Budgie has a bad cold. He’s snotty and coughing and flat-out disgusting. He’s extra cuddly, though, and when he smiles at me with his boogery upper lip, it melts me. Anyway, he’s extra cuddly because he’s tired. He isn’t sleeping well when he sleeps flat in his crib because he’s all congested. But when he reclines on my chest, he can breathe a little better.
So we’re kicking back, watching some PBS Kids this morning and he starts to get snuggly. He’s going to sleep, I think. I adjust him so that my arm won’t get all pins-and-needles in 5 minutes. Soon I feel the rhythmic breathing and snotty exhales that indicate that Budgie is getting some much needed rest.
And I need to poop. My morning coffee is hitting me HARD. Deep breath. I try to meditate my poop away. In. Out. In. Out. This is not helping it stay in.
My stomach gurgles. No. Not stomach gurgling. It’s more like my intestines doing their best Immigrant Song impression and screaming to be unleashed upon my toilet.
Maybe I can slide him off of me and onto the floor. I try to shift his weight from my chest to my arms. I’m moving so slowly, even the tortoise would tell me to pick it up already. As I shift his head off of my chest, he stirs. Don’t wake up. Don’t wake up. Don’t wake up. His eyes start to peep. Great.
So I lay him back on my chest. I need to fart. But there’s no way I can put any faith in that fart. The only thing that would be worse than my current situation would be sharting myself with a sleeping baby on top of me.
“What’s wrong, Mom?” Binnybeans peeks away from Peg + Cat long enough to register my agony.
“I gotta poop,” I harshly whisper. I sound angry. I kind of am. At my bowels and my shitty timing.
“Then you should go poop. I go to the bathroom when I need to poop. Don’t have an accident. That’s gross.” She turns around and sings along with Peg + Cat. Their problem might be solved, but mine sure isn’t.
There’s more bowel bellowing. I’ve gotta figure out something. Maybe if I swaddle him a little, he won’t notice if I set him down. I try to tuck the throw blanket around his sprawling body. He’s as snug as he’s going to get.
I start sliding myself off the couch and onto the floor. My underwear rides up. That’s exactly what I need: a giant wedgie while I’m trying NOT to poop. But if I can get myself closer to the floor, it’ll be easier to lay him on the floor.
Lamaze breathing. Hoo hoo hoo hoo. My butt hits the floor and I clench. This is getting urgent. I try to lay down. Maybe I can do a gurney transfer and slide him onto the floor. In order to lay down, I need to scoot away from the couch a little more. More undies up my butt.
I’m about ready to throw him off and race upstairs. I can’t take it anymore. I’m going to poop myself pretty soon.
But if I wake him, I will have to listen to him scream-cough for the rest of the night.
I’m horizontal now. Sliding … sliding … sliding … he’s on the floor! He’s still asleep! I don’t think I have ever gotten up so fast in my life!
“Watch your brother for a few minutes,” I mutter as I race past my daughter.
I take the stairs two at a time. No time to waste.
As soon as my cheeks hit the seat, I hear the worst, most gut wrenching sound in the world. My fears come flooding out.
The baby is crying.