If you’ve known me for a while, you know that I can be a little… particular sometimes. I like clean things. I used to be a little obsessive about keeping my hands clean, but I’ve relaxed a lot over the last ten years or so.

A couple years ago, a friend told me that I’d relax my hygiene rules once I had a kid to take care of. You know, kids eat off the floor and stick their hands in the dirtiest… Anyway, Shannon Wood, this story is for you.

Friday afternoon, during a free play period for one of our younger classes (3-4 year olds), I was sitting on the floor between some girls playing with pots and dishes and a group of boys making “guns” out of plastic building blocks. Gender stereotypes aside, I was having fun playing with the kids, my participation going back and forth between the two groups.

This particular classroom has a restroom in the actual classroom, so I didn’t think too much of it when I caught a whiff of something that smelled like dirty diaper, especially because I was only a few feet from the door. As I was sitting there playing for a few minutes though, I was less and less convinced that the smell was coming from the restroom.

I asked the boy on my left if he needed to use the restroom, and he said it was the girl on my right, who also said she didn’t need to use the toilet. Slightly confused, I looked around a little more closely and discovered a small piece of poo on the floor near me about the size of a sunflower seed.

I grabbed a tissue, quickly picked it up, and asked my assistant if she knew what was up. She instantly knew which student it had come from, and took the girl I’d asked earlier into the restroom.

As it turns out, she’d messed her pants but continued playing, and it had worked its way out of her pants.

Hoping to keep the problem as contained as possible, I inspected that whole side of the classroom, but didn’t find any other untouched pieces. I did find one that had been rather effectively spread on the bottom of a plastic doctor kit next to where I was sitting. This disturbed me, because I was not interested in rolling around in some kid’s poo, whether it be on my clothing or skin.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t so lucky. I found a few strong smears along my outer left leg from when I’d been sitting with my legs crossed.

I don’t know exactly what words would describe how I felt. This was my first class of the day, and I had a parents’ observation in a few hours. But really, that was a secondary concern for me right after “I have poo stripes on my pants. I have freaking POO STRIPES on my PANTS.”

But I couldn’t just abandon my class, obviously. So I got out the hand sanitizer and cleaned up the floor as much as I could. I tried to put it out of my mind as much as I could. We had a drawing exercise we did after play time was over. And during a short break after that class, I went home as quickly as I could. (There’s one nice thing about riding a bicycle instead of driving a car- you can stand up to avoid getting poo on the seat should you need to do so.)

Disaster averted, I went back to school with clean pants.

My takeaway lesson is that I can handle the stuff like that that I know I’ll have to deal with around kids, be they mine or someone else’s.

But seriously? If you can avoid it, don’t sit in someone else’s poo.

One Response to “Aww, crap”
  1. Ha ha… poo stripe pants! That’s what everyone is going to call you now. 😉

Leave a Reply