Friday, May 20, 2011

In sickness and in health

When Paul and I got married we wrote our own vows, and from memory I wasn’t big on the ‘in sickness and in health’ notion.  I am more of the suffer-in-silence type. You’re sick? Well, build-a-bridge-and-get-over-it type.

Clearly, I wasn’t thinking of off-spring at that stage.  By their very nature, babies are fairly dependent beings.  You pretty much have to do everything for them.  Don’t get me wrong, I sort of guessed that before ours came along. I had even come to grips with nappy changes that assaulted even the most hardy of olfactory systems.  But what I wasn’t counting on was that other bodily fluid, snot.

What is it with snot? It seems to haunt me. For 14 years I worked in a job that seemed to have an unnatural preoccupation with the stuff. We would sit in clinical meetings for hours discussing the colour, the volume and the consistency of other people’s snot.  At times the discussions even became quite animated, and all the while we ate our lunch.  At one stage of my career, I even wrote a children’s picture book which had a central theme of - you guessed it, snot!

So, as I was saying, what is it with snot?

Despite having moved on from that job, I still seem to be surrounded by the omnipresent fluid.  This week, the short one has taken on the role of patient; while I have been a little less so.  I am guessing that if her nose was a tap and a plumber saw it, he would be madly trying to fit a new washer.  I ask you, how can someone so small produce so much fluid?

Call it what you will – mucus, boogers, phlegm, nasal discharge - snot is all encompassing and unrelenting, regardless of its moniker.  Surely it’s been around since the early stages of homo sapien development, so…why hasn’t anyone come up with a fluid retardant? Surely it can’t be that difficult!