Sunday, October 05, 2008

Potty Training and Poetic Justice

Last night I was at my parents' house, hanging out with the girls and the kids. My sister came out of the bathroom, complaining about the mess that one of our nephews had left in there. The offender's mother rolled her eyes and apologized. "He has the job of cleaning the toilets at home for that very reason. His dad calls him 'The Rainbird.'"

So my sister mentioned that I had taught my sons to sit down from the moment they began potty-training. Yes, it's true. My sons belong to the Secret Sitter's Club, as does their father. And he was taught that very valuable skill by his mother, who would listen outside the bathroom door and tell her husband and sons to please sit down because she could hear that they were standing up. (She would also notice when someone had spent extra time in the bathroom and then serve peaches for dinner. I tell you, it was a long time after Phil told me about this before I could comfortably use the bathroom at my in-law's house.)

After explaining that background to my SIL, I told about the time my MIL, Gert, was watching A-- for me at her house. He was about 3 and 1/2 or so and was potty trained. I went to pick him up and had to wait longer than usual for Gert to open the door. When she finally did, she was wearing her yellow rubber gloves. She apologized profusely for making me wait.

"I'm sorry it took me so long. I was in the bathroom, cleaning."

Then she said something that shocked me, because she is such a prim and proper lady.

"I am so glad you have taught your son to go to the bathroom properly! I am sick and tired of cleaning pee off the walls and floor around the toilets!"

Apparently, Phil's brother, who was visiting with his children (four of whom are boys), didn't pass along the Secret Sitter's Secret. He had brought along a fleet of his own "Rainbirds."

I have laughed long and hard at that story for many years, feeling pleased that my sons haven't created really horrendous messes in the bathroom for me to clean up.

Enter: Poetic Justice.

As I was finishing my story, I heard T-- calling from the bathroom: "MOOOoooooom, I needa WIIIiiiiipe!" My sister offered to help him, but he adamantly refused. I guess I was the only one he would allow into the inner sanctum.

I went into the bathroom, took one look at him, and thought (thought, not said, I'm careful around my kids), "Oh sh*#!" Literally. It was all over the seat, down into his underbunders, and all over one of his hands. He took one look at my face and started to cry. I reassured him that it was okay, just an accident, and we'd get it all cleaned up.

By the end of it, I'd thrown away said pair of underwear, put said child into the tub, disinfected said toilet, and run home and back for clean clothes and kid-friendly shampoo.

I feel humbled.


Queen Scarlett said...

I love your stories. The word in your head ... yep - was in mine leading up to what I read. ;-)

Elizabeth-W said...

I have two daughters, and one Secret Sitter. Most of the time. If he could be a SS 100% of the time life would be even better. Phil's not alone :D
I have to say when I saw the title of this post I thought, "Dang! She starts potty training before they can even walk????"

b. said...

All three boys in my house are SS Club members too.

Does your MIL read your blog?
(because that's a tiny bit over the top...SMART....but a little much)

NOBODY said...

HAHAAHA! Great story.
However, he is a good boy. He didn't expose it to your sister, and he didn't leave it for someone to discover.

I know someone, who shall remain nameless, that I am married to, who had a similar experience when he was 6 at an aunt's house. Only, two variations on his part, made it end entirely differently. 1. She had a bidet
2. he used her hand towels to clean up because he ran out of toilet paper.

This whole story is really funny.

Julie said...

QS: Thanks. I'm glad you like my stories.

EW: Phew! Wouldn't it be nice if I could potty train little J-- that soon?

b: I heart the SS Club. I detest cleaning toilets, but most especially if they are nasty. No, my sweet MIL doesn't read my blog. Even before she started showing signs of Alzheimer's, she could barely figure out how to turn on the computer. I'm sure the internet would completely overwhelm her.

nobody: So you can't leave that teaser in a comment without posting a full story. I'll be watching your blog even more vigilantly now. I will tell you, however, that I know someone too, who shall remain nameless, that I am married to, who peed behind a relative's couch one morning after spending the night there because the man of the house was in the one and only bathroom. (He reeeeeeally had to go, apparently.) And he never confessed to anything, even after comments were made later about there being a "funny smell" in the house.

cari said...

Secret Sitters Club --- brilliant.

It's probably too late to teach teenage boys huh?

AzĂșcar said...

Life just has a way of handing it to you, doesn't it?

Lesleigh said...

I love your stories! Even after hearing it in person I still laughed (and cringed) reading it!

Too bad I'd left the party early and missed all the fun!!

Melody said...

Can you say: "Code Brown"!? Good mommy. And good good girlfriend. Thanks for the congrats on my blog. I'm itching to visit with you more . .. life has become more busy than I expected, but I'll see you soon!!

Gerb said...

My boys are totally sitters. I mentioned it to a co-worker a few years back and he was horrified. He actually installed a urinal in his home so his boy would learn to pee "the right way". Whatever.

He kept telling me I should join this organization:

Anonymous said...

My husband is totally offended by the idea of peeing while sitting. He thinks it almost defeats the purpose of being a man.

I would just be so relieved that the fecal accident happened in the bathroom. I'm sure there would be no such luck in my house.