Are you starting to think that I’m making stuff up for blog posts? I swear to you this is an accurate account of the events that occurred in my living room two hours ago.
The phone rang and I had to search for the receiver. Gee sat enthroned on the Elmo potty for his post-lunch sit-in in front of PBS. Ess and the baby played. The caller was the pediatrician’s office wanting to reschedule appointments. It took a few minutes and I was distracted from the living room. Periodically, I covered the mouthpiece and said sweetly, “Keep pushing your penis down, baby, so the pee-pee goes in the potty.”
The smell in the living room, when I entered, hit me like a brick wall. The baby’s back was covered in yellow, smeary excrement. Massive baby diaper blowout. I picked him up and he immediately twisted and covered my shirt in his shit. Due to unbelievably poor planning on my part, the diaper bag remained in the stroller out front after our morning walk. I had to retrieve it while keeping hold of my poop-greased pig, ah, I mean baby. I got him onto the plastic mat, naked, and was working on wiping him down when Ess started to cry. She’d peed on the floor. Not her fault. Marathon potty-sitting boy had been monopolizing the Elmo potty for an hour. I hissed at her in my sternest I mean it voice, “Don’t move I’ll be right there.”
Looking back down at the baby, I realized that my hair, which I left down this morning, was dangling in the shit all over the front of my shirt. I managed to take my shirt off while holding down the baby and repeatedly admonishing my crying daughter to just stay where she was. Please, I beg you, child. Just don’t move. And, also, my son to please, please keep his penis pointed down, if he wouldn’t mind.
The baby was basically clean and into a new diaper.
The doorbell rang for the first time. The couch sat between me and the door and I couldn’t see who it was. Go away, I mentally projected. I put the baby to the side and started working on Ess.
The doorbell rang a second time. I got that panicky, crazy feeling of immediacy that the phone or door bell can sometimes create, even though you know that nothing bad will happen if you don’t answer the phone or door. You’re not obligated. The person can come back later.
Keeping the baby out of the mess with one hand, I finished cleaning up Ess.
The doorbell rang a third time.
I rose from the floor with all the wet, poop-covered clothes and wipes in one hand. Two teenagers, a boy and a girl, selling something, stood outside the door. I stomped to the door, which is made primarily of glass windows, and threw it open with sparks shooting out of my eyes. I held up one finger in their shocked faces and turned to the side to address my son. KEEP YOUR PENIS POINTED DOWN, PLEASE!
I turned back to the adolescent boy on my porch and said, fairly nicely, “Whatever it is, I don’t have time for it right now.” He nodded, mouth open, backing away from the door.
I closed the door. Gee smiled brightly at me. “My penis is down, Momma.” Excellent son. After disposing of the disgusting mess of clothes and wipes, I went into the bathroom to wash my hands. I took several deep breaths. I looked up into the mirror and beheld my frazzled face, my hair with poop on the ends, my bare shoulders and my lacy black bra. Oh. Right. No shirt.
And that, officer, is how I became a high school legend. The legend of the crazy lady on the corner who answers the door in her bra, holding poop, with her naked daughter and baby boy at her feet, while shouting at her other son to keep his penis down.