Every once in a while, being a pediatrician mom comes in handy. I’m not talking about those times when the other mothers are worried about the sugar content of infant formula, and you’re like puleeze, forget sugar! I’m more worried about neuroblastoma, histiocytosis X, and rheumatoid arthritis! My pediatric background ratchets up the worry meter by a thousand fold. Those times it isn’t handy to be a pediatrician. It’s freaking terrifying.
No, I’m talking about the rare time when you actually remember something from your little kid medicine training that helps your child get better, for real. That’s what happened this weekend.
The diarrhea started at the end of last week. It wasn’t horrific. There was no fever, vomiting or blood in the stools, so I wasn’t freaked out or anything. I did the usual BRAT diet minus the R and T and continued to feed through. So the diarrhea was pretty manageable despite several diaper blowouts. What was not manageable was the diaper rash.
We’ve been pretty darn lucky that we’ve never had to deal with a bad diaper rash. During my training, I saw so many kids with excoriated bottoms that I was counting the days until Zara had one that got superinfected with fungus displaying those lovely satellite lesions. But lucky for us, this never happened.
After the development of the shits, as I like to call it, Zizi’s bottom became redder than a radish. I used Desitin, Aveeno diaper ointment, and even the Whole Foods approved Weleda diaper ointment. Nothing helped. And she screamed bloody murder every time we had to change her.
Finally by Sunday when her skin was starting to break down, I started to get a little stressed. And that stress managed to cause one of my long buried synapses to fire. A memory returned. What about butt paste? I thought. Yeah, that might work.
Now I’m not talking about the Boudreaux Butt Paste. I’m talking about the Butt Paste remedy passed down through generations of pediatric residents. I’m talking about the good stuff.
Every pediatric facility or ward has their own way of making Butt Paste. Ours consisted of the following:
- 2 oz A & D ointment
- 2 oz zinc oxide ointment
- 1 oz Maalox or Mylanta
- 1 oz bacitracin
This is the real Butt Paste!
I hightailed it to RiteAid and got my supplies. I stopped at the pharmacy and asked for a screw top jar for me to mix and store my concoction. When I spoke to the pharmacist, he tried to convince me to get the Butt Paste on the shelf, but no. I knew that the antacid was the special ingredient to soothe the pain. I was going to make the good stuff.
AdoringHusband watched my chemistry project as I worked. “Why doesn’t this come premade?” he asked.
“No idea,” I shrugged.
“Well if it works so well, someone should make it”
“Yeah, you’re right,” I replied and kept mixing.
I got just the right consistency to make me happy. So we gave it a go. We soaked Zizi’s butt in a warm bath with baking soda and then gently dried her off. Next (it was like a surgical procedure) we returned to the changing table (the place of howls) and got set up for the application. AdoringHusband was on distraction and I was on application. I touched the mixture to her skin and waited for the shrieks. Nothing. AdoringHusband and I looked at each other quizzically. Zara was playing with her feet, unfazed. I finished my application without incident.
Later in the evening, we did the same thing again. This time, some of the broken down areas of skin that weren’t holding the mixture very well had improved. She was starting to heal. And this morning? She was 80% better. AdoringHusband became a disciple of the real Butt Paste.
He’s already trying to come up with a business plan to sell Dr. Mommy’s Magic Butt Paste. He’s created a jingle that he spent the morning singing to Zara. Zara’s face will be on the jar. “Who will be able to resist?” he asked happily.
All I can say is that sometimes a little pediatrics comes in right handy. Mommy made it better. 😎