Not all bathrooms are created equal.
My bathroom at Helen Mayo is certainly not equal to my bathroom at home.
Before I go on I must explain a few things: I seem to have won the perinatal mental health lottery and have been diagnosed with postnatal psychosis (Puerperal Psychosis for all you old school peeps out there). And so nursling 2 and I have been staying at Helen Mayo house (a mother-baby mental health unit) for the last few weeks.
Thank you to all the wonderful staff at Helen Mayo who are helping me to to plant my feet firmly on the road to recovery. Any apparent criticism is meant in a completely jocular way. In fact I am very grateful for the unit and all the staff!
Now, back to bathrooms…
In the bathroom stakes there are some things that definitely help a bathroom rank higher than others. An actual bath is very high up on the list of desirable characteristics, for example. But in the absence of an actual bath, a shower screen, or even just a shower curtains is pretty high up there too. This is something that Helen Mayo House’s bathrooms lack. The ability to shower in privacy is also quite high up there, but in here nurses can swipe themselves in to the room at any time if they have too (although a shut bathroom door and shower noises seems to be pretty well respected…) and there is an intercom so nurses can hear baby cries from their office and come running.
This is a typical shower here:
- Prior to shower make very sure that everything you need is in fact in the bathroom (especially a towel and clothes!!)
- Shut the door
- Turn shower on. Try to adjust pressure but finally grudgingly accept fire-hose grade pressure because it’s either that or none.
- Step into the not quite warm enough stream of water.
- Watch the puddle of water spread most the way along the bathroom floor (no curtains or screen remember!)
- Listen carefully for baby squeaks and door clicks whilst soaping and shampooing considerably faster than normal pace. Hopefully you’ll hear neither. If baby does happen to squeak finish off quickly and attend to baby to prevent the nurse from coming in before you’re dressed.
- Make sure to open the bathroom door before using any spray deodorant or hair driers or you might score a visit from the fire-fighters.
- Breathe a sigh of relief that you managed a shower without anyone inadvertently seeing you naked.
That being said, there are 2 big advantages to showering here:
- Not running out of hot water…ever!
- Only having to work showers around 1 nursling, not 2.
I do miss my shower at home!!
However, a shower is a shower, and oh how nice it is to be clean!