After having 7 children you would think that I would have the problem of taking toddlers into the bathroom down to a science. But we are talking about toddlers and they have never been known to be particularly great about being consistent with anything, much less bathroom etiquette.
Today I went grocery shopping with #7. Who had to go #2. Of course before embarking on said trip I asked #7 repeatedly if he had to go potty. Nope, not gonna happen. Exactly 2 minutes into our grocery store expedition he pipes up from the backseat: “Mom, I have to poop.” Of course you do.
After assuring me that he could hold it until we got to the store he proceeded to talk about poop: how it smells, how it looks, how big his poop is going to be. You know, the usual stimulating conversations you have with a 3 ½ year old. He did hold it until we crossed over the threshold of the stores entrance. Than it was a race to the bathroom.
Now, I have no problem taking #7 (who is a boy) into the women’s room with me. #7 has recently developed a problem with me taking him into the women’s restroom. He thinks that he should only go into the men’s restroom. This is an issue. I have seen #7 in his natural environment in the bathroom. It involves a lot of running water, throwing toilet paper everyplace but in the toilet, and getting into everything that he can. In the bathroom. Not to mention the glaringly obvious point of that he is too young to go into a public bathroom unattended. This particular grocery store does not have a family restroom so he was ushered, yelling and squalling, into the women’s bathroom.
Thank god it was empty so he was unceremoniously led into a stall and told to poop. He got as far as pulling down his underpants when he decided that he wanted to go into a different stall. I convinced him that the stall he was in was the BEST stall in the whole bathroom. He grudgingly agreed to give it a go. He kept up a constant litany of how he was pushing really hard, the poop wasn’t coming out, how bad the bathroom smelled, and why Chase from Paw Patrol is his favorite. I’m tapping my foot and begging him to hurry up. Mommy suddenly has to go to.
Then someone walks in. That poor lady had no idea what she had walked into. #7 immediately seizing up on the idea of an audience goes full bore into inappropriate conversation. He talks about his poop being pretty, he tells me that his balls are huge, he starts to tell the story of when he peed on the cat and then decides to talk to the lady in the stall next to us.
#7 asks her if she is okay “Hey lady, are you okay?” The lady does not answer. #7 gets louder. “Hey lady, are you pooping too?” Still no answer from the neighboring stall as I am trying furiously to get #7 to quiet down and just finish. “Mom, that lady is pooping. It stinks. Mommy, that lady is being rude!”
Finally, #7 is blessedly done. I wipe him, let him flush, and help him with his pants even though he “can do it.” Now its mommy’s turn and after #7 promises to stand still and wait until mommy is done, #7 lies. He flings open the stall door as I am mid-squat and yells, “hurry Mommy, it smells really bad in here.” Our neighboring bathroom guest is washing her hands and trying her best to ignore us. Great.
So, here I am, embarrassed, rushed and wishing to hell that I had made #7 go before we left. And how has your day been?