Sometimes, I wonder what happened to my life.
As a younger person, I had a lot of big ideas and dreams. My interests were varied and many. As time has passed and my responsibilities have changed, I find that my focus in life is a bit more, well, focused.
Somehow, my whole life seems to revolve around the toilet. Specifically, it swirls (ha ha, swirls, get it?) around the people in my life using the toilet. For example, my daughter is disabled, and she is not potty trained. This is a major goal in my life. I mean, my daughter using the toilet has taken the place of stuff like global warming and world peace up there on the list of priorities. She likes to sit on her potty chair, but she doesn’t actually do anything.
*****An aside: my son came into the kitchen after watching some show where the mother was a secret agent, and he asked me, “Mom, are you a secret agent?” I quipped “Yes–my code name is Buttwiper One.” Sadly, he is an almost-teenager, and my razor-sharp wit was wasted on him. All I got were rolled eyes and a head shake. Kids.*****
Also, I take care of my sister, who is also disabled and in a wheelchair. She does use the toilet, but she has to be put on there (by me), and just lately she’s been having a little trouble, so fifty times a day I ask her, “Do you need to use the bathroom?” Before we leave to go anywhere, we have to wait for her to use the bathroom. Plus I have to make sure my daughter has a fresh diaper on. Oh, and I need to make sure the aging dog has been out to relieve himself before we leave, and when we get up, and before we go to bed at night.
Oh, and I check my daughter through the night to make sure she isn’t laying in a wet diaper.
To add to the mix, The Grandfather had some serious trouble with a UTI last year. Not to be overly dramatic, but he was probably as near to death as he’s ever been. Anyway, I find myself slightly preoccupied with whether or not he is able to pee. I don’t actually have the nerve to ask, but I keep a sharp eye on his habits.
That’s another thing. I’m a lurker. I lurk outside the bathroom door a lot. Both my sister and my daughter are quite distracted by anyone hanging around the bathroom while they are, you know, in there, so I lurk. I’m quite sneaky. I slip my house shoes off at the end of the hall so the swisssht swisssht doesn’t betray my clandestine mission. I carefully avoid the creaky board about halfway down, then stand there, outside the door, breathing carefully through my mouth so my slight sinus troubles don’t betray me.
It’s about this time that the realization hits me. What happened to me? How did my life come to this? I can see that high-school-senior-version of myself on that stupid video we made, and I can vaguely remember all of the stupid things I said I would be doing when I was old. Never once do I remember saying I would be obsessed with other people’s bathroom habits.
Oh well. What can I say? To toss out a cliché, it’s a dirty job but somebody has to do it. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to pee.