Some days, you just have to throw up your hands.

Yesterday was “one of those days” for me. You know the kind I’m talking about – we all have them from time to time and they can really throw you off your game. Mine began early with a set alarm that was never turned on starting my day in a late panicked rush and continued with me sending The Kid off to camp prepared for a field trip that wasn’t scheduled for another 2 days, then a smashed windshield (dump truck threw a rock), and thus the day continued on an all-too-familiar path.

I carefully considered stopping at a local coffee shop to buy a decent cup of coffee to help kick-start the day back on track. I did end up getting one, but the outcome possibilities weren’t appealing considering the already volatile morning and the prospect of introducing scalding hot liquids. At least I wasn’t wearing white.

There were no issues with the coffee (maybe that was the turning point) and, for the most part, things calmed by early afternoon. I was grateful and reminded myself of all the things that could have gone much worse. I started counting the good things that happened instead of the bad – sort of a mind over matter way of trying to turn things around. Still, it’s days like these that remind me of a time when a cascade of unfortunate events tumbled down on me at the most inconvenient of times. Not even Erma Bombeck could come up with this stuff. Real life and parenthood strike again!

Some background to start. When The Kid was fully potty trained, we had some fairly typical hiccups as she settled into the new diaper-less routine. Being as “full of personality” as she is, she also had some unique hang-ups we had to address. For example, (to put this as delicately and non-offensively as possible) it is indeed acceptable for an individual to engage in multiple “transactions” when in the restroom. Functions 1 and 2 do not need to be separate visits from each other. (How she physically managed this one is beyond me – I always thought some “transactions” were inextricably linked to others.) We also learned quickly that, as she got older, other people had more influence on her diet and she would need to take some responsibility for what she ate and the effects. Specifically, bananas. More specifically, how many bananas are acceptable for consumption in one day lest she endure the resulting effects of exceeding that limit.

We had spent a few days with The Kid being extremely and increasingly uncomfortable. Apparently, 2-3 bananas a day for several days in a row was too many and the effects were long lasting. There were countless trips to the bathroom and aside from a pained and crying toddler, there was no favorable result. I would go in with her to soothe and coach, hoping for progress. Each failed attempt was followed by something I thought might help – raisins, plums, prunes, more fluids. All to no avail.

Until that one night.

Days of waiting came to the ultimate climax as I awoke around 3am to whimpers then cries from The Kid’s bathroom. I sprang to my feet and ran to comfort her. She was right where I expected, sitting on the toddler seat atop the toilet, tears streaming down her cheeks. I sat next to her on the step-stool and attempted to comfort her through what can only be compared to child birth. (I’m trying to keep this tasteful – trust me when I say “childbirth” is an accurate representation.)

It was in the midst of this most difficult time for her that I realized my nose was bleeding. And not just a little annoyance, but a raging flood not even close to controlled using the single tissue remaining in the bathroom. Springtime can be hard on my allergies and the sudden increase in my blood pressure was probably not helpful. I quickly darted to my bathroom and grabbed a box of tissues to gain control of myself.

With that problem solved, I quickly returned to find The Kid had also finished her business and was headed back to bed. I praised her for being so brave and tucked her back in to go to sleep. I headed back to my bathroom to finish cleaning up and replace the box of tissues when I heard more crying. I darted into the hall only to find The Kid standing in her doorway. Apparently, she had stuck to her single “transaction” rule during the excitement and didn’t make it back to the bathroom when the urge hit. She had just peed on the floor in the hall.

I stripped her of the soiled clothes and took her into the bathroom to finish the “transaction” while I proceeded to clean up the hall. I heard the toilet flush followed by that telltale toddler “Uh-Oh!” which immediately translated in my mind into an overflowed toilet.

I finished cleaning her up, put her in some clean pajamas, and ushered her back to bed then headed to the basement to find the plunger. I came back upstairs to clear the toilet – something that absolutely could NOT wait until morning, lest she attempt to flush again before I got there. (I’m certainly not cleaning that out of the carpet so we’d just have to move and I hate packing.)

With the toilet fixed, I took stock of the 15 minutes worth of preceding events noting that The Kid was no longer constipated, she was in new pj’s, the hall carpet had been cleaned, the toilet was fixed, my sinus issue was resolved and maybe, just maybe, now I could go back to bed and get enough sleep to be functional at work the next day. As I turned off all the lights and walked into my bedroom, DH quickly proclaimed “WAIT! The cat threw up and I don’t know where!

I don’t recall the slew of profanities that followed, nor did I stop to investigate the cat’s contribution to the night’s fiasco. I understood his intention was to prevent me from stepping on a “land mine,” but that job would just have to wait until morning.

On those days when I’m sure things just can’t get any worse, I will always be reminded of this story. Because I know for a fact that cat vomit could be the tipping point to any series of catastrophes I may be attempting to juggle.

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