I hate it when Master 1 wipes his snot all over me. I hate it smeared on my clothes or on my neck when he snuggles into me. I hate seeing slimly trails dried and crackled on his cheeks where he has wiped it to the side or dried green lumps in his nostrils. I hate seeing it dribble over his top lip. And there is nothing worse than a snotty-nosed kid coming up for a kiss when you’re not ready for it! This is dry-retch material for me.
I don’t know exactly why snot is such an irritating part of parenting for me. In the past four years there have been many moments defined by excreted bodily fluids, accidents and weird stuff – none of mine but I had to deal with it. There have been black eyes, a febrile convulsion, septic toe, vomit, blood, phlegm, spit, poo (all varieties; pushed into toys, smeared on walls and eaten), toilet water swallowed, dead spiders eaten and numerous bouts of nits.
All this I have taken in my stride – it’s all part of being a mother; someone has to do it because the children cannot take care of themselves. However, snot is another matter altogether. I just cannot cope with it. If the family have a cold and runny noses are common-place I am armed with tissues everywhere – boxes in each room, in the car and stuffed down my bra. I also walk around the house with a damp face washer on my shoulder to readily catch any stray greenies before they venture too far down anyone’s face.
Apparently there is a name for my issues with snot: myxophobia. If the internet can be believed this is defined as a fear of slime or mucus. Regardless of the truth of this, I wouldn’t say I fear it, I just don’t like it. I know it’s a sign that the body is getting rid of gunk associated with infection but it makes me gag and it’s just plain gross.
A red and over-wiped nose can easily be soothed with bepanthen cream, and this is far better than sticky, slick snot any day.