If Gross is Your Thing…
Having Kids Might be for You
I’ve always been super squeamish. I fainted while getting my ear cartilage pierced at 19. Nurses usually have to shove saltines in my mouth when drawing blood samples. If I hear people describe things involving bloody wounds, use the words “ooze” or “pus”, or mention anything about “slicing” or “puncturing”, I stick my fingers in my ears and sing my LA LA LA song.
Surprisingly, however, I’ve adapted quite well to parenthood, which may be one of the most disgusting jobs ever. No joke. Kids are pretty freaking gross.
If being a Mom required submitting a resumé of prior experience in successfully handling nasty shit, I’d most definitely get the job.
- I’ve caught vomit in my hand — straight from the mouth of my daughter, sitting in the front of a grocery cart — before it hit the floor. Needless to say, after cleaning up with one of those wipes meant to sanitize cart handles, we left immediately. Without groceries.
- I’ve jerked a screaming toddler out of the tub during bathtime after his fart turned out to be a shart. I’ve never been so amused by the look of sheer terror on someone’s face, the utter confusion he clearly felt over why his water was clear one second and brown the next.
- I’ve watched a child throw up onto the dining room table during dinner, cleaned it up, then gave permission for the family to be excused and take their plates to eat in their rooms so as not to make anyone else puke.
- I’ve uncovered sippy cups of curdled milk — age unknown — from underneath car seats…then gagged so badly trying to wash them that I opted for trashing them instead.
- I’ve found a dead, shell-less hermit crab in my son’s bedroom carpet. Like seriously, WTF is that all about. Ok, so yes, my daughter did have a hermit crab, and she would take it out periodically to play (as much as you can possibly play with something that just sits there). But she always did so in her room, then would return it to its cage. Oddly, the crab’s former shell was still in the cage. This one still baffles the holy hell out of me, and ranks up there with the Bermuda Triangle.
- I’ve spit-cleaned waxy ears and crusty noses with my pinky finger before daycare drop-off. I’ve eaten the remains of a breakfast bar that the spit-cleaned child was eating on the way there — lying smooshed in his carseat and probably licked all over — just so it wouldn’t go to waste.
The list of stomach-turning “acts of love” I’ve expressed since becoming a parent is endless. I’ve been peed on, pooped on, puked on, snotted on. I’ve seen and smelled it all. I went from the girl who’d get nauseated at hearing the word moist, to the one who reaches across a restaurant table to grab a booger from a kid’s nose.
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