told me a bomb was about to explode.

This bomb seemed different though, there was going to be no explosion, I could handle this one.

I suggested to Diane that I change this nappy and luckily there was a chair nearby to catch her as she nearly grew faint on me.

Let me park that story there and talk about dancing for a moment. I'm not a great dancer not by any stretch of the imagination but ever since I was partnered beside the fabulous Alex O'Brien for Tullow's Strictly Come Dancing fundraiser I've started to learn that my whole body doesn't have to move all at once.

For example, did you know you can swing your hips and keep your upper body straight? I'm not joking, this is possible.

Weeks of dancing lessons have thought me that much and the reason behind it is simple.

Teamwork describes it best and Alex is a great teammate along with Robyn our dance instructor and without them I'd be lost. They have slowly moulded me into someone who can wiggle, shake and even hit the floor. Proud as punch I am. It's all about teamwork, sticking with one another and encouragement and practice and above all communication.

Now back to the my niece Amy. I got up and carried her over to the reserved area for baby changing known as the sofa with a changing mat on top. I spread out a towel over it and lay her down and we had a little pep talk.

"Ok Aims, here's the story, we're in this together, it's you and me against this nappy and I am not going to be beaten by a piece of cloth, no way" I said. "eh" she said. "Right Amy this is not nap time, this is not bottle time, I need you here as much as you need me so let's do this" I say.

I couldn't believe this two week old girl knew what to do, as up came the little legs and I found the tab where you pull and the nappy opens.

Automatically down came the legs and she allowed me to slide the back of the nappy out and reassured me I was doing ok by saying "ick" and I continued by wiping all the necessary areas and applied some sudo cream, to em, well, I don't know why that cream goes on, but Amy said it does so on it went.

The next bit was not so easy. The new nappy. The tabs are closed and its difficult to rip them open when you don't have nails. Amy started to get a little impatient and the legs started to wriggle at me but eventually i found the tabs and had her sealed in nice and tight.

It was almost time for the world's smallest high five but then came the issue of buttoning up the little "onesie", vest, thing with the buttons that go all the way along the legs and everything and it was very confusing, but we got there in the end in an impressive time of just under 20 minutes.

The bottom line is, that just like dancing, changing nappies is all about teamwork. My niece gets the whole team thing and we worked great together. I'm already looking forward to the next one, kinda!

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