I would like to know at what point during my transition from women with no children, to mother of two, did my interest in bowel habits start, but more importantly when will it end.
When the kids are small the mid wife, the doctor and my mum were all interested in how many dirty nappies. The barrage of questions I faced about stools, consistency and constipation was constant. I had never thought about poo so much and quite frankly I didn’t want or need to. But it takes hold so quickly, this interest in all things bowel.
When I was changing nappies I would note the colour for any changes that could indicate an underlying illness. I didn’t know what underlying illness this would be, but I was vigilant. I have never worn the colour mustard because of this process.
A rogue tummy pain would have me wondering, “when was her last poo?” I may or may not have kept a chart when they were babies, plotting the days and frequency of poo. Where was the poo emoji in 1995 when I really needed it?
Any time my children have told me they feel sick, their tummy doesn’t feel right or any ailment really, my first response is, “Are you pooing regularly?” They roll their eyes and say yes but I normally need more detail than this. When was your last poo, is it soft enough, you’re not straining are you?
Someone make me stop!
As the girls have aged I have extended my vocab to add “Are you drinking enough water?” Of course known for it’s stool softening abilities.
I knew my line of question was reaching saturation point when I was banned from using the words fibre, bowel habits, stools and poo whenever any of their friends were over.
Side note -I had already been banned from using the words nipples, perineum, vulva and areola.
So here’s my dilemma…….
Have my need to know privileges about all things bowel related with my children expired?
Just to clarify, they are 20 and 18!
Yes I still ask.
I sprook the benefits of fibre whenever I get the chance. I ask about water consumption. I disguise it now as a hydration question but we all know the truth.
The benefits of waste elimination and toxins within the body are discussed, well I guess a discussion would indicate more than one person talking about the subject. So I give a monologue to anyone within earshot really.
Now that the girls are home less I find my attention turning to my poor husband. I added fibre powder to a meal just incase he wasn’t getting enough. A solemn vow has been made never to do this again when he came home from work convinced he had a gastro bug. I was extremely sympathetic and a wonderful nurse.
Where is the off switch to mothering? I can’t just stop wanting (needing) to know that my children are healthy and taking care of themselves. I guess I now need to trust that all of the information I have given them over the years will serve them well.
And of course not forgetting the numerous songs in which I exchanged the word blue for poo. Immature I know but I read that subliminal messaging is a very powerful tool.