While conversing with my buddy Scott, my lovely spouse was playing with our beautiful little girl. It came time to feed her, and then to change her and put her to bed. Scott and I were still talking when my wife poked her head into the room, our little girl snug in her pajamas. I kissed her goodnight and my wife whispered, “When you’re done, I need your assistance.” This didn’t sound urgent, and our little girl was snug and ready for bed, so I didn’t sense a need to hurry. Scott and I finished our conversation, and I went downstairs to the bedroom.
My wife was stripping the bedsheets, and I immediately spotted a brown stain on them. “She had a major, major poop,” my wife said. Then I looked and saw a stream of brown stains on the carpet.
“Did that leak out of her diaper while you moved her to the changing table?” I asked.
“No,” my wife growled, “that shot out of her ass.”
My eyes went wide and my wife recounted the story for me. While playing with our daughter on the bed after feeding her, she saw her stop and sit back while a look of serious concentration passed over her face. We are not unfamiliar with this look, and my wife was not surprised when she heard the accompanying squirt. But it was a bit louder and longer than usual, and she instantly saw the tan liquid oozing out of the diaper’s edge at our little girl’s thigh. It was too late to save the bedspread from getting dirty, but my wife tried to minimize the mess by scooping her up and swooping her across the room to our changing table. Apparently, the smell was atrocious: rotten eggs, old fish, hot chalk. She laid our little stinker on the changing table and pulled her onesie back to find that it had already leaked up the top of the diaper across her back.
She undid the dirty diaper and pulled it down. “Waterlogged” is how she described it to me, although obviously “water” is not the appropriate substance.
But our little girl wasn’t finished. As soon as she was clear of the dirty diaper – well, my wife’s words describe it pretty well: it shot out of her ass.
The stain on the carpet, however, was only about 20% of what was evacuated. My wife blocked the other 80%. This was fortunate for the carpet; not so fortunate for my wife.
If it weren’t for my wife’s instinctual reflexes, she would have blocked every last bit of it. But when a stream of warm poo comes hurtling your way, I dare you to try not dodging it. So my wife screamed and tried to jump away, to no avail, our little girl all the while mildly amused by the spectacle. Several towels were used in the service of wiping down my wife’s arms and our little girl’s entire back and bottom.
Concerned that our little girl might be sick or have a stomach bug, I went back to her daycare bag and pulled out the daily log of activities, which the daycare uses to track every feeding, changing, and nap that occurs during the day. Indeed, this sort of bowel movement had been the norm for the day – five others of its type had been logged with the descriptive note, “very loose.” Other data included: they had had to change her clothes three times due to this very loose attitude her bowels had adopted for the day.
Despite no noticeable change in her attitude – I had been completely oblivious to any gastrointestinal distress when picking her up and feeding her earlier in the evening – I began to worry about her health and consulted one of the many parenting handbooks by our bedside. Flipping through the pages, I found a helpful Q&A regarding the diagnosis of diarrhea. No, she didn’t have fever; no, she wasn’t throwing up. No lethargy or crankiness; no concern of dehydration, since the daycare log indicated her wet diapers were as steady as usual. Then the question I asked of my wife: “Has she eaten any new foods recently?”
“I gave her yogurt yesterday,” my wife answered. “She loved it; she ate the whole cup.”
“Let’s not give her yogurt ever again,” I suggested while scrubbing the carpet.
Now, any parent will tell you: shit happens. I imagine that many of you parents reading this blog might be saying out loud, “You think that’s bad…” while recalling your own story of high-velocity excrement. I suppose we should be thankful that we made it ten months without either of us having poo spewed upon us.
And thanks to Scott, my, uh, streak is still intact. So thank you, Scott. Because of when you called me, I dodged a bullet. A speedy brown bullet of poo. But I’m sure my day will come. Shit happens, right?