who's the mommy around here anyway?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

potty stop on the major deegan expressway

When Lizzie was pottie training, I had potties everywhere. I had potties next to every toilet and a pottie in the kitchen. The only place I never thought to place a pottie was in the car, and when you think about it, that's probably the one place where you really might want to have one.

You can somehow improvise with your newly-in-undies toddler if there's a real toilet handy, but what do you do when you're cruising along on the thruway and you hear a tiny little voice pipe-up from the back seat, "Mommy, I need to peepee." If there's anything that a parent driving a car dreads to hear, besides, "Are we there yet?" it's any sentence from their child having to do with bodily functions.

I was on my way to grandma's house and I was stuck in traffic on that little slice of Hell in the Bronx otherwise known as the Major Deegan Expressway, of which no known portion is an express. And of course Lizzie had to go. And of course she was newly out of diapers and newly into big-girl undies. And of course I had no pottie. Her cries of discomfort became piteous, so I pulled over onto what little shoulder the Major Deegan offered, climbed over the passenger seat to get out of the car, pulled my little girl out of her car seat, which she'd already considerately unbuckled for me, and looked for a likely spot where she could do her business. I told her to squat down, which she did and fell on her ass, not such a good idea, so I picked her up, dried her tears, and then began to contort myself into what I imagine could only have looked to passersby like Ralph Macchio in a Karate Kid movie as he got into his bizarre position to deliver the winning blow. My arms became disjointed to cradle my daughter so that she'd feel like she was sitting on the toilet, one arm under her legs, one arm behind her back. I squatted down low so she'd be closer to the ground. Then I told her, "Ok, now you can pee." And she did, all over my shoes.

Afterward I dried her off with a tissue and pulled her pants back up, amazed that she hadn't gotten a drop on her while I was leaving pee-sodden footprints everywhere. A CSI would have had a field day with what I was leaving behind. I put her back in her carseat, she considerately buckled herself back in and we were on our way to grandma's house once again. I should have run out to get a pottie to keep in the car, but loving to live dangerously as I did, this was not to be, and I may be exaggerating, but I believe I may have made unscheduled pottie stops in such unlikely spots as the Cross Bronx Expressway, New England and New York State Thruways, New Jersey Turnpike, and many more. I wouldn't suggest this for the faint of heart, but if you're into bungie jumping and skydiving, give it a try - you might like it.