Friday, March 18, 2011

Caught Red Handed

Q: Is it ever ok to lie to your child?
A: Yes, when she walks in and sees you extracting a tampon.

And so it went something like this. There i was, just home from work, needing to pee so badly that my back teeth were floating. Ran in, kissed Olive, announced I just needed to wee and scuttled off. Anyway, I was literally hemorrhaging and i knew I had a limited amount of time to make the change. I was thankfully wearing tights but knew the sight was going to pretty grim upon wiggling them down. Down came the knickers, and then as though in slow motion, thumb met finger and went in for the kill. So, there I am, hovering over the toilet seat. And at this point, i suspect some people can picture the scene, others are scarred at the thought, but a few more perhaps find this unimaginable because they themselves adopt the sit down pose upon extraction. For me, just like opening my mouth when applying mascara, i stand there legs akimbo and pull. It's a stealth operation, because if you are not quick, a swing in the wrong direction can have you grabbing a flannel and mopping the floor. Dear lord, i am making myself sound like i'm some 16th century wench who empties her chamber pot from the window.

Fact: being a woman is not glamorous.

Anyway, so there i am doing a semi squat, knees bent, tights hinged mid thigh, bright yellow thong resting slightly higher. Pencil skirt hitched up to my waist and just as I am breathing a sigh of relief that i didn't go through onto my skirt, sodden tampon swinging in the wind... in walks Olive.

Now, I've had some doozies in my life. At about 23, I vomited in the middle of a subway platform and when viewed with disgust by fellow rush hour passengers, i looked up with yesterday's mascara in my brows and pretended that it was morning sickness. I think it was the clear liquid puke that stank of vodka that gave me away.

Regardless, that was then. This was now and here I was. Caught red handed.

She came, she saw, she whimpered.
"Momma" she said and began to cry.

I drop it in the loo at this point.

"Momma got owie" , she said. Insert terrified two year old face at this point.

"Oh no, it's just a red poop". I say. This is what you call, thinking on your feet.

"Red poo poo", she repeats, - even more startled look, tears, arms outstretched.

I sit on toilet seat.

And now, i think, "Oh crap, i can't say a red poop. We are about to start potty training, I can't have her think that is normal".

And so logic took me to a better place...honesty? Nope, not even close!

"Oh darling, it's okay, it's just a red crayon"

Relief in toddler's face.

"Crayon? I wanna color."

"Okay, we can color - how about go and get the colors and mummy will come in in a minute and we can color."

"Ok" Olive starts to leave. I am a genius.

Faster than a speeding bullet, I pluck a fresh tampon from the cupboard, rip the wrapper with my teeth...

And then, re-entry - for Olive...

Upon, seeing pink plastic applicator - "I wanna color, " she says.

"Ok - me too - let mummy just do this"

"Mummy color?"

"Yes, mummy just needs to put this color in and we can go in the other room"

"Mummy color?"

"Yep, go on, go in the other room, I'll be right in." I am starting to make a shooing action.

"I wanna color"

(about here i think: ohgodijustcamehomefromworkiamsotiredijustwanttopullonmypyjamas)

"OK - Mummy, has a color" Here, all logic disappears out the fan extractor and I actually hand the fresh tampon applicator to Olive. It's a Playtex pink, scented one, so somehow this seemed better.

(I know...okay, i know)

"Red poop?" she said.

"No, Olive. (and this is the real kicker). Mummy colors every once in a while and sometimes she keeps a color tucked away. Ok?"

"Ok" This she understands and produces a smile. I am a genius.

Smiling - "Ok, give mummy the color and you go out."

"I wanna color"


And then in a break with tradition, and because i just couldn't go any further with this whole Crayola episode, I took the crayon from her hand muttering something about safety and sat on the loo and in a first time move, I performed the seated one handed underhand insert and no doubt scarred my daughter for life. We walked out holding freshly washed hands and colored for all of 5 seconds before we went on to playing musical statues.

Next day at bath time? I'm just sitting on the lid of the toilet while she lies on her tummy, discreetly drinking the soap water hoping i won't see...but I do and when I say, "Olivia, No", she turns and upon seeing me on the loo, she asks if she can color?"

And that's the truth. Period.


  1. You are truly hysterical and I think you handled it very well! I will never not think of you when I see a red crayon from now on! XOXO Ratbagala

  2. This is the best thing I've read all week.

  3. And this is why I love you.


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