Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Poop on the Big Poop

Malcolm pooped on the potty today, of his own accord!

As per usual, that is not the whole story.

Malcolm has been showing a lot of interest in the potty lately. Reading "Potty" by Leslie Patricelli (author of such riveting fare as "No No, Yes, Yes" and "Big Little"), reading "Elmo's Potty Book" and "cleaning" the toilet at every opportunity. Fortunately, he has started using a toilet brush instead of my toothbrush for that particular task.

It usually goes like this: I mention the bathroom in passing ("Daddy's in the bathroom.") and Malcolm says "Pwease, Mama, use potty!" Then he strips completely naked, including shedding his socks, sits on the potty, releases a little stream of pee, throws vast amounts of toilet paper into the potty for no reason other than he knows Lucy always puts toilet paper in after she pees, flushes and prances away happily, naked cheeks a-jiggling. Every time he poops, he tells me after he poops. When I am changing his diaper - which he fights like a rabid bear - I say "If you don't want me to change your diaper, then you have to tell me before you poop and you can poop in the potty!" Every time, every poop, for weeks I have been saying this.

Today, he lays on the floor and says "Mama, have poop!" So we tromp up the stairs, I get him on the changing table only to find there is no poop.

"Did you mean you need to poop?"

"Yes, Mama. Have POOP!"

"Oh! Okay! Let's go!"

We go to th bathroom. He strips naked and sits on the potty. He pees. "All done!"

"That wasn't poop, buddy, that's pee."

"Oh. Awight, Mama, awight. Bye."

"You want me to go?"


I leave. He locks the door. I go to his room and start folding laundry. He runs out three minutes later.


"Did you poop on the potty!"


I run into the bathroom and there is a perfect littl turd...on the floor in front of the toilet. I burst out laughing.

"Close, boy-o! So close! Next time sit on the potty to poop so it goes in the toilet!"

"Oh, okay, Mama, okay, awight, okay."

I clean up the poop, and take him to get wiped up and into a new diaper. As I clean him up, he says he has to poop. Okay, off to the potty again. He pees.

"That's pee, buddy. Pee comes out of your penis, poop comes out of your anus. It is different hole in in your bottom."

"Why hole in bottom?"

"So the poop can get out."

"Oh, okay, Mama. GO AWAY!"

"Uhhh...okay..." I leave, return to clothes folding. Fifteen second later, Malcolm comes running out of the bathroom again, looking slightly panic stricken.

"MAMA! POOOOOP! Put it back in!"

I look out in the hallway and he is running towards me, little chunks of poop falling out of his butt as he runs. Oh Lordy. I pick him up and put him on the potty so I can wipe him up.

"More poop. Go AWAY!"

Good lord, how much more can he produce? I leave him there with the suggestion that he sit on the potty while he poops, so the poop can go into the potty, then he can watch it flush down if he wants to. Good fun! He giggles a little, as if the suggestion is absurd.

"Ha! Okay Mama!"

I talk with Kevin for a bit, then go back up to get him dressed so we can go to the grocery store and then pick up Lucy from school.

The bathroom has a distinctly aromatic air. Malcolm is still sitting on the potty. There is a very big poop. IN the potty. Kevin and I clap and whoop like idiots. Malcolm smiles a sheepish, but clearly very proud, smile.

"Okay, awight, okay, Mama. Poop!"

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

On Our 7th Anniversary

In March of 2007, about two weeks before my wedding, I went to a yoga training. There, I met a kind man named Ranjit. Ranjit was something of an intuitive (though, as his wife said, "a somewhat drunken intuitive"). He came up to me on the last day of the training, after we were all flush from a no-holds-barred, crazy joyful dancing session, and said to me "Are you sure you are going to marry this man? He is a very difficult man. I can see it being very hard for both of you." Just what a girl two weeks from her wedding wants to hear, right? I said "I love him. I've never been sure about anything before, but I am sure about this." Ranjit smiled and hugged me, and that was the end of it. I went home, got married and now today is Kevin and I's seventh anniversary.

I haven't thought about Ranjit for some time, and for some reason it all came back to me yesterday. And you know, he was right. Kevin is a difficult man, and it has been difficult. We have had money issues, communication issues, parenting issues, issue issues. But what Ranjit failed to mention was that I am also a difficult woman, and marriage is a two way street. It is easy to be negative about someone when the chips are down. But I have noticed some important things. My husband is difficult because he feels. He feels deeply and fully and thinks long and hard about how his actions affect the people around him. He is difficult because he genuinely wants to grow and learn and be a better man. He is difficult because he wants to protect his family from the evils of the world and sometime he just can't see how he can possibly do it the way things stand.

And though Ranjit may have been right about some of the struggles we would face together, he apparently missed all the ways my husband is awesome.

Kevin cares so much about the little guy, the underdog, the bullied, the forgotten. He would move heaven and earth to give a hand to someone who needed it, and feels their pain like it is his own.

Kevin is deeply loyal. I know he has my back, my front and all the other sides. I know I can count on him for anything (unless it involves my dirty feet. Then I'm on my own).

Kevin is really freaking funny. No one else makes me laugh the way he does. No one else has EVER made me laugh the way he does. No one makes anyone laugh the way Kevin does. People literally pay him to make them laugh, and I get it for free, all the time.

Kevin is gentle and kind. Don't let the gruff exterior and perma-scowl fool you. He does kind things, he says kind things, he gives warm hugs that stop the world and make it all better.

Kevin is an amazing dad. He makes so much fun for our children. He kisses boo-boos, paints tiny fingernails, plays dress-up, has tea parties, makes movies, runs, throws rocks, builds forts, laughs at inane jokes, makes Mac 'n' cheese like a pro, tucks in, sings, distracts, teaches, protects, provides for, loves loves loves loves loves. Watching Kevin with our kids is one of my greatest joys. Hearing the three of them laugh and play together makes my heart soar. He is an amazing dad.

Kevin is silly. He makes up silly love songs about me. He does goofy voices. He makes up stories. He tells tall tales. He pulls pranks. He dances like a dork. He knows everything about every movie and actor ever made.

Kevin cares so much about the world. He really does. He says he hates it. He says he hates everybody in it. But that's because he wants so much to make the world a better place for his children, and can't quite find the way to get a handle on how. He cares so much about the world we are leaving our children.

Kevin loves me. He loves me. As I noted earlier, Ranjit failed to mention how difficult I am. I am picky. I want things my way. I nag, I nitpick, I grumble, I change my mind, I forget to put things on the calendar, my schedule is crazy and totally unpredictable, I leave my damn shoes everywhere, I forget to push in my chair. He more than tolerates me. He loves me and shows it every day.

So Ranjit was right. And while our life certainly hasn't been rife with tragedy by any stretch of the imagination, there have been some steeper ups and downs than I would have liked. But I'm not sure he wasn't just The fact remains. I love him. I have never been sure of anything, but I am still sure of this.

Happy anniversary, Kevin.