We’re having more scatological issues in my house. Yes, dear readers, the shit hit the fan, yesterday. Not literally, but bad things are happening and I’m not sure I’m going to be able to ride out this excremental tsunami with my sanity intact.
For the past few weeks, Jaxson (8 year old, barely verbal autistic boy, for those of you NOT following my life like a rabid All My Children or American Idol fan) is having more toileting issues.
I thought all the feces drama was behind us when he took that first ca-ca on the toilet, and even recorded it on his digital camera for posterity! Yes, brotha’ I’ve got it on film! Filmmaking is his newest obsession and no less than fourteen digital video cameras have paid for it with their lives. One after the other have met their demise as Jaxson runs around the house capturing his tomfoolery digitally before he plays it back for his own amusement, eventually putting the camera in the toilet or under the running tap.
So here’s how it looks on film:
The long wait as his plaintive stare takes up the entire video screen, while the camera sits on the edge of the bathroom sink, facing him. The look of revelation in his widened eyes as he peeks from the camera to the contents of the bowl beneath him, then back to the camera with his brow furrowed, wondering if what he’s just done is something he might want to repeat. Him wiping himself with a look of disgust before tossing the soiled toilet paper and standing to pull up his undies before flushing.
“Gotcha!” he proudly exclaims as the turd disappears into oblivion with a loud flush.
Life was good! I finally had two autistic kids who were wearing real underwear! Poop has played such a large role in my life, I was glad to see it go; like killing off an unneeded member of a TV series once they’ve worn out their welcome, and then some.
Nicolette Sheridan on Desperate Housewives comes to mind. (I never watch the show, I’m just assuming.)
Anyway, things were going well… until smells started emanating from Jax’s bedroom. Smells that only belong in the restroom, and even then aren’t particularly welcome. But I’ve got strategically placed Renuzit Air Fresheners® in my bathrooms, six in each ( okay, that’s a wild exaggeration…but not by much) so at least there’s a faint aroma of powdery-fresh-scent hovering over the oppressive stench of shit.
But I panic when I begin to smell those ‘aromas’ in other rooms in the house. I start getting Vietnam-esque flashbacks of Jax tossing dirty Pull-Ups® over the fence as daily gifts to a former neighbor, or cleaning the ass of my twelve year old with Aloe-Scented Luvs Baby-Wipes®, or hours of sitting on the bathroom floor, sobbing, trying to get either of them to evacuate.
So, here I am, smelling those smells, not only when Jax flies by me on the way to the refrigerator, but every time I pass his room in the hallway. A quick inspection of the room leaves me with no answers, so as he runs past me again, I grab Jaxson’s arm, tuck a finger behind the waistband of his Fruit of the Loom® undies and take a peek inside.
Yep. Houston we’ve got a problem, all right. He’s not wiping well. Or, should I say, not at all, based on the golf-ball sized chuck of excrement I notice flattened between his ass-cheeks.
The other egregious violation of my sanity that has been popping up is the fact that I’m finding dirty underwear all over the house. Under the sink, pushed into the back of closets, in his underwear drawer spending a little too much quality time with the CLEAN skivvies. Behind the TV in the living room, under my bathroom cabinet…I’m like a human bloodhound, sniffing my way to a trail of stinky underwear.
For two weeks this has been happening.
My assumption, up till now, was that Jax was having problems wiping, so he’d put on another pair, and then, when he realized there were skid marks, or skid pebbles on said undies, he’d remove them and fetch a clean pair. Whereby, the underwear itself is becoming sort of a faux toilet tissue; cleaning off a bit more of the ca-ca each time he changes them.
I am literally buried under a four foot mound of dirty underwear and have taken to washing a load of undies a day. Three boys live in my house. Three penises to trickle pee-pee on my toilet seat, three booty-holes to leave skid marks. That’s us: Three Men and a Lady. Well this lady had patience once upon a time, but that patience is worn threadbare-thin.
So, back to yesterday—yes I know I’m waxing and waning, but give a girl a break! Everywhere I go, it smells like SHIT!
So after I drop the kids off at school—while Jaxson complains the entire way that his tummy hurts and I ignore him, thinking he’s manipulating his way into staying home because it’s the first day back from their spring break—and as soon as I get home, I put on my latex gloves, grab some plastic bags and assume the position: Scat Detective.
As God is my witness, I will get to the bottom of the newest smells wafting from Jaxson’s room. I check the closet. Nope. Check his drawers, nope. I pull all the sheets and covers off his bed and wash them. Nope, still smells like shit.
God Help Me! I fall to my knees and sob for a little while, as Sugar, my Australian shepherd licks away my salty tears. “Where is it? Where is the smell coming from?”
The dog has no answers for me, so, I decide the room has just soaked up Jaxson’s daily funk. I will scrub the walls, clean the carpet, bleach the entire room down. I start to sing as I begin to move the furniture out of the room, “I’m gonna scrub, scrub, scrub that stench right outa’—”
At first I wasn’t sure what the clump of brown substance stuck to the ceiling was. As my eyes trailed downward, I saw numerous small, brown smudges at the seam where the walls meet in the corner of his room. This smudge-trail leads downward to where Jaxson’s TV sat atop a caddie-cornered dresser.
A tiny whiff of discernment blew across my subconscious, but as the human brain is wont to do when something so horrific, so painful, so unbelievably disconcerting is about to sink in, I turned a blind neuron and wouldn’t allow my sub-conscious to pass the information along to my conscious mind.
There is no way. There is no way what I think is happening, is actually happening. If it is, I am turning in my keys now. It’s over. Mom has officially left the building and I’m going on permanent sabbatical.
I held my breath as I leaned over to peek behind the television, not because it smelled, but because I had that feeling you get as you sit in a packed theater and the only African-American cast member in the horror movie is slowly making their way down the stairway to the darkened basement, alone.
“No!” the audience screams! “Don’t do it. Do not open that door!”
And then I saw it. Or, saw…them. A pile of brown nuggets in various sizes on the carpet behind the dresser. I looked up at the faint smudges on the wall, and back down to the carpet.
Flinging poo. He’d been flinging poo. Which meant the poo would have been in his hands first, a prospect I am still unable to process. From his hand, it would have to sail through the air, hit the wall, and then fall into the convenient space behind the TV/dresser in the corner of the room.
This newest series of unfortunate events will most likely cause me to go back on the Lexapro I was so fond of—until the co-pay went up to fifty bucks and I decided feeding the kids was more important than my mental health.
Obviously we’re not over the scatological hump in my house. It seems, either Jax is saving his excremental offerings for a later day, or he doesn’t like sitting on the toilet. I have no idea what’s going on in his mind, because verbally he can’t tell me.
So, he’s using his actions to show me he’s got an issue. Now, it’s up to me to figure out the ‘why’ of the ‘what’.
Why is he flinging poo? Why did he have a hysterical meltdown when I found him—later that day after I spent hours cleaning up the shit behind his TV—holding a handful of shit, just about to hide it under his Spider Man chair?
Why did he freak out when my husband held him down and I cleaned his ass with wipes, then forced him to wash his hands with anti-bacterial soap?
It’s always about the why, and I’m getting tired. I need a vacation. I need to have a hot, steamy affair with someone who will do exactly what I say at any given moment and not talk back, scream, or fling poo. (If I’m listing my wants, I feel I should be specific, here. God’s got a wicked sense of humor.)
I need control because my house is quickly spinning out of it.
I need a nap.
I need a pedicure.
I need a maid.
I need someone to deliver me a mocha latte every morning and say to me, “Have a good day” and mean it.
I need to take a bath without being interrupted.
I need a full day without worry, without anxiety, without the stench of poo.
I need a house that consistently smells fresh as a daisy. Apparently, I want to exist within the confines of a feminine hygiene commercial.
Call me crazy, but I don’t think that’s asking too much.