Or any child cold for that matter; they don’t have to be common…
I’ve never truthfully been able to answer the interview question: “Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?”
When I was living on my own in a flat next to the sea on the south coast of England, not for a minute would I have envisioned myself enthusing about a product that allows you to help with a child cold by sucking mucus from a baby’s nose, just half a decade later.
Our 3-year-old started pre-school two weeks ago and along with the new uniform, the letters about school photos, and the weekly library book, Alfie has also brought home with him the first of the nursery child colds.
Ah yes, the “snotty-nosed kids” are no longer just a caricature referred to by miserly old men who burst any ball that accidentally lands in their weed-filled garden; they are now my children and their friends.
Being 3, Alfie is a good communicator. He lets us wipe his nose and he lets us blow it when he needs.
Nasal spray. It’s like a tsunami up the nostrils; no baby is going to sleep through that.
Si-si, being only 6 months old, is yet to learn any of the communication skills of her brother. Therefore, when we’re either downstairs at night with the monitor on, or in bed with her close by, we can hear the snuffles and coughs of the child cold.
Worse still, we can hear the distress when Sienna wakes up because she’s having trouble sleeping through the constant drip from her sinuses into her throat.
We’d tried all the usual things. Putting books under one end of her bed to tilt it up. Snufflebabe vapour rub, which is brilliant in the latter stages or just for bunged up noses.
Sterimar nasal spray. Again, it does the job but it’s not easy to have to administer. Cruel to be kind with that one, although it works. That said it’s like a tsunami up the nostrils, so no baby is going to sleep through that.
Just Suck It and See
Then at the weekend, on our quest to by the umpteenth pot of vapour rub, we saw the Snufflebabe Nasal Aspirator.
OH. MY. WORD.
That night Sienna was asleep when, through the monitor, the noise of a sleeping baby soon turned into the cacophony of a thousand bubbling geysers. (She’ll love to read this back when she’s a teenager.)
Being a Dad puts you in a hundred and one scenarios you’d never had imagined 5 years’ previously. Here was another.
So it was, cradling my baby in my arm, I held one end of the Snufflebabe Nasal Aspirator in my mouth and positioned the other at the opening of my daughter’s nostril.
Then, like Fungus the Bogeyman drawing enjoying his own recipe for a thickshake, I sucked.
What Snot To Like?
The aspirator is a tube. At one end there’s a disc to prevent it going too far into the baby’s nostril, at the other end a bulb in which there’s a filter. Not even the most doting father wants to imbibe their child’s “nose dirt” (to quote my secondary school English teacher as he admonished a classmate of mine).
It’s not a pleasant image. It’s not a pleasant act. But the relief to see the blockage physically clearing, knowing their child cold isn’t going to trouble them for a good while again; it’s just heavenly.
Sienna barely stirred. A quick wipe with a tissue, a quick rinse, and Sienna was breathing like the cute babies you see on night-time nappy adverts.
It costs just shy of £10 but it’s worth every penny. We got it on Saturday, I am writing this on Monday, and we have used it several times in between.
And because Si-si is sleeping better, we’re all sleeping better too.
Today, if you ask me where I see myself in 5 years’ time, I probably still couldn’t say. You can’t predict what’ll happen to you when you have a baby.
What I do know is it will involve me trying to persuade my then 8- and 5-year-old to suck out the badness of their child cold using my favourite trick.
Or I’ll be drinking thickshakes in a really novel way.