Normally, when you have your two-year-old and your six-year-old passengers with you and the fetid scent of poop comes wafting up from the back seat of the car, the decision of where the smell is coming from is a swift one. The two-year-old. This is especially true when your six-year-old is nearly seven years old. But, that’s not true for all families. And that’s certainly not true in my world. In fact, this morning, it most certainly was not the two-year-old.
Unfortunately, as fate would have it, I did not have a change of clothes in my car either. So, I dropped Big Guy off at daycare, and drove Squeaker to school smelling like, well, crap. I prayed that no one would notice how he smelled. This wouldn’t be the first time. I don’t know how this happens more than once, but this is the second time this has happened. It only happens on days that I don’t have a change of clothes. Maybe I need to keep a chest of drawers in my trunk. But, I walked him in and rushed him the long walk all the way to the back of the school to his classroom where he had clean clothes.
It was like prodding the slowest sloth in the universe to walk quickly through quicksand, which, incidentally, does not make anyone move any quicker. Why is it called quicksand if it slows you down? So, I managed to make him walk a normal pace, which was as fast as we could go possibly go when I want to go fast. But, if I wanted him to slow down, he’d be outpacing me by a mile.
Finally, we got to his classroom. I explained the situation. It always makes me feel bad to drop him off that way. Always. I feel guilty. It’s not my fault his pooped his pants. He didn’t even tell me that he had to go. Hell, he didn’t tell me he went. I wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t smelled it. But, I feel guilty, like I have laid a burden on someone else and it’s my responsibility to take care of it. But, I’m going to be late if I stay and take care of it. So, I let his teacher know what happened and I leave, taking note of the fact that I need to bring him more clothes. I wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t seen her pulling the clothes out of the bag and noticed the lack of underwear. Seems like he’s had less accidents at school than at home (in the safety of home, he can quickly strip and put on new clothes).
I get about 5 miles down the road before the school calls. It’s the Assistant Principal telling me the TA called her to tell her I had left in a hurry with my son in a mess. Apparently it was a big accident that went up his back. Well, I had no way of knowing that. She lectured me about making sure he had a change of clothes at the school. I told her that I did bring a change of clothes. There was a vague accusation of him possibly being sick because he was lethargic yesterday, as if I was ignoring him being sick (I told the teacher yesterday that he had been up most of the night before and he was clearly not lethargic today). I ignored the accusation, knowing they’d figure out he wasn’t sick pretty quickly once they saw his energy level. Of course, they also didn’t have the supplies to clean him up and had to give him a shower, so I also was asked to bring in plenty of wipes for them to keep. I don’t have a problem with that. What I do have a problem with is being talked to like I don’t take care of my child. This was a one day isolated incident where my child had an extreme accident that they were unprepared to handle and I didn’t realize they were out of resources to handle it. They could’ve communicated to me prior to today and I would’ve had supplies there already.
It’s bad enough feeling guilty dropping my son off the way I did. I will do better next time. Now that I’m typing this, I’m remembering that I forgot to pick up wipes to drop off with him tomorrow. But, you know, these are just not things you think about typically with a child his age. He doesn’t have accidents that frequently and we use cloth diapers and wipes with my other boy, so it’s an extra consideration that I have to make. So, on my checklist of things to do: Buy wipes, pack extra underwear, pants, and shirts for Squeaker.
Because, you know, crap happens. Gotta be ready for that.
When the atypical happens in your life, how do you deal with it?