Monday, June 13, 2011

Hurricane Cael-trina

"Mommy, I pooped on the potty and I need you to wipe my bottom."

This is how I woke up on Saturday morning.  Or, to be more accurate, this is how I woke up the second time.  The first time happened at 5:50am when Cael realized the child-proof cover had accidentally been left on his door and he was stuck in his room.  So rather than waking up when I was fully rested, I stumbled down the stairs with my eyes still closed and only one sock on to rescue my screaming three year-old from a scenario that was totally not scream-worthy.

After sleepily putting Curious George in our room and whispering a quiet thank you for our DVR, I fell asleep again.  That is, until my oh-so-glamorous mommy duties began just barely after 6:00am.

"Mommy, I pooped on the potty and I need you to wipe my bottom."

"Okay, Cael.  Go sit on the potty and I'll be right there."

"But I have to poop!"

Huh?  "I thought you already went.  Do you still need to go?"

"Mommy, I'm gonna tell you the truth.  Mommy?  Are you awake?"

 "Yes, Cael.  What is it?"

"Okay.  I'm gonna tell you the truth now.  I need you to wipe my bottom."

This could go on all day.  You've all heard what happens when I indulge him--the questions get longer, the questions get louder, and the questions get so. much. weirder.  If this line of questioning continues, we will soon be discussing the composition and common characteristics of poop.  Rather than having to google the answers to a question I'd rather not know myself, I get my tired body out from under the warm covers and down the hall.  It's much easier to run a wipe between those cute little cheeks and throw myself back into bed.  So I did just that, snuggled up next to a wily three year old, and closed my eyes again.


That can't be good.  I look to my right... no Cael.  Still not good. 

"Psst, Mommy?"

"What, Cael?"

"I put some water in puppy's dish in case he gets thirsty."

You know those scenes in cartoons where the character is in bed in the dark, but when they open their eyes they glow bright white?  That was me, mentally analyzing the situation.  How bad could it be?  A little water in the dog's dish?  This isn't an emergency.  I can wipe it out when I put food in the dish at breakfast time.  While reaching out to pick up Cael to put him back in bed, I can feel that his pajamas are completely saturated with water, and we all know it can't be pee, since I worked the morning shift in the bathroom not long before.

"Cael, why is your shirt wet?"

"It's not wet.  Nope, not wet."

I was tired, no doubt.  I don't wake up with perfect mental clarity, but the scene in my laundry room was more reminiscent of Hurricane Katrina than my own home.  Wet footprints began down the hall and led in and out of the scene of the crime.  Reeeeeally not good.  Cael had, indeed, put some water in Oscar's food dish.  What he had forgotten to tell me, or omitted intentionally as I would suspect, since this kid's memory is tighter than an airplane blackbox, is that he had put the water in the dog's dish via his blue Easter BUCKET that he'd filled to the brim with water.  And dumped out.  And filled again.  And dumped out again.

The hurricane's aftermath was tangible-- I could feel the sand under my feet and stranded dogs barked off in the distance.  Loudly.  Dogs that sounded just like Oscar.  How long was I asleep?!?  I followed the barks and tried unsuccessfully to locate the dog.  Where would Cael stash him?  This is a loaded question, because Cael's ability to hide things is legendary.  (Want to hear about our 2-day hunt for his sandals?  No?)  Oscar could be stuck in the bathroom, or behind the baby gate in the basement.  (Heck, at this point the oven isn't out of the question.  Nope, nope (nope).  I checked the backyard on the off chance he'd let him out properly in what would have been the behavioral high point of the morning, but alas, the dog was not there.  Joel's Hawkeye flip-flops were out on the deck, however, dewy with tiny size 9 footprints.

There was only one other door to check for the dog, and it didn't make sense.  Was my dog barking and scratching at the front door?  I hollered for Joel to wake up, call FEMA and help with the clean-up efforts.  He rolled out of bed, completely unaware of the morning's activities because my husband (and all men, from what I understand) sleep so deeply that any efforts to awaken them before they are ready are not only unsuccessful, but yield conversations like, "I can't talk to you.  I have to take the trash out by 2:30."  Sure you do.  (And yes, Joel actually told me this in his sleep when I came to bed last week.)

As he empties out the flooded contents of the closet, I let my own dog in my house like a visitor stopping by for tea.  How did he get out there?  We have a fenced-in backyard and the front door was still dead-bolted, so I know he didn't leave the house this way.  I pondered this for a moment and my ears and still foggy brain tried to decipher the sound I was now hearing.  Glug, glug.  Clogged toilet?  Glug, glug.  Joel scrubbing the floor or siphoning water back into the sink?  Nope.  That's just the cat regurgitating a hairball on the still wet carpet, and on the stairs, and down in the basement.

Is this karma?  Which thing am I being punished for this time?  Is this because I went back to sleep?  Or is this because of that Ben & Jerry's I downed the other night?  Surely other mommies have found themselves on their knees, wet, cleaning up cat vomit and wiping poop, right?  Or did I take a wrong turn somewhere?  I gave up trying to understand any of the morning's weirdness and said a little thank-you prayer to God for keeping Graham asleep and therefore reducing my stress level even just a little bit.  I threw the wet towels in the utility sink, let out a sign of relief and remembered that sand underfoot earlier during the flood.  What WAS that?

"Mommy, I need to do another poop on the potty!"


  1. HHHHHHAAAAAHHHHHAAAAAAAHHHHHHAAAAAAA! That's a particular hell I'm actually happy to say I've never been through. I feel like giving Robert a hug. He's so addicted to PBS in the morning that he just crawls into bed with me and bugs me to turn cartoons on until I give in and sleep through him asking me questions about it until David wakes up. Mental hug to you! Are you dry yet?

  2. We're all dried out... for now! I'm wishing they manufactured cribs big enough to accommodate an almost 4 year old. If it's called a crib it can't be considered a "cage", right? :)


Leave your own "ism". Cael and Graham double-dog dare you.