I thought about the name for this post before I actually knew what Water Therapy was. I went to my favourite site of all sites – Wikipedia – and searched for it and kinda freaked myself out. I had heard of water intoxicification and wondered if it was possible to get drunk on water, but I didn’t know that people could die from it. That is not the message I wanted to convey with this post.
What I wanted to say with this post is that I had a very bad day. A very bad day. A long day. I was at work for twelve and a half hours and probably could have worked a few more, but I wanted to get home.
My daughter tried to get my attention, showing me what she was doing in Nanny’s garden this afternoon, but I was to distracted by what was going on in my head. She even – with the guidance of Mommy – went into the fridge and got me my dinner (macaroni and cheese with cut up hot dogs ; I’m a simple man), handed me the ketchup, and then handed me a beer. I followed her up the stairs and ate in front of the television watching Jeapordy while she ran all around the room, climbing all over the couch, trying to do headstands, trying to tackle Mommy and Daddy.
Dinner was done and I got Final Jeapordy wrong. I said Whitman ; but Leaves of Grass didn’t have essays, it was poetry. I should have known it was Henry David Thoreau, but it has been so long since I read either, Walt Whitman was the first that came to me because he was the hero of Robin Williams’s character John Keating in Dead Poet’s Society, who inspired Ethan Hawke – Todd Anderson – to come up with the excellent line of ‘sweaty toothed madman’ for a picture of Walt Whitman. And the reason I was thinking of Dead Poet’s Society is because of Robert Sean Leonard, who plays Wilson in my favourite television show, House, which was on at nine tonight and it was a new episode. I wanted to see it because of the character that was being diagnosed was Smith from Sex in The City. Samantha’s boy toy. I only watch good television, and frankly, since they took Star Trek:Enterprise off the air, there isn’t much to watch. I have been guilty of rewatching it from the first episode to the the last every few weeks or so. My daughter smiles and dances to the excellent 80’s theme song (the same song, you would be interested to know, that Dirk Diggler tries to record after he leaves the porn industry in the fine, fine cinematic classic, Boogie Nights). Anyway, the reason I got Final Jeapordy wrong is because I was preoccupied.
Then, my daughter reminded me. “Bubbath?” she asked. “Bubbath?”
“Yes, honey,” I replied. “Bubble bath.”
And she chased me to the stairs and I carried her to the bathroom and let her watch while I filled the tub with water and used exactly 3 capfulls of bubble bath to get those bubbles started. I thought about taking her to her change table to take off her Onesie and her diaper, but elected to change her in the bathroom instead, wrestling with her while she laughed. My wife gathered up the Onesie and the diaper and left the bathroom for me to give her a bath.
“Daddy bath?” she asked. “Daddy?”
“No, Honey,” I answered. “Not right now.” I haven’t ever bathed with her and I have no intention of doing so.
But I brushed her teeth in the bath (can’t really keep her still anywhere else), and I cleaned her ears, and washed her with lavender bath soap, then I wetted her hair and washed it. The whole process was straightforward and rather mechanical, I washed her while she played while I went over in my head what it was that happened to make my day at work so very, very hard.
She grabbed her squirt bottle, one of her bath toys, one that we got for free from somewhere, while she disregarded the two dozen other mutlicoloured toys thay we paid for, and tried to squeeze with all her might to squirt her daddy. There wasn’t enough water so Daddy filled it. She tried to squirt me but I held up my hand so I wouldn’t get wet, but she kept on trying and laughing.
That is when I stopped and smiled at her. I then leaned over, refilled up her water bottle, and let her go to it. She squirted me in the face, my hair, my shoulders. She even stood up in the bath to make sure that I got the hair on the back of my neck wet. I then sprayed her. Then she sprayed me. And we both laughed. She started to kick in the bath and throw up all kinds of water. Not wanting to be shown up my an eighteen month old, I showed her what for and tossed water all over the bathtub. All over her, all over me. Splashing and making waves while she fell over laughing. I picked her up and splashed some more. The water was starting to get cold, so I started to pack away the bath toys, telling her to pull the plug (‘Tug The Gator, actually. Her bath plus is a little green alligator). She splashed and splashed until the last of the water went away. There were some bubble left over, so she played with those. She turned back around and stared at the drain.
“Awgun?” she asked
“Yup,” I answered. “All gone. Ready to rock and roll?”
“Wockinwoll,” she smiled and held up her arms. “Up?”
I wrapped her in her pink terry cloth towel with the little hood, let her laugh at her wet, curly hair in the mirror (and her hair is curly after the bath ; I like to make it into a curly mohawk and get it to dry that way so she has a curly mohawk all the next day), and then took her to her bedroom to get changed into her peejays. She wore her two piece white ones with the little, pink piggies on them the night before, but they weren’t that dirty and she looked so cute in them that I wanted to put her in them again.
“Hans?” She asked. “Hans?”
“Yes, honey,” I said. “I’ll put your lotion on.” Which is a lavender lotion that I rub on her back and her chest and her neck and arms. I put some on the palms of her two hands and she rubs them into her chubby little legs.
“Lubooo,” she said when she was done. “Lubooo.”
“Love you too, honey, ” I said. “Give Daddy a kiss.”
“Lubooo,” she said and puckered up to give me a kiss.
Mommy came in not long after and wondered what all the noise was about. I had no idea what she was asking. Same thing about the bad day at work. She asked me if I wanted to talk about it, to make sure that I was okay. Our conversation late in the afternoon had not been a good one or a long one and I think she was kind of worried. I hadn’t had a bad day at all, I told my wife with a smile. As a matter of fact, it had shaped out to be pretty cool.
And that, my friends, is Water Therapy