As I’ve mentioned, I’m in the midst of transferring some old VCR recordings to DVD – saving memories for posterity. I’m trying to put everything in chronological order, starting with my marriage to Doc and moving on, through the birth of our children, their toddler and school years, and finally, to their high school and college graduations.
Today, I’m watching Daughter #3 – five days after she was born. My in-laws flew in to San Diego to see her and we spent several days visiting the sites around town – the Wild Animal Park, zoo, and SeaWorld. But a lot of the video is just scenes of Daughter #3 – giving her a bath, changing her diaper, holding her. At one point, I’m cradling her in my arms and she is just staring at me with this innocent little face and her wide, chocolate eyes. I’m struck with the enormity of my responsibility as a mother, to love, care for, and help shape this child’s view of the world and herself.
I also remember the time she made me shit my pants.
The day after I gave birth to Daughter #3 and was recovering in the hospital, my very best friend, Ann, came to visit. Ann and I had worked together at a radio station and she is one of the funniest, friendliest, nicest people that I know – I just loved her (I still do!) Another thing that I loved was See’s chocolate almond clusters – and Ann knew me well.
When she came that day, she brought me two pounds of the stuff – probably figuring that I had just lost 8 pounds of baby, so I could justify eating two pounds of chocolate. I did not disagree and set to work on the task with joyful abandon.
Before I was released from the hospital two days later, I had nearly finished the entire box.
Those of you who have given birth know what squeezing something the size of a small watermelon out of your hoohaw does to your pelvic floor. For those of you who have not, let me just sum it up by saying that it’s not good – things get loose and the muscles are tired and need time to remember how to work well and contract back into shape (and alas, they never seem to remember fully). What this means is that if you have to, say, pee – things tend to dribble – before and after.
What I didn’t take into consideration is that this problem might also occur with…other functions. The day after I got home from the hospital I was sitting on the couch (gingerly, as things down there were still tender). I reclined back a bit as my distressed abdominal muscles protested. Just as I got comfortable, all of those See’s chocolate almond clusters that I had consumed a few days before decided it was time to complete their journey through my body. I had a horrible cramp, a rumble, and then another, even worse cramp. I knew what was coming and while I struggled to get back up to sitting position and inch my way off the couch – my post-baby body was not cooperating.
I clenched my butt cheeks and abdominal muscles to hold everything in – and belatedly realized that, while they gave it a valiant effort, none of those muscles were able to comply. Just as I reached the edge of the couch, another horrible, cramping wave hit – and then the floodgates opened. I was horrified as I sat there, feeling warm goo fill my underwear and knowing there was nothing I could do to stop it. Doc was sitting on the other couch and asked me if I was OK. I could do nothing but began to cry as another wave hit and another spurt of shit was expelled. My mortification was complete as I had to explain to Doc that I had just shit my pants – and possibly the couch as well.
Doc couldn’t have been sweeter and more supportive. He assured me all was well and helped me to the bathroom so that I could strip, shower and dress in clean clothes. He also cleaned the couch and washed my soiled clothes. Unfortunately for him, this would not be the last time he would have to clean up disgusting emissions from my body – but that’s another story.
Perhaps it is unfair to blame my daughter for the fact that I shit my pants – more aptly I should blame my gluttony and inability to say no to a chocolate almond cluster. Believe it or not, I still love those damn chocolate almond clusters – but these days, when I visit See’s, I buy just one or two clusters to enjoy. There’s no sense in tempting fate!
Have you ever had an embarrassing, involuntary emission of something that normally finds a home in the toilet? What food wreaks havoc on your digestive system – but you just can’t stay away from it?