Thursday, 17 July 2008

A cheeky request

I have been preoccupied by my baby's bottom.

Obviously because it is round and perfect and delightful, but it also has eczema and I have run out of ideas how to treat it. Friends, agony aunts, health visitors, dermatologists - over to you.

I am pretty sure it is eczema and not common or garden nappy rash because my usual tricks (airtime and Sudocrem) haven't worked. The rash is not spotty, either, but uniform patches of dry, red skin. I have tried pretty much every cream now: petroleum jelly, E45, something that looks and smells like Metanium Ointment but it's a South African brand and the instructions are in Afrikaans. (It might even be oil paint - who knows?) I have stopped using all Johnson's products as they make her go dry and flaky all over. I put olive oil in the bath: when she comes out I want to put her in the oven with onions and some garlic.

The only thing that seems to 'cure' it - it's only temporary - is sticking her in disposable nappies. I hate doing this. Disposable nappies are twice the price as they are back home, hideous for the environment wherever you are in the world but even more so in a country where rubbish is collected and then dumped somewhere convenient where little kids pick through it for anything they can use. Or eat. (She still uses a disposable at night, though - something's got to give.) I have looked all over Kampala in vain for non-bio detergent, in the belief that it's what I wash them in that's the problem. Then my friend told me yesterday that the bio/non-bio distinction is a bit of a con anyway.

Very reluctantly I have started using steroid cream to try and crack this thing. But in the long term I know it's a bad idea - thins the skin, discolouration, etc. I don't want to give up the nappies - they cost £270 and were barely used with E and G, and I want value for money.

Any suggestions? No remedy too wacky for consideration. To all the homeopaths, hippies and herbalists I've offended in the past, I apologise.

I'm all ears.

Sunday, 6 July 2008

Born on the 4th of July

This is a message to my BEST FRIEND who had a baby yesterday.

Dearest BBH
Am aching to see you, be with you, squeal with you about the 'birth story', ooh and ahhh and pinch the small cheeks of the tiny young chap, sit on your bed, fuss round you, make tea, change a nappy (even), bore you with tips, tire you with gossip, and generally jump for joy at such a happy event. I am jumping for joy, just in Ganda; tremors can be felt throughout the land. If I were home all of you would be under a small mountain of flowers, chocolates, cuddly toys and the odd How to Make Your Infant Sleep manual. I can't do any of the above, but here is something for now:

Big love to the proud daddy. Miss you. xxx