Zoey has recently transitioned from diapers to panties. To be exact, panties with Elmo on them. And in case you have never potty trained another human being before, believe me when I tell you that the initial panty wearing period is HELL. Basically, you are just waiting around for an “accident” to happen. Will it happen on the new rug in the living room? Will it happen in the car? Will it happen in isle 3 of Market Basket? And here’s the thing: YOU NEVER KNOW.
“We don’t want to scare Elmo, do we?” I say. Zoey’s eyes widen, she looks at me solemnly and shakes her head no. “So we don’t want to pee or poo on Elmo, do we?” Again she shakes her head. “So we only pee and poo on the potty, right?” She nods, her eyes still big and, it must be said, the tiniest bit fearful. Then we go about our business. Zoey is building a tower on the living room floor. I am putting away laundry. The clink of wooden blocks slows and then stops. I hear Zoey muttering to herself. I peak around the door and see her holding out the waistband of her pink pants, gazing down at her crotch. “It OK, Elmo. It OK,” she whispers. And I, temporarily (and stupidly) blinded by my own evil-genius, think, My plan is working!
A few hours, and several successful trips to the potty, later we are having dinner. Zoey has finished her meal and is playing under the table. She is talking to herself and engaging in an elaborate game that involves a tissue, a stuffed kitten, one of my shoes, and an acorn. All of a sudden Zoey says, “Mommy? Daddy? I have tummy ache.” This might be a good time to point out that for the last two days, each time Zoey has said she has a tummy ache it has been followed, within minutes, by massive amounts of diarrhea. So, Zoey declares she has a tummy ache. And what do Demetri and I do? We sit there. LIKE TOTAL DUMB-ASSES.
*I swear I got this idea from another mom. So I’m not as evil as I sound. But, the thing is, I can’t remember who. Which leads to some important questions. The first of which is, Am I crazy?