August 28, 2014 by Melanie L.
Trigger warning: explicit sh!t.
Even in ideal circumstances dating is awkward. Dating experts advise daters to, “Just be yourself.” That’s nice except that what makes me me is that I’m an actual human: the kind who uses the commode. Yet, knowing this information is not likely to stoke my suitor’s passion and is therefore contraindicated while dating. So I just pretend I’m not human, or at least that I’m not a slave to human biology. I keep that sh!t to myself. Because, obviously.
Throw my children into the dating mix and sh!t can get downright humiliating. As the fruit of my loins, their bodily functions proves my humanity. Unfortunately, I was outed as human earlier this summer.
Here’s how the sh!t went down. One gorgeous Saturday, my boyfriend, Jason, invited me and my children to spend the afternoon at his swim club. I packed a light bag and jaunted off to introduce my children to Jason’s extended family, all of whom were members of the swim club.
My children and I spent the first three hours alternating between splashing in the pool and taking pee breaks. Of course, my kids couldn’t synchronize their bladders. So, Jason stayed poolside with the non-peeing kid each time. I’m pretty sure I spent more time escorting a child to and from the restroom than I did in the actual pool.
As the afternoon wore on, I baited my prune-puckered children out of the pool with food. Monkey, 5, inhaled his snacks, the first food he’d had since we left home, and raced off to the playground. Jason decided to dry off on the volleyball court. His brother declined to play. Shortly thereafter, my daughter begged to go back to the pool. I saw no reason why not despite some unidentifiable objection protesting at the deep edges of my consciousness. I was having such a good time on this date, I didn’t want to think about anything that might ruin it. I asked Jason’s brother to let Monkey know where I was should he come looking for me.
In short order, I glimpsed Jason’s brother escorting Monk by the hand. At first, I assumed they were walking toward me in the pool, but as soon as they were within ten feet, Monkey waved and they made a sharp left. Jason’s brother gestured toward the restroom.
Suddenly, the scene of the two of them walking hand-in-hand did something weird: it accelerated briefly then halted. A symptom, maybe, that my brain skipped a neural connection and then raced to catch up. Memories appeared as flashcards in my mind’s eye: my son wincing and gripping his abdomen several different times over the last two weeks, my iPhone as I consulted the pediatrician, the medication aisle at Walgreens, the bottle of laxative I purchased there, the spinning vortex of orange juice in which I had plunked Monkey’s first dose. Just. That. Morning.
My vision sped by back up, as my face reddened and my heart quickened. I heard Bernard Herrmann’s “The Murder” play in my mind’s ear as it dawned on me what Monkey was about to do . . . and to whom.
I meant to call out and offer to switch places with Jason’s brother, but my voice croaked. I started preparing for the inevitable shame. I hope Monkey doesn’t pretend he can’t wipe, I thought, terrified.
Except he did.
Well, at least he didn’t sh!t in the pool!
Want more sh!t?
Toilet-tasking by Fighting Off Frumpy
Sh*t Happens by Priscilla Queen of the Desert
Crap! A Cautionary Tale by Abandoning Pretense Guest Writing on In The Powder Room.