Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Toilet Training for Parents

Back when I was an expert on parenting - before I gave birth to an actual child, naturally - I knew that there would be a few things I'd lose in those early days with a newborn - my waistline & will to live, for starters.

What has consistently surprised me, though - remember, this is someone who has always wanted kids without the benefit of ever having spent much time with them - is the re-learning of basic life skills I've had to do, such as leaving the house within an hour of when I intend to or . . . er, using the restroom with company. Crazy me, in my thirty-two years here before the wee CEO's appearance, I'd grown quite accustomed to my solitary bathroom arrangements.

As any Smug Mummy knows, those solo days are now a thing of the past, with the new reality of a toddler clambering for my attention at any & all times, including gleefully unfurling the toilet paper roll while I attempt to go about my business. If I foolishly do anything other than quickly answer nature's call, you can factor in a festival of unrolled dental floss or attempted raid on the (locked up) razors too.

Oh, sure - he looks innocent enough, but therein lurks the heart of a petty toiletries thief. (Photo Credit: Ziem Photography - hi, Z!)

This all came to a head - TEEHEE, see what I did there? - the other day when Master P & I were running errands, and I realized about halfway through a Costco expedition that I needed to avail myself of the facilities. I quickly ran through the Toddler Calculus of "How Quickly Can I Buy This and Get Home So I Don't Have to Deal With This Here?" and grimly realized that I could not accomplish the day's tasks without braving the public restroom, which was, as mandated by Murphy's Law, on the complete opposite side of the store. That sounds simple enough until you consider I was sans stroller or other toddler restraint device.

Readers, do you know how many ways there are to escape from a restroom stall if you're under 3 feet tall and your parent/freedom-restrictor is answering nature's call? Suffice it to say, I kept one hand on Master P's wiggly collar while I tried to hurry up doing what one does in a restroom. I cast my eyes Heavenward and frantically prayed that both my (full & paid-for outside) shopping cart and my child would remain intact after this experience, all the while trying to ignore the "EW, PUBLIC RESTROOM GERMS!" paranoid Mommy Alert going off in my head.

I swear I heard a voice boom out - "And Pretty Gets a 9.5 from the Romanian Judge!" - as we washed up and left to find our (intact, thankfully) cart and do our next errands. Yes, delusions of Olympic grandeur for making it through a public restroom trip - where is that glamorous, eating bonbons while watching soaps Stay-At-Home-Mom life again?

We survived, but I may cut back on my drinking (water, people, water!) on errand days. At least the imaginary Romanians approved.

Photo Credit: Ziem Photography 


Jessica said...

Ugh I hear this - and J is only 13 months! I about lost it today because all I wanted was one.freaking.second to do my business without J flushing the toilet on me. I don't even mind the flushing that much, but do you realize how close a toddler has to be to you to be flushing the toilet while you're on it? Of course you do. I guess I just need a smidge more personal space.

On the public restroom front, we're not big stroller people so J is always walking with me, in a cart, or being carried. I usually do okay with the family restrooms. At least I can lock the door and I know J can't get out, and I can remain unjudged as I hold her upsidedown and sideways trying to wash her hands on the way out.

Danielle said...

Bathroom privacy is a thing of the past. It's been gone for so long (4 years and counting) that I honestly don't even think about it anymore. Both of my boys follow me like hound dogs and love nothing more than to grace me with their presence as I do my business. I've found the best solution for my littlest guy is to sit him on my lap. Good times!

In public restrooms, I'm pretty sure my older son things they are of the devil. I have threatened his life so many times to not touch a thing that he stands like a soldier now. He even says "I know" as I start to remind him how dirty they are. I'm raising a germaphobe!

CJA said...

this is a GREAT post! I am your new follower and would love a follow back!

ms. mindless said...

You get a perfect 10 from me for managing the wee one and the cart in the costco bathroom. I can barely make it out of costco aline BY MYSELF.

Rhiannon said...

I find it difficult to use the ladies room with my non-mobile baby. I am scared for the day in which he can MOVE.

V. said...

Hahaha, this post cracked me up! I can sooo relate! I also learned the hard way to not drink too much water on errand days, in fact, on any day. I may be dehydrated, but I just don't have he energy to wrestle a toddler in the bathroom. Sigh.

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