After the birth of our daughter, there were a number of hang-ups that my husband & I had to let go of. Things such as crumbs on the floor & never having an empty laundry basket were a difficult reality. One of the hardest things for me was getting over my slight germophobia. With a poop covered baby, pacifiers on the floor & a wardrobe riddled with spit up & drool, I had to learn to control my phobia in order to save my sanity. I have come a long way, but still I have an extreme distaste for public restrooms.
The repulsiveness of public restrooms is just too much for me to handle. I can barely handle my own bathroom never mind entering a room with crumbled up toilet paper & paper towels on a floor puddled with urine. For some reason, I always seem to end up in a stall next to a woman with explosive diarrhea. While one of her feet makes way into my stall during her release, my super sensitive nose & gag reflex kick in. She miraculously makes it out of the bathroom before me, timing it out just right so that the next person that enters is welcomed by me washing my hands & the pungent smell of some 80 year old woman’s bowels. She looks at me in disgust while I slink out holding my pants up so that the hem does not fall into the land mine of puddles.
When my daughter was born, my fear of the public toilets was elevated by nearly triple. I stopped using them almost all together because I did not want to subject her to my restroom hell. I put up a good fight, but I could not keep her out of them forever. Now that she is exclusively peeing in the potty, I have had no choice.
Today while out to breakfast, she spoke those dreaded 5 words. “I have to go potty.” We made the mad dash for the bathroom. It was a single stall. We entered the room & were greeted by the signature puddles.
“Don’t step in the puddles.”
“Don’t touch the walls.”
“Don’t touch anything.”
These were the words that I hollered as I frantically laid toilet paper on the seat one square at a time because the roll was stuck. All the while I kept thinking about the diaper in my purse.
“Just put in on her.” I thought as I placed my daughter very carefully on the paper.
She screamed out “No paper under my butt! Take it off!”
Mai began bucking herself off the toilet while grabbing onto the sides of the germ filled porcelain. The paper fell off and she regained her composure & peed. My little girl slid off the toilet and began to pull her pants back up.
“Wait, wait, wait!” I grabbed her and cleaned her hands & bottom with soapy water.
My confused child asked “Mama, what you doing? Why you wash my bummy?”.
What was I doing? I guess my germophobia has not quite gone away after all. I never thought I would actually wish that my daughter was back in diapers.