It started out like any other day.
But, most of the bad days do. They creep up on you, disguising themselves as good days, until they get everything in position to attack your household with their bad day messes and screaming children trauma.
I was sitting on the couch yesterday when it happened. Emma was in time-out for something, I cannot even remember what, and baby Drew was playing happily on his activity mat on the floor. The twins were climbing all over me and we were having fun.
The moment that the bad day started is easy to pinpoint. Grant was sitting on one side of me, and Ben on the other. I was talking to Grant and turned to look at Ben, and saw him squishing some play-dough between his fingers. "Why does he have play-dough on the white couch?" I asked myself. That thought was quickly followed by "and when did we get play-dough the color of poop?"
It wasn't play-dough.
I picked Ben up and found his pull-up overflowing up the back. There was poop squished into the back of the couch. There was poop squished into the cushion of the couch. I found poop smeared up the backside of my right leg. That really worried me, since I had been sitting on the couch for a few minutes, and had to wonder where I was when I was smeared with poop, and how long ago that had been.
I found squish marks of poop on the floor every few inches from the kitchen into the living room. I passed it all by and took Ben into the bathroom to get cleaned up. I brought Grant with me as well, so that he would not play in the poop and make an even bigger mess.
I started the shower and washed off my leg, then started filling the bathtub. I removed Ben's pull up and started using baby wipes to get the majority of the mess off him before I threw him in the tub.
As I had Ben leaning face first against my leg, scrubbing his backside, I was trying to look at the positives. You know, so that I didn't cry/scream/throw things and have a fit. Hey, at least this is going to make a good blog post! I thought to myself. But then, the natural effects of the running water took their toll on Ben.
And he peed all over my leg. The very same leg that I had just scrubbed poop off of.
Utterly defeated, I finished cleaning him up, while his urine streamed down my leg, pooling between my toes and onto the bath rug. I took some deep breaths and just kept going.
Grant was behind me, asking if he could take a bath, too. At least it will keep him out of the way, I though as I quickly stripped him down and removed his pull-up.
A word of advice. Always check the pull-up before you remove it. Because sometimes, the poop will cling to the child just long enough for you to remove the pull-up cleanly, only to fall to the floor with a splat when the child takes a step.
Because there was certainly not enough poop on the floor already.
I remember yelling something, but I cannot remember what. Don't worry, it was not profane, although those words were floating around in my head. I grabbed TP, scooped up the poop pile, threw it in the toilet, cleaned up Grant and threw him in the tub and tried really, really hard not to cry.
I went out into the living room to start to tackle the mess out there. And yes, our house really is that small that I can leave the boys in the bathtub and go into the living room and they are still safe. But what greeted me from the living room was not what I expected to see.
You see, Drew has been rolling lately. And in my haste to get the boys into the bathroom, I neglected happy, content, quiet baby Drew on his activity mat. I returned to find happy, content, quiet baby Drew had rolled across the poop-covered living room carpet and had his head about two inches from a pile of poop.
I scooped him up, checked him over and put him in the exersaucer, where he could not move. Of course, he wanted to play on the floor, so he started to cry. I suddenly remembered that my sister-in-law took our jointly-owned carpet cleaner two days ago, and tried super-duper hard not to join Drew in his wailing cries of pity. I cleaned up the couch and the floor, checking on the boys every minute and a half, and listening to Drew scream as he could see me moving around but I would not pick him up.
I finally got everything clean. I changed my shirt, just in case, scrubbed the boys down and got them out of the tub.
Baby Drew was still screaming. Not just an I'm lonely, Mama come pick me up! scream, but more like You are ignoring me! Someone call CPS! This is baby abuse and I am demanding you pick me up right now! Did you hear me? RIGHT NOW!
All this time, Emma was still in her room from whatever thing she had done wrong before the day turned bad. I felt bad leaving her in there that long, but at least she was quiet, and she was out of the way.
As I left the bathroom I told the kids not to go in there, and for good measure, locked it from the inside and shut the door. that was not a mess I needed to tackle right then and there, so I left it alone.
After I got everyone fed and down for naps, I bleached the entire bathroom, took off all the couch cushions and washed them, and finished ridding the house of the offensive smell of lingering poop.
The worst part is, I know that continuing to potty train will create more piles of poop on the floor. I think I need the carpet cleaner back.