the smell of my desperation has become a stench

That old familiar topic

Leta takes piano lessons every Thursday night, and her teacher lives far enough across the city that the most economical use of my time after I drop her off is to run errands. Or sit in the car outside and throw pennies at squirrels. Don’t worry! My aim is terrible.

Last week I had Marlo with me, so I parked the car and she and I took a walk while Leta labored away at the keys inside. However, we had to cut that long walk short because she was starting to do That Thing that toddlers do when they need to go to the bathroom. One toddler’s Thing may be different from another toddler’s Thing, but more than likely you can identify your toddler’s Thing within seconds even though your toddler is certain they are being sneaky about it. I once knew a toddler who would start to sing in a really high-pitched voice thinking that it would distract everyone around him from the fact that he was pooping. No surprise he became known as The Falsetto Pooper.

Marlo lies down and pretends she’s sick. When we are at home she grabs a blanket and crawls up onto the couch and babbles about needing medicine. But last Thursday night we were out on the sidewalk. No couch. No blanket. So she led me by the hand to someone’s porch, had me sit down and demanded that I take off my coat to give to her as a blanket. And then, very much like Chuck gave Cami his fart, she climbed up into my lap and gave me her poop.

So sweet. So fragrant. So convenient. I LOVE changing diapers out in nature! Remember all those times I’ve written about taking the girls camping?!

We walked back to the car and I popped open the back so that I could lay her on a horizontal surface. As I reached for the bag of supplies she looked up at the ceiling of the car and yelled, “We’re in the garage! How’d that happen?!”

And yeah, wow. She had saved up a doozy. I could feel my face melting off as the scent wafted all around like some sinister, silent killer. I was trying to figure out how to dispose of the thing and realized there was no way I could drive it all the way home, no way. The wheels would fall off of the car within a half mile.

What to do… what to do… hm… I wasn’t going to leave it sitting on the curb, that would have been uncivilized. I save all of that behavior for the Internet.

So I looked up and down the street, and what do you know! It was garbage day for that neighborhood! Several houses still had their cans sitting in the street! The Universe was about to use me and that diaper to make someone reconsider their skepticism of karma.

So I wrapped up the dirty diaper inside another clean diaper, took Marlo by the hand and told her to be quiet. We had a mission. Which house? Which can? This one? Yeah? So we chose a victim. Together. I lifted up the top of the can and stared into emptiness. Sad, menacing emptiness. This dirty diaper would be that can’s only item. And when the owners eventually opened the can to toss in an innocent bag of garbage they’d be all DAMMIT! I KNEW I SHOULDN’T HAVE KEYED MY SISTER’S CAR!

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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