Monday, April 19, 2010

A Record-Setting Potty Training Incident

WARNING, readers - this post is filled with potty talk!

My, how our parties have changed since college... On Saturday night we welcomed a house full of friends from college and their children. Close to an hour after dinner I began reflecting on how well Elynor was doing playing downstairs with the other kids. About 10 minutes earlier she'd come upstairs to let us know she needed to go to the bathroom (we're 2 weeks into potty training), and after a successful visit she headed back down. Had we reached a new phase of maturity, I wondered?

These thoughts had barely left my mind when one of the visiting little boys came upstairs to tell me, "Your daughter needs some help in the bathroom. I think she needs help wiping her poop.". "Awesome!", I thought. "She'd gone on her own... Sure I'll come help.".

And there the story turns. Walking down the stairs, the horrible smell hit me. My first thought was that she must have REALLY had to go.... but, goodness, she had just gone about 10 minutes before.

And then I turn the corner... to find this scene (minus Rye... and Elynor sheepishly standing against the back wall):
WHOA! I stopped dead in my tracks. My olfactory senses were in overdrive and my shock nearly knocked me over. Honestly, I could not believe my eyes. I wish I had a picture of my face. Not knowing where to start, I told Elynor to stand in the shower and I ran upstairs for reinforcements.

I imagine Rye & my sister Katie thought I was overreacting when I summoned them down to help... but very soon they, too, met the horror. We all broke into frightened laughter, each hoping the others would propose a game plan.

And that we did. After sharing the above photo with the guests upstairs (who also laughed hard... a mixture of pity and thanks for their own removal), we cranked into action. Elynor enjoyed the longest shower of her life (she needed it) while Rye tackled the laundry and I braved the floor. Katie started on floor duty but quickly used her "I'm just the aunt" card to shift to photo/redressing Elynor/lighting candle duty.

In Elynor's defense, this disaster was born out of her attempt to clean herself up after not making it to the toilet. She had removed her own pants, placed her underwear in the sink, and gotten on the toilet when I think she realized the issue was far beyond her abilities. What I wonder is how the little boy who summoned me got involved. Did she ask him to come get me? Did he stumble on the scene and realize reinforcements were needed?

By the end of the night our bathroom & Elynor were as clean as they've been in a long time. And everyone's abs were aching from some serious laughter!

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