Being a mother is gross work; but I’m happy to say it’s been a lot less gross for me than it’s been for my husband. Let me just knock on wood or something right now and say that there are so many things that have happened to my husband that have yet to happen to me, and each one of them is more disgusting than the last. And that’s not to say I haven’t had my fair share of gross parenting moments; I absolutely have. But it’s something that we all experience. Things I swore I would never do, things I just knew would make me vomit, things that are so gross they make you cringe; they’re what moms deal with every single day and we have to shrug them off and keep moving. It happens to the best of us – though thankfully our kids feel that the most disgusting things should be saved for daddy (and that is why I think my kids might be the coolest). So what jobs do parents have that make us just die a little on the inside by deal, shrug and move on outside?
Being Vomited On
When someone gags, I gag. I cannot stand vomit and it makes me want to cry. I still, even with four kids, cannot clean up child vomit without gagging and feeling as if I have to run from the room every 15 seconds or so to breathe since I’ve been holding my breath the entire time. Being vomited on, in my house, is grounds for an immediate shower for all involved parties as soon as the mess is cleaned up. There is no walking around with dirty clothes for me or anyone around here.
Being Pooped On
Thankfully, this is a daddy issue and not a mommy issue in this house. Apparently my kids know that if they get their poop on mommy, she will cry. But daddy, well, game on. The up the back, gross, disgusting mess that sometimes happens always seems to happen when someone is sleeping on daddy and that’s all right with me.
Being Peed On
With three girls and a boy, we are fortunate we’ve never experienced this. Our little man never went through the phase where he urinated on us when we changed his diaper so we are good to go with this one. But once on a flight home from California to Florida our oldest daughter (who was turning one the week after) did urinate so much at once that it leaked through her diaper and onto her clothes and all over my husband’s lap.
We all do it. There was a time I watched my mom grab a booger out of my infant nephew’s nose and I gagged, told her she was disgusting and actually shuddered. She laughed and said that when I have kids of my own, it’ll be different. I still would NEVER touch a booger in the nose of another child, but my own kids’….well, yes, it’s happened. A lot.
Remove Important Items from Dirty Diapers
One time my daughter grabbed my keys from on top of the entryway table before we realized she was even tall enough to reach. She was, to my thoughts, reading the book I’d given her by the basket of toys over there. While I prepped her lunch in the kitchen, I heard the sound of keys falling. I ran into the foyer and found her on the floor with all my keys all over the place and the ball to my Tiffany & Co. keychain had been removed from the U-shaped ring and it was nowhere to be found. A poison control phone call later and we spent the next 18 hours closely examining and using disposable utensils to sort through her feces until we found that ball. We threw it away, because ew, but we wanted to make sure it was out of her little body.
Smell Anything and Everything
Is that chocolate or something else on someone’s shirt? This is a very important question because 1 – if it’s not chocolate, it’s something really disgusting and totally needs to be changed. And 2, if it is chocolate, someone found my stash and heads are about to roll. So you smell it. And you kind of don’t really know which one you’re hoping to find.
Cleaning Wall Art
It doesn’t sound disgusting; just annoying, right? The kids colored on the wall – annoying, but not gross. Unless they colored on the wall with the ‘deposit’ your four-year-old made in the potty and forgot to flush. So now you have a toilet, walls, 1-year-old twins and everything in between to clean from their ‘wall art’ fun.
Changed Diapers in the Car
It never fails; you get somewhere and someone has a dirty diaper and you have to lay them down in the backseat and clean their little behinds in the middle of a parking lot. It’s gross, and you’ve got things you never wanted to see in places too close to your floors and it’s just nasty. But you do it, in record time, and you move on.
Cut Dirty Clothes off a Baby
Baby clothes are cheap; and that’s why a lot of them have to be cut right off. Sometimes when the mess is a mess, you have to give up the thought that you’re taking something over the head of a child and you have to cut that stuff right off to save yourself and the baby and an even bigger mess.
Gave Birth in Front of 30 People
Some people don’t; but I apparently always do. I’m laid-back and easy going, I like to joke around and we have a good time in the delivery room (What? We are fun people and epidural is good stuff) and so you don’t even think twice about the fact that you’re giving birth to a daughter in front of your mom, husband, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, your sleeping 3-year-old, your aunt, your best friend, your doctor, three nurses, 15 student nurses and the new nurse from your doctor’s office that just adores you and wants to be there to see if you are really wearing heels on the delivery table (apparently there was a bet going on that I would).
It was almost strange when we had to give birth in the operating room to the twins three years later and it was just the doctor, six nurses, the man with the magic epidural wand and my husband. But the nurse did take our phones and capture a ton of pictures of the moment I birthed two beautiful babies and the doctor even posed in his best supermodel pose, then told me that was the most ridiculously easy twin birth he’d ever encountered and that he literally did no work and that I didn’t even break a sweat.
As a mom, you just don’t care anymore.
Photo by Brent Stirton/Getty Images