Taste Hitch– I’m a Bangkok based British blogger who has an almost spiritual love of craft beer, fine food and alliteration. My blog is an offbeat look at living in Thailand as well as commenting on what it’s like to be a dad in the land of smiles. Sometimes people laugh at my jokes. Once, someone said I was witty and I hadn’t even paid them.
The Tripple Whammy
My dad is a nurse and almost every day he saves a life. I’ve always admired his choice of profession. His actions help people in a real and tangible way, more so than any businessman could ever say.
It is a job that I didn’t think I could do.
If I’m honest, it wasn’t the stress or the hard work that made me doubt my suitability. It was the idea dealing with the bodily excretions of other people.
I’m not overly squeamish but the thought of having to clear up another person’s vomit filled me with a deep-seated repugnance.
And then I had a baby.
The other day I’d noticed a sour smell in my classroom. I’d assumed that it was just one of the many potent and unpleasant odours that Bangkok throws our way – often a heady mix of deep fried chicken, car pollution and an open sewer.
It was only at lunchtime that I realised that the boy had deposited a small nugget of vomit in my shirt pocket.
Six months ago there would have been histrionics if a baby had been sick on me, let alone if I’d been carrying around a fun-sized portion of it all day.
Now, I just straight up don’t care. I have developed a ‘whatever’ approach to the various discharges that emanate from my boy, regardless of origin.
I think I know the point at which my aversion was truly broken.
A month or two back I got home from work later than normal and raced upstairs to the boy’s room to say goodnight. His mother was running him a bath and so I lay down and stood him on my chest.
He threw up. Down my neck. As I lifted him away he decided that his bowels were full and defecated on my trousers. Knowing that, due to incapacitating and howling laughter, the wife would be of no help whatsoever, I held him over my head to stop him spreading any of his bodily evacuations around the room.
And that’s when he decided to pee.
Once you’ve lived through the triple-whammy, fretting about clearing up the more disgusting aspects of humanity seems almost churlish.
And whilst I still couldn’t clear up the bodily fluids of others like my nursing father, having the boy has given me a Zen-like appreciation of something deeply profound.
The purest love of all isn’t measured in gold or gifts; it’s measured in how much poop you’re willing to clear up.