Monday, September 13, 2010

the answer is yes

Usually the first thing I do when I get a break from my kids is to read blogs by other people about their kids. So the irony of taking Auden and Isla to a babysitter so that I can write about them is not lost on me. But if I don't do it now, you will not hear from me until they are away at college. And by then, this story probably won't be as funny:

Isla has been the kind of baby who can go days without pooping. When she finally goes, it's... dramatic. A friend once told me about a diaper blow-out that was so bad that she cut her son's clothes off of him. Now, I'm too much of a frugal mofo to just waste a onesie like that, but I have spent precious after-explosion seconds contemplating that option. Because how -- where...? this...? this MUCH? in the HAIR...? -- do I even begin to clean it up?

So, because there is no comic justice (until later, just WAIT), Auden has been having poop issues of his own since we moved. He's pretty regular, but he just forgets to tell me that he has to go. Consequently there have been altogether too many poopy-pants episodes lately. The good news is that he's responding favorably to bribery, so I think we're on the up & up.

But on this fateful day, when I decided to go to the zoo, with both children, BY MYSELF, there was no way to know what a perfect storm I'd created.

This was back when I was too proud to admit I needed a double stroller, so I had Isla in the bjorn, and Auden in an umbrella stroller, and for a while everything was dandy. We spent ages in the pen with the pygmy goats: Auden heaping hay into their food dishes, and Isla grabbing their rough fur in both hands and screeching with delight. Then I had to go to the bathroom, and I figured Auden did too.

And as I packed us up, I realized Isla had issued her weekly address.

Into the narrow bathroom we went, and lo, out sprouted two extra pairs of arms so that I could wrangle Auden as I wiped Isla's every crevice and executed a complete wardrobe change. I had to put her in Auden's stroller as I tended to him, though, where she let me know in no uncertain terms just how hungry she was, now that she had all that extra room in her guts.

These potty breaks always take fourteen times as long as you think they will, and you become that mom in the bathroom saying things like, No don't put your hands there! Or THERE. Don't pull on that! Don't aim your penis there! Or THERE. GAH.

To my own credit, though, there was a mom in the next stall over who was losing it way worse than me, cursing at her son NOT TO TAKE OFF ALL HIS CLOTHES, JESUS CHRIST ALREADY. So I felt like I was doing pretty good, even with Isla bawling in the stroller and Auden leaning over me to flush while his pants were still around his ankles.

By the time we got out of there, I had broken a sweat.

We stopped in a shady spot that was partially fenced in, so I could feed Isla and keep an eye on Auden. I gave him his sippy-cup and hoped he'd be entertained by a wheel-chair ramp and a couple of stairs until I could finish nursing. And he was, until he stopped and got that far-away look in his eye. You know that look. It means, I have to concentrate on this. It means, this is happening now and I cannot stop it.

"Are you pooping?!" I yelled. Even though it was obvious enough.

"Godddfrrrhhjgpphhhmmmppzzzztttttt," I muttered, not swearing.

I plopped Isla back in the stroller, much to her chagrin, aaaand back to the bathroom we went, to clean poop out of pants. Yet again.

When it was all over, and we emerged twice cleansed, and I was resuming my station at (er, AS) the milk bar, I saw a young girl walk by wearing a bright pink shirt with that loathsome and overused "Got Milk?" font on the front, only her shirt said:

Got Poop?

And I kind of couldn't believe it. Because who would wear a shirt that says that? And how could her timing be any more perfect? And how could god be so cruel as to mock me after that epic shit-storm? I was actually annoyed. I took offense.

YES. YES, I GOT POOP. Are you happy?

And there was comic justice for all.