Will Lodge: New food can bring more than you bargain for with babies

Will Lodge and his family.

Will Lodge and his family. - Credit: Su Anderson

Our new dad columnist Will Lodge tastes – and smells – the future.

In my last column I spoke about the excitement that came from baby trying her first mouthfuls of food.

It is indeed a momentous occasion, and one which continues to excite as she tries different flavours – banana, apple, carrot and spaghetti to name but a few.

She even had a sneaky taste of chocolate ice cream, which was worth it purely for the look of bafflement from baby at the sheer coldness of it.

However this excitement is regularly tempered by an outcome I should have considered, but which my mind had conveniently forgotten.

Yes, I am talking about poo.

Dirty nappies are a topic I have tried to shy away from talking about, but perhaps now is the time for a frank discussion on what is, let’s face it, one of the things babies are best known for as a species and an issue which is key to all parents.

Most Read

For those blissfully ignorant, let me explain.

What comes out of a baby’s bottom is never going to smell like roses, obviously, but without getting all Gillian McKeith about it you are what you eat.

While a baby is only drinking milk there is for the most part a relatively odourless – or non-offensive – character and stable colour to the contents of their nappy.

But once you introduce food into the mix, it suddenly becomes a myriad of shades and smells which are distinctly less pleasant than those which came before.

Consistency also becomes much more variable and, again for those not in the know, this is important.

A slight misfitting of a nappy, or missing a full one and placing baby on her bottom, can lead to all sorts of incidents involving a lot of wet wipes and a change of clothes.

All I can say is roll on the solids.

There is some angst to come before we reach that stage though – the dreaded teething.

Fortunately our baby is not at that stage yet. Despite the odd grouchy afternoon and occasional desire to chew on anything within reach, there are no clear or consistent signs of impending teeth.

However it is something I am dreading.

For the vast majority of the time we have a very cheerful child, but I have heard all sorts of horror stories about how even the most charming and well-slept of babes can become a grouchy, awake-all-night monster when incisors and canines approach the horizon.

As with everything like this I need be more like my wife, a cool and calm eye in the storm of hustle, bustle and worry around us.

After all, if I’m not worried about teething then it will only be the next thing – will she be safe when she starts walking, and what about school, and she is NOT going out wearing that, and there will be trouble if she’s not home by 11pm.

Ultimately we will always worry about our children, sometimes openly but mostly subconsciously. So there is no point in worrying about the worrying.

More parenting dilemmas from Superdad Will Lodge here.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter