We don’t talk about poop any more frequently than we did pre-child. And we definitely talk about poop a lot now that there is significantly more of it in our life.
I didn’t give The Girl a bath last night because she’d been sleeping like an anvil since one o’clock, and making small poops throughout this epic snooze. No problem, I thought. I’ll just give her a bath first thing in the morning before taking her to Grandma’s house.
She had a mess of poop upon waking. Then, as she cooed and squealed on the changing table, she pooped ON the changing table, into my hand. I am fairly certain there is a reflex which causes humans to not allow feces to flow unrestrained into the open. Or perhaps I’m telling myself that because I naively placed my hand under The Girl’s erupting butthole as it vacated, without really understanding why. She giggled and grabbed her toesies.
I plunked her in the bath. At first she was confused because baths are typically a nighttime endeavor. How novel! said her wide-eyed expression. (She is easily thrilled, just like her mom. That’s why she has rags for toys and chats with the ceiling.) Three or four ah-goos in and she fart-pooped right in the bath water. I knew this day would come. I’ve feared it since her birth, suspecting it would most certainly happen, because virtually any ridiculous thing you can imagine happening with a child will inevitably materialize. Also, I suspected it was coming because last week a mom blogger I follow on social media posted a mommy meme in which the speaker muses, “They should teach you practical things about motherhood, like what to do when there is poop in the bathtub.” Upon reading it I felt my spidey sense tingle and I knew right then it was a runaway poop train. I bet The Girl’s bowels started prepping at that very moment.
Even though I was fully expecting poop in the bath it still came as a surprise. It’s probably because when you see something like that for the first time it is both horrifying and remarkable, despite seeing it four thousand times in your nightmares.
The quiet events of the morning were quickly unraveling into something much more complex. The situation suddenly became rather logistically confusing, and I had many questions. She is now soaking in poop water, so the logical action is to bathe the baby. But where do I bathe her, as she is already in the tub? Is it okay to place her *gently* on the bathroom floor while I empty the poop water? How thoroughly do I need to clean the tub, if it will soon be filled with more clean water and soap? Is it really that bad if there is a little bit of poop in her bath water? Will she die if she accidentally eats her own poop? Is this a typhoid situation?
Fortunately I have some mom instincts (my kid is still alive, so that’s gotta mean something) and I did everything that needed to be done without falling too hard into paralysis. I don’t remember exactly what transpired, as everything went white and all the sounds became distant echoes, but The Girl ended up clean, did not eat her own poop, and the tub that her tub sits inside was covered in little poop pieces which I left for myself to clean up later, hopefully before Husband needed to take a shower. He doesn’t see very well, and could easily overlook the catastrophe of stepping into a shower strewn with fecal bits. I thought about leaving him a note. Then I forgot.
I dressed The Girl in something adorable (cue onslaught of existential queries: Does she only have adorable clothing? Or is all of her clothing adorable because she is the one wearing it? If I put her in something not adorable, does my perception actually change or is it like “beer goggles,” but “baby goggles?”) and placed her in the car seat. She smiled at me with that giant, squinty-eyed shit-eatin’ gummy grin she gives me when I perform my Broadway rendition of Iz’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” in the kitchen, using a wooden spoon as my microphone.
I clicked her carrier into the car seat base. She gazed at me lovingly, almost like she knows me. Like, really knows me. I was swiftly lured in by my sweet baby’s newfound flirting skills, wondering if they really had arrived overnight, when I heard another wet fart and inhaled a whiff of warm, sour air into my mouth. Another poop. Maybe I’ll leave this one for Grandma.