Motherhood. The end of Dignity. Part I.

by Janelle Hanchett

Lemme tell ya a little story.

Last night Rocket and Georgia needed a bath. This happens often. I started the bath water. Rocket got in, too soon, like he always does. Then, as always, he complained with shock, horror and sadness that the water was only warm in half the tub (by the faucet). And I, like I always do, suggest he sit by the faucet until the whole thing warms up. I got Georgia undressed on the changing table, then realized that I was still in my work clothes and was really uncomfortable, mainly because I was still wearing a bra, which is, as far as I can tell, totally inappropriate while in one’s home. So I went into my room, setting Georgia on the floor naked.

As I did this I had a flashing, ominous thought “she could pee on the floor.” I did a quick risk/benefit analysis and decided it was worth it – I would just get dressed REALLY FAST and if she peed, I’d spray it with something and have Mac deal with it. Since he wasn’t home I could play the “you weren’t here dealing with these hoodlum children so now you must help” card.

I sat her down. I undressed. I grabbed a skirt and a shirt and threw them on. I couldn’t find a clean shirt in my drawer, so I grabbed one from the pile on the floor, which is comprised of maternity clothing I have not yet put in the garage. Yeah. This is my life.

I return to the baby. Not more than 2 minutes have passed since I deposited her there, sitting up happily and saying “Bah.”

I notice something odd on the ground beneath her. I realize what it is. The words “No fucking way” escape my mouth.

The kid has pooped on the floor.

And I want somebody else’s life. Is that too much to ask? Just right now. Just for the next 5 minutes.

But I know this isn’t Inception. It isn’t my dream or anybody else’s and in a horrible twist of fate, I’m the only person here to deal with this.

Now I enjoy bathroom humor as much as the next guy, but I’m going to save you the details of this particular bowel movement except to say that it was well, not solid. Therefore, it was everywhere.

In moments like this, the body enters a sort of flight-or-fight response. Time slows down. Adrenalin pulses. The mind starts ticking methodically…focus on the basics, on survival…

My objective: remove baby from floor, wash her. Preferably without covering myself in poop.

I assess my options.

If I put her in the tub, the tub will be full of poop. Not doing that.

If I wipe it off her, well, that’s impossible. This is going to require water.

None of my options look promising, but I’m running out of time. Any second one of those erratic bouncing hands is going to reach down and grab that stuff.

Must act now.

So I pick her up under the arms and hold her out in front of me, hoping none falls off and begging the higher powers that she doesn’t have it on her hands, which are, of course, grabbing for my face. I dart to the bathroom sink and place her there, at which time Rocket demands to know what’s going on. I tell him. He yells “Let me see!!” and starts exiting the bath to get a better look. I scream something imperceptible but oddly effective, since he sat back down and just began requesting details.

I turn the water on. It’s cold. Of course it’s cold. Damn faucet. Cold running water has now messed with my life twice in 10 minutes. Georgia starts crying. She doesn’t like cold water. Rocket tries again. I yell. I wash the baby. I wash the baby. I wash the baby. I’m tapping the hot side of the faucet with my finger trying to warm the water up without burning her and she’s slipping around like a small seal doused in olive oil and Rocket’s nearly in tears because he doesn’t get to see the poop and this is my life. It occurs to me that moments like this would serve as extremely effective birth control.

Finally, she’s rinsed.

And with a sigh of relief I set her in her seat in the bath by Rocket. But by now the water is practically to Georgia’s neck so I do the “hold slippery seal” routine again and punch the button to drain some of the water out. Rocket is now in hysterics because he sees something on my chest that’s funny. I don’t care though. I ignore him.

But then I smell something uncool. I look down. There’s poop all over my shirt. And since it’s a maternity shirt and therefore HUGE, the v-neck is hanging really low, allowing poop to also move down my chest and between my boobs.

Rocket is having the best night of his life, viewing two of his all time favorite things at the same time: boobs and poop.

I rip the shirt off and throw it in the garbage. Yes, the garbage.

Then I bathe my baby and wash myself and decide next time I’m staying in my damn work clothes.

And I realize that I’m going to write a blog post about baby poop and its role in my life, even though I swore I was way too deep and profound and intellectual for that kind of, um, shit. Ha.Ha.Ha.

after the bath. sweet smelling clean kids. totally worth it. well mostly worth it.

9 Comments | Posted in motherhood. the end of dignity. | April 7, 2011
  • Amber

    I am laughing so hard I’m gasping for air here! But I do have one question… I really can’t get it out of my head so please, please help me out here… what about the floor?? Did you get the poop up?

    • renegademama

      Well, yes. But it took awhile. I didn’t include this info b/c I figured people would be so worn out from the morass of poop talk they’d prefer not hearing about the floor as well. But since you asked :), I first wiped it off with toilet paper (in between gagging, while fending off the 5-year old who really really wanted to “help”), then I flushed that down the toilet. This got rid of the bulk of it, but of course the grabbing it with toilet paper also rubbed it way down deep into the carpet, so I sprayed it approximately 19,000 times with good-smelling stain-removal stuff, scrubbed it for a moment, then, realizing this was a much bigger task than formerly thought, I abandoned the whole project, leaving it for the husband and taking pictures with my kids with my phone. It’s now a pale yellow spot on the floor. It will probably remain that way for 2 or more years. Good times.

  • Kimberly

    I wish I could say that this type of situation has never happened to me. But. The number of times I’ve been shit on is just ridiculous. Oh, the glamour…

  • Julie

    I have at least three blog posts about poop that I’ve written and just saved without publishing. It is amazing how much of our lives revolve around poop. Add in a couple of pets, and well, shit happens.

  • eringirl

    “If I wipe it off her, well, that’s impossible. This is going to require water.” LOL. I love this blog post. LOVE.

    Sometimes the deep and profound are MORE deep and profound when punctuated by the occasional poop story. Just my opinion.

    Thank you for your blog. I love it.

  • Michelle

    I agree…sad fact that motherhood is punctuated with poop. 🙂 Great post!

  • Christina

    You are not kidding that if people understood the amount of shit that you get delt when you have children they might reconsider. Absolutely, birth control at its best.

  • Rebekah C

    I’m laughing my arse off over here. Poop definitely has a very clearly defined role in our lives these days. Ugh.

  • Shan

    Craptacular! At least you got your bra off. As I read that, I realized I’m still wearing mine. Fynn’s asleep, but maintaining her death grip on my nipple. Argh!