Unaware, she dances around the room, giggling and twirling, squealing in delight. Completely oblivious to the growing cushion in her pants. But I am not. Through the little pink pants, I see the sponge swelling from moisture upon moisture. I glance at the clock and know that it's time.
A soft pink hand, so fragile and delicate, full of little white bones that could be crushed with just slightly too much pressure, wraps around my thumb and we toddle together into the bedroom.
Although she is not fully aware of the meaning behind this activity, she knows that something is about to change. That she will receive a little more comfort.
She flops on the bed, content and watching, but yet still so adamant for independance that she helps remove the thin cloth shell that protects delicate skin beneath. Before I have the chance to unfasten the adhesive strips, she rips them away like band-aids. I slip the soiled diaper from under her bum and she laughs. Kicks at the new found freedom. With a warm damp cloth, I wipe away the tiny remnants that remain unabsorbed by the cotton shell. I dry the moisture, further cleaning her fragile skin.
Tiny red dots remain, a reminder of the invisible particles that manage to cling to her bottom. Despite every effort , I know I can never fully fix everything.
White cream, thick and soothing, is applied to her exposed parts, an attempt to further sooth any potential discomfort. But she kicks and rolls, resisting my tender touch.
We struggle, we laugh until the change is complete, then she rolls off the bed, feet firmly planted on the floor and then she races from the room, squealing in delight.
I stand alone in the middle of the room, holding a damp cloth in one hand and the weight of one little girl in the other. Completely aware that soon she will do this on her own.