Everyone knows, or jokes, about certain things that you can kiss goodbye when you become a parent: privacy, sleep, and sex. I want to write about 2 of the less talked about things that change or disappear when the vail on parenting gets thrown back, and you are thrust ass first into the squall!
- Poop. Anyone with any aversion to poop please check it at the door. Parenting is not a poop free zone. Okay, so nobody told me this, and I was very much someone with poop aversions. We are talking a poop aversion to the point that one boyfriend, whom I lived with, actually asked me if I pooped because he never heard, saw, or smelt any indication that I completed this essential activity. So, you can only imagine my horror when I was thrust ignorantly into a world of exploding diapers where poop travelled with unnatural force from the bum up to the back of the hairline. One night I thought my little baby was trying to shit us both to death because I would no sooner get his escaping poop disaster cleaned up and he would do it again, and again, and again! My mother-in-law thought this was the funniest thing in the world, and I’m not sure if she was more amused by the amount of feces coming from the happy baby, or by my complete green and stomach-churning disgust. And when did dumps become a first class topic of conversation. “How many times does the baby poop in a day?” Um, excuse me? I need to count that, and report it? Baby doctors as poop police; okay, check another box on my turd desensitization program. But, I think I finally expelled my crap aversion fully when it became clear that I could never hide the fact that I too was governed by the natural law of excrement. Privacy in the bathroom is uncharted territory in parenting; okay, so my children know I poop. Do you know what children do with knowledge that they have? They share it! Who knew they’d enter a room in front of me and announce to everybody present, “Mom went poop”? So, having now lived through the horrors of the shit wars, I feel the need to arm those coming behind me with the knowledge that poop, and pooping, will never be the same after becoming a parent.
- Brain loss. Okay, so in terms of my intellectual capacity before children, I was fucking smart. After children (heavy sigh) there is no end to my stupidity! This is another of those things that nobody talks about until you get caught in your first baby-brain moment. Um, hello; this would have been useful information! I’m going to be honest because I haven’t been able to find anybody to be honest with me, it doesn’t get better. Those brain cells are just gone, I don’t know where, but they aren’t where they use to be. To make matters worse, it seems that some days my brain actually seems to be teasing me about this loss; it is as if my brain, and the creators of pregnancy are sitting on the sidelines of life pointing at me and laughing! Look at her, she forgot her words mid-sentence and is just sitting there with her mouth open trying to get them back. Or, haha, her 5 year old dresses better then she can: underwear on inside out, 2 different socks, and pajama pants with her dress shirt, and she feels like she got it right this morning. Completely clueless! My finest moment, where I had no choice but to give over to my brain and laugh with it, involved my morning coffee. I was using one of those little VIA ready to brew coffee packs from Starbucks, I cut it open and I stood smiling (yes smiling) over the garbage can as I poured the coffee grounds into the trash. Still smiling stupidly, I returned to my coffee cup on the counter and added hot water, stirred, and left it while I completed some other morning task (No, not pooping). When I returned to my mug for that first mouth-watering sip, I was stunned that it was only hot water. I actually looked around to see who took my coffee, surely someone was playing tricks on me. As I stood there baffled, the trickster revealed itself in a form of slow-motion playback of me happily pouring the coffee grounds into the trash! I keep waiting for the slow-motion playback of where I poured my missing brain cells, but either I missed the playback completely, or I put it in the cupboard with the milk jug.
By Shari Marshall – 2015