Pinworms. So, if you don’t know what they are, it is probably the grossest kid disease that you can imagine. Here’s how they get them…kid touches something that has remnants of poop on it and then puts their hand in their mouth. That particular poop had pinworm eggs in it. These eggs then travel through their system and announce themselves with a fierce itching during the night…on their bum. The itching does not happen just because the eggs are there. Oh no…they itch because that is when the actual worm comes out to lay their eggs. OMG y’all.
Why am I telling you about this disgusting phenomenon? Because, motherhood is gross. And as a mother, your odds of getting worms in your ‘ahem’ are far greater than you think. Why? Because who do you think wipes that little bum? Then, while said child is currently dancing around in the public bathroom stall, touching who knows what, mommy quickly relieves herself too, wipes, pulls up her pants and boom, mommy has now passed on the lovely little worm to herself because she didn’t wash her hands between wiping her kiddo’s arss and then her own. Seriously. Disgusting.
So, I woke up in the middle of the night, you know, when the pinworms come out to play, and my imagination got the better of me. No, I didn’t actually have pinworms and neither did my kid. But I had recently read up on pinworms because a friend’s kiddo did. The horror of having to deal with that along with the unending wondering if that particular itch was in fact a worm laying eggs or really just a vivid imagination playing tricks, was what moved me to talk about the things that make motherhood, in fact, gross.
In no particular order, I give you the top 10 gross things that kids do that we have to deal with.
1. Filthy fingernails. This is not only sick to look at…but with the number of times that a kid puts his hand in his mouth in any given day is beyond disgusting. And, in light of my opening story, it is also a way that they can get pinworms…so there’s that.
2. In addition to putting their filthy hands in their mouths, they also put their mouth on a variety of things in public places. I know, I know…babies learn about their world first by putting things in their mouths. Yeah, yeah. But at some point, they should move beyond this stage. But I’ll be damned if I don’t get through a day without telling my three year old to stop “licking the window in the play area at Chick Fil-A” or that “the dog toy is not, in fact, his toy and to take it out of his mouth.”
3. Snot. It is beyond me how kids can let their noses run with little acknowledgement. And then, when it finally does occur to them that they have fluorescent slime coming out of their nose, they take the back of their hand and wipe it across their face…as if that makes it better. And when asked if they need a Kleenex…they adamantly deny that it is necessary, all while they blow bubbles from their nose. And, of course, when they do accept your offer of a Kleenex, that is the one time (because it only happens once) that you don’t actually have one. I may have resorted to pulling his shirt up and using it instead. Blech.
4. The booger sucker. Ok, so this is not really gross on the kid’s part…but they are involved in it’s use, so I include it in this list. The booger sucker, also known as a bulb syringe, is both amazing and revolting all wrapped up in one little package. Boogers and snot have always made me gag. But for one reason or another, I feel great joy when I am able to nab one from my kid’s nose. I even show him what it looks like because, really, I’m the one who is more amazed at what that things produces. Sometimes I feel like a high five is warranted and I feel great reward when he announces, “that feels better” with a clear sniff. Just a side note, do not ever cut one of these open…it is beyond foul.
5. While we are on the subject of boogers, you know I have to mention kid’s picking their nose. I get it. Many of them can’t blow their nose yet and they hardly care that there is snot flowing from it. But we all know how it feels to have something stuck up in there…so bravo to them for trying to take care of business on their own. Why they don’t choose to take this initiative with simply wiping their nose (with a Kleenex) is beyond me. Alas, it is inevitable that they will eventually realize how handy their index finger can be in retrieving that little gem from their nose. My son will announce to us, anywhere, “I got a bow-ger on my finger” while proudly holding it up for us to take care of. Lovely.
6. Poop. There’s no getting around it. Kids are fascinated by it. I feel fortunate that my child has decided that it is not fit to play with. I have several friends whose kids will dig around in their drawers and smear it on the walls. So, thank you Jesus, my kiddo does not do that. He does, however, find the idea of pooping in the potty revolting. Now, some kids hide when they are filling their pants. My kid, he does it out in the open with no shame. We now refer to it as the “Cedar Park Stoop”…I have no idea why we nicknamed it that…but he will straighten his legs and still out his rear…and it is quite clear what he is up to. When asked, do you need to go potty? He grunts, “nope” and proceeds to unload. When we take him to the restroom to clean up the aftermath, he proclaims, “it’s brown in my underwears!” Then, when I plop the poop into the toilet he then announces, “I pooped in the potty!! I go get ice cream?” Quick sidenote…that’s my fault. I should have known, long before potty training ever began, that my kid does not get the concept of rewards. Praise him all day with words…he gets that…and responds really well to that. But, give him a toy, sticker, treat…anything…because he did something you wanted him to do…and he’s like, “let me see what else these monkeys will do!” He has learned that poop in the potty means he gets a dinosaur and a marshmallow…or a trip for ice cream…but he does not get, or care, that he must actually be the one that poops in the potty. Now that I know that rewards don’t speak to him like they do for other kids…I have to figure out a way to phase that system out. But I digress. So, he watches me dump his dump into the potty and then wash out his unders (which, by the way, is one of the most disgusting things I have ever done!…in fact, I have a few friends who just throw them away instead of resorting to this most foul act) all while I try to calmly repeat to him that he should “let me know that he needs to go potty” and that “poopoo and peepee in his pants is yucky.” Sometimes, while I am feverishly scrubbing out his underwear, I can feel him watching me, with a grin on his face as if to say, “dance, monkey, dance!”
7. On the topic of poop. My son has pooped in the bathtub on numerous occasions. I mean seriously, the toilet is right there…literally inches from the bathtub…but nooooo…he chooses to relieve himself after he is all clean. Then, to top it off, when he does do this, he doesn’t even tell you, he just sits there, with it floating around him, as if it didn’t happen and there is no way you will ever find it…and sometimes, he’ll continue to play. Denial at it’s best. So I yank him out of the tub and put him on the potty while I drain the tub, retrieve the turd, and scrub down all the toys. Sometimes he gets a second bath…other times, well, I just throw on the pajamas and hope there’s no remnants in his hair.
8. Lastly, with regard to poop, I seriously love that my son gives a commentary of his attempts to poop in the potty…that is, when he does try. It doesn’t matter where we are, he will sit there and announce, “I can hear it” (grunt)…”it’s coming”…”I can smell it”. My favorite of all time was after he worked really hard to produce one, he looked at it and proudly said, “awww, look Mommy, it’s a wittle nugget.” Can you imagine if we, as adults, still did this in a public restroom?!
9. Why do kids think it’s appropriate to eat something off the floor? At home is one thing…5 second rule all the way baby. Hell, if it’s not on the floor in the bathroom…go for it. But when we are in public…say a restaurant…and my kiddo emerges from under the booth table with something in his hand…it’s like everything is in slow motion and I’m like, “noooooo…don’t put that in your mou…” Too late. Was it our food? Was it dry? Or, deep breath, was it moist? Seriously, why do kids think they are invincible when it comes to this? They will get sick…it is just a matter of time. And I will blame that sickness on that crumb he found…and ate…off the picnic table, sitting next to the dry bird poop, being swarmed by flies.
10. Finally, why do kids stuff their mouths so full that they can barely chew, let alone breathe. My son has recently decided that he should cram all his food in his mouth in order to show me that his plate is empty. Meanwhile, his food is literally pouring out of his mouth while he slowly tries to maneuver it around to swallow. And when I start to explain to him that he has taken too big of a bite and that next time he should try a smaller one, he leans forward, opens his mouth, and proceeds to spit it all out. At least it lands on his plate, most of the time…but then we all have to sit there and look at his half-chewed banana while we also try to eat. And then, as if that were not gross enough to look at, he will sometimes choose to give it a go again. He picks up the half eaten bite and stuffs it back in his mouth in an attempt to clean his plate. Urp.
So there you have it…motherhood is gross. And this is just the tip of the iceberg folks. I never even mentioned the full inspection my son gives to every floor drain in every public restroom…or that he plays with the swinging door on the wastebasket used for pads and tampons. No, no…motherhood is indeed gross. I dare to say it rivals some of the episodes on the show, Dirtiest Jobs. I would love to see the host, Mike Rowe, manage the boogers, poop, regurgitated food, and overall filth that our little angels produce…all with a smile and full acceptance of the slobbery kisses that we get in return.