A couple days ago my 10-yr-old and 7-yr-old are having this conversation with me about water slides. Our local pool has water slides, and they want to rate them. Which is the best, the fastest, and how would you rank them in order? All this talk of water slides makes the 10-yr-old eager to go back to pool as soon as possible. He really wants to go down the slides with his brother so they can talk about it some more. At my feet, during this conversation, my two toddlers are coloring. My daughter is drawing a picture of her followed by a picture of me. My son is grabbing crayons and moaning about the door being open. He wants it closed. We close the door and he cries. The door open agains and he cries some more. This causes my daughter to start yelling at him to be quiet because she is trying to color.
The thing is, and this is really the thing, I am, at that moment, trying to poop. It is very difficult to do, I am quite frustrated, and I just want to be left alone! If they are in the bathroom and someone comes in it’s the end of the world and someone has to pay. If I accidentally walk in then I am greeted with screams of, “Mom, I am in the bathroom get out!” Even with my newly potty-trained child, she tells me she can’t poop if I watch her. Of course, no one thinks about my bathroom habits and whether or not having multiple conversations and crying children on top of me makes it difficult for me to finish the job.
Why is it kids feel the need to converse with their moms when we are trying to use the bathroom? Is it because we are more on their eye level or is it all the vulnerability of seeing us with our pants down? Maybe they don’t want to talk to you, but they do want to be near you. It is at that moment they need water, food, or a 3rd lunch. There is banging on the door, opening the door, running in and out of the bathroom, and just staring. I asked my daughter once why she always followed me, and she said it was because she liked to watch. Of course, she followed this up with, “Ew, it stinks in here.” No kidding.
At this point I am so used to the open door policy of going to the bathroom I forget to close the door when I am out in public. There are times when I realize the door is open, and for second, I think, “Oh, it doesn’t even matter.” At home I don’t even try to close it anymore. What’s the point? They’ll find me. They always do, and it will stink.