ashamed to admit that I consider myself to be a pretty awesome mom. As a single
parent by choice, I solely take on the parenting duties most people have a
partner to share with. I’m the only one who got up during my daughter’s
sleepless infant nights, the only one who has snuggled her on those inevitable
sick days, and the only one dealing with her tantrums now that she is entering
the toddler stage. And you know what? I do a pretty phenomenal job with all of
it. My kid is happy and healthy and so completely and totally spectacular in
every single way. I would like to think I’ve had a little something to do with
But if there
is one area I still struggle with, maybe even more so now that my daughter is
older, it’s the poop.
probably admit that I have always been a bit adverse to poop anyway. I never
wanted a dog of my own, because the idea of picking up animal feces horrified
me. When I was pursuing IVF and hoping for a pregnancy, the scariest part of
labor to me was the potential of pooping on the table in front of a room of
people. And once my daughter arrived, those dirty diapers became (and remain)
my least favorite part of parenting.
But at least
when that poop is in the diaper, I know what to expect. I had changed plenty of
diapers in my life before, and I’m perfectly capable of changing hers as well. (Even as I
not-so-secretly pine for the day when she is miraculously potty trained and
those diapers become a thing of our past.)
What I hadn’t
been prepared for, however, was what would happen when that poop found its way
outside the diaper.
No one warns
you about this. No one tells you that your kid may one day decide to use her
poop as war paint or that daycare might begin insisting you put pants under her
dresses because she’s been caught one too many times “digging for nuggets — and
trying to eat them.” Not that my kid’s ever done that. No, not my sweet little princess. (Or if she
has, I’m certainly not admitting it publicly.)
But do you
know what my kid has done? What I had
never in a million years prepared myself for her to do? Pooped in the
We can keep those diapers on for as long as she needs. I would just appreciate it if she would actually use them, rather than finding creative ways to dispose of her poo.
occasions now there have been little floaters in the water – self-made boats that I have to
scoop out by hand. Yes, it's disturbing and
gross on every single level.
reason, it never occurred to me that pooping in the tub might be something we
had to worry about as parents. It wasn’t until my daughter was about 2 months
old and a friend’s son dropped a duce in his own tub that I realized ... that
could happen to us. And I began to
fear it with every ounce of my being (particularly
because I often bathe with my daughter, and I just knew I was not up for
getting shat on in the tub).
So of course,
it had to happen. No, not on me. But
still, when my daughter was about 8 months old, she clouded up those tub waters
for the very first time. Thankfully, we were actually traveling and staying at
a hotel — so I didn’t have to contemplate burning my house down in response
(because who wants to bathe in a tub someone has pooped in?) And since my dad
was with us, I was able to con him into dealing with it (while I rocked back
and forth in a corner, trying to pretend it hadn’t happened at all).
I thought I
was at least in the clear. She had done it now, I had paid my dues. Surely it
would never happen again, right? Oh how naïve I
later, she dropped another turd in the tub. This time, I was the one who had to
clean up, bleaching her bath toys in the process. And again I
thought, “It’s done. That milestone is over. I’ll never have to deal with that
I’m an idiot.
Twice in the
last week, my now 17-month-old daughter has stood up in the tub, looked me in
the eye and dropped a few floaters behind her. Both times now, I have somehow
developed the nerve to quickly scoop them out with my bare hands, drain the
water and shower her off without completely freaking out.
So at least there has been progress in dealing with my phobia.
But the fact
that she is doing this now, when she has otherwise been developing an interest
in using the potty, is not lost on me. I swear this
kid is just doing her best to make it clear to mommy that the end of diapers is
not yet in sight. She poops in the tub as an act of rebellion, rather than one
borne of necessity. You
know, whatever. I’m not in a rush. We can keep those diapers on for as long as
she needs. I would just appreciate it if she would actually use them, rather
than finding creative ways to dispose of her poo.
me about this. I wasn’t prepared for poop in the tub. Or her hands. Or her
mouth. (Again, not
that she’s ever done that.)
that my warning to all you new parents now: No matter what you may think,
diapers aren’t the only place your kid will find to poop. And if you’re getting
in the tub with them, just know that you are bathing at your own risk.
never know when that kid of yours will decide that the one thing that bath
needs is a new boat.
And you don’t
want to be under their little bums when they decide to drop that floater.