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Baby Balls
by Kara Carlson

After au pairing for five children in New Zealand over the last few months, my knowledge of babies and children has mushroomed. I now know shit. Intimately. I know nappies, feeding child mobs, locating unwanted bunnies, and all about little penises. My brother lectured me that I couldn't tell the three-year-old not to play with himself, as he would have psychological masturbation issues when older. My mom told me to entice little kids to bathe by creating bubble baths. I am now a bubble bath lord.

Tonight, after the bubble bath that three of the children resolved to get into together, the bathroom floor was an inch deep in water and three inches deep in bubbles. The mom observed the explosion and asked me to bathe the baby and then get him ready for bed while she and her husband read the kids stories.

The bathtub edge is three feet too high to comfortably kneel on the floor and cup the baby's head in my hand above the water. The tub rim attacks my armpits like rabid Indian monkeys and, after previously bathing the baby for two nights, my back felt as if a raging elephant had trampled it. After each bath, I shuffled around for three days knowing I required an old-people walker.

When the baby lays down splashing in the tub, I torture my back to hold the baby's head. Tonight's solution: I sat him up in the water and sat myself on a child footstool by the side of the bathtub. As I turned and cracked my back, the mom entered with the three-year-old to brush his teeth. She screamed. The baby has only been able to sit up without assistance for six days. At the mom's request, I leaned him back. He pissed in the bath water. 

I soaped him in the urine-water and then carried him in a towel to the changing table in his bedroom. His balls aren't as giant as they have been in the past, but they do get violently red. The mom clubbed her head into the room to remind me to put Vicks Vaporub on the baby's chest, as he had a cough, and Sudocrem on his balls, for the redness. The mom left and the baby started to roll over. I seized a jar of cream and smeared it across his sack. He screamed like he had been dropped on his head. I had switched the Sudocrem and Vicks. I had coated the baby's testicles in Vicks. The vaporub smells like Icy Hot.