Friday 1 September 2017

I Gotta Go!

I had one of those parenting moments the other day. You know those moments, when you step back and think, okay, perhaps some of this sh*t is sinking in!

The King has this thing where he always somehow needs to go to the bathroom when he’s NOT in the house. And we’re not talking the easy peasy, go behind the tree type bathroom need. No matter how many times I ask him if he needs to go before we leave home, he of course always seems to wait till we’re in the most inconvenient situation or place to go number 2. Needless to say, I’ve had to sit in public restrooms all across London while the King sits on his public throne for 25 minutes wanting to talk about ‘super cars’ while I try not to touch anything. You can imagine for my OCD, it is not a fun ride. In fact, I literally stand in the middle of the room, whilst plugging my nose, wondering about the bacterial trail from my position in the room to the sink.

Anyway, we were at the train station the other day about to board a train and he of course got that look… I will freely admit, I did not meet this “I gotta go” request with the utmost patience. Cause, well, this whole déjà vu scenario was getting old and I was in no mood to set up camp in Costa Coffee restroom while he waxed on about car chassis. 

Alas, he had to go and the station had one of those bathrooms that you had to pay for – to segue, I find paying to pee an affront to my civil rights and I want to literally hurl the King over the turnstile instead of paying and scream about the injustices of the world, but that's me - So, in my impatient rant about the King’s constant bad timing for poo-poo, I paid for him to go through, hurled the suitcase over the gate and then realised I was stuck on the other side with no more change.

It then dawned on me, he’s 7, I could see the stalls from my vantage point and we were in a rush. So I told him, take the suitcase (so I could identify what stall he was in), go in and get your business done and I’ll wait here. He gave me this panicked look (as this bathroom was like a crowded melee of men with suitcases), but he knew I was in no mood for negotiation. To sidestep for a moment, yes, I realize I’m coming off as overly protective, I live in a big city and he’s usually with me in the women’s room yapping away in the next stall so it’s rare he goes off to find the restroom by himself (judge me for my overprotection, I could care less).

So I stood there like a protective mother lion and watched his little feet in the stall for a few minutes. A few more minutes passed, then a few more. I of course started to pace and stare at passing men who rushed into the bathroom wondering who wouldn’t think I was totally odd for asking them to check on my son peeing in the fourth stall from the left. At this point our train was leaving shortly and I was starting to envision myself jumping the gate in a frenzy, tearing into the Men’s room and rescuing my son from whatever the hell was going on in there.

Finally, after 10 minutes (which felt like 100) the King opened the stall and hurried out. He had a look of half victory, half mortification on his face. By the time he got to me, we were both acting like he had been backpacking across Europe. I hugged him, telling him I was proud of him for venturing into the big bad bathroom all by himself, and let’s get the heck out of here cause we had a train to catch.

He looked at me, a tad overwhelmed, hugged me and said, ‘Mommy, I just need a moment.’ [Clearly he now feels the same way about public restrooms as I do]. It was in that moment that I felt a ridiculous sense of pride (no, not for the fact that he used a bathroom by himself).. but the fact that he was clearly having an emotional reaction to what just transpired and he had the wherewithal to ask me for a moment to just gather himself; something I tell him often to do if he needs one as I'm big on taking a moment in life to just...well, work things out!  Let’s be honest, it takes some men decades to identify an emotion and ask for the time to process it. But he's 7 and well, the kid sometimes just gets it. 

And yes, I love him for it… I just wish he’d start using the bathroom at home! 

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