It has taken me more than a week to write these words… sometimes your heart needs time to process before it can share. In my previous life I would never have imagined writing something about poop… but alas… here we are.
I’m listening to a book The Whole-Brain Child to better understand the interworkings of my children’s brains and the impacts of trauma. In one chapter it shares about a whole-brain strategy called “Name it to tame it – telling stories to calm big emotions”. One of the best ways to heal from a painful, disappointing or scary moment is to help retell the story of the experience.
My friends, it’s time for you to know what happened…
It was the second day of fall, a blistery 96 degrees on a Sunday afternoon. My soul was longing for cool weather but instead was sweating out of every pore of my body. We were at a dear friend’s birthday party and the girls were swimming to their heart’s desire when the unexpected happened.
I have this one little fish that for reasons unbeknownst to me, tends to swallow lots of water as she plays – despite my constant request to spit it out. She has no cares about the germs, bacteria or living creatures that may share the body of water from which she drinks. She laughs in the face of fear – I cannot scare her into not drinking the water.
Let me set the scene for a moment, I have no intentions of swimming this day. I am dressed in a linen off-the-shoulder sundress and dripping in miserable sweat hoping that I will cool off enough before we go out for a family dinner and fondue to celebrate Daniel’s birthday. Sipping on a cool glass of Pinot, I see the wiggle dance of my youngest fish as she announces she needs to go potty really bad! I jump into action, open the heavy bathroom door and close it behind her. It’s a matter of moments when I hear on the other side of the door “Mommy, I need you.”
The smell hits me in the face before my brain can catch up with my eyes. It’s a dark bathroom, with no windows, ventilation or even access to air. On the center of the floor is what I finally identified as a pile of pool water induced excrement. I can’t comprehend in the moment of sweat dripping, eyes burning, gag inducing hysteria how this pile ended up on this floor, until her sheepish little eyes look up at me and say, “I’m sorry mommy.”
:: remain calm. you are the adult here. do not breathe. do not shame. do not lose your $#*% ::
I see that as she attempted to pull down her swimsuit bottom, the proverbial “bottom fell out” and there was literally poop everywhere. I momentarily contemplated whether it was appropriate to burn this place down. Instead, I calmly stick my head out the door and invite Daniel to come assist me in parenting hell. We’re in this together buddy!
As he steps into the sauna of shishkabobs I quickly brief him on the situation which has hit him in the face. I am gagging, but he is strong. I attempt to remove the fully loaded swimsuit bottom from my tiny human, which then acts like a rubber band and flings said poop all over my bare legs, the potty and more on the floor.
Holy Spirit come quickly…
I have to put her on the toilet, because despite the evidence all over the bathroom, she wasn’t finished. I believe everything she had eaten in the last two weeks had waited for this moment in time. I wipe myself off enough to retrieve clorox wipes from the closet, return to the chamber of torture and begin trying to scrub a pebbled floor with a handy wipe. I clean the toilet and all the things that have been desecrated. Wipe my own body with clorox wipes, pray to Jesus and thank God for the husband he gave me.
That cute heart trimmed, two piece swimsuit was abandoned. There’s no way in hell we are trying to recover its dignity.
Sweet Daniel goes to the car and grabs the tiny bottle of thieves hand sanitizer and we bathe ourselves in it. There are not enough essential oils in the world to aid in this recovery process.
However, we dress the tiny princess in her normal clothes and we exit the gates of hell hoping no one else needs to enter for a good 20 minutes or so. We rejoin the party just as he is blowing out his candles and my sweet little fish is handed none less than a chocolate cupcake…. y’all I couldn’t even handle the look of that things. I will never ever see chocolate cupcakes the same.
The twins were utterly devastated as we left and they found out we were not having our fun family dinner and fondue outing as previously planned. They were spared the bathroom experience and couldn’t understand why mommy and daddy looked like we just returned from the makings of a horror movie.
Sweet girls, there are just some things we cannot speak of. Trust me when I say we cannot go to dinner tonight.
Straight home. Hot showers. All the oils. More wine, please.
This morning, on my facebook feed a memory pops up from four years ago. I’m quickly reminded of the dazed and confused feeling I felt as I faced this new season with my first baby. She moved in with us October 2, 2014 – and here we are – 4 years later. I never could have imagined all our adventure would hold. I had no idea how to raise children, much less a baby. Despite my explosive poop stories, God has been oh so faithful.
We all know how the story goes, I’m living the life I never dreamed of. I can laugh at the shock I experienced four years ago as I became a mother to three little girls, all of whom we call our first child. It’s like we’re raising each other, they just had a head start – and we’re the adults because we have jobs and a background check.
I’m not entirely sure how to wrap up a poop story. I apologize to anyone who feels violated by my sharing. Trust me, you have the good side of the experience. I promise to one day write something that has a bit more heart and a few less explatives. I’ve been a bit busy lately keeping tiny people alive. As they have begun urgently praying for a baby… I’ve been forced to make a new rule: no more humans or things that poop. I draw the line. I hope God is listening 😉
There is a lot going on in this mommy heart of mine. We could use some prayers for the coming weeks. If I find another minute, I’ll share more.
May your coffee be strong, your wine be smooth and the oils be healing.
Much love to you.