...Shit in the other.
We have all heard the saying at some point in our lives, unfortunately for some of us it does not truly ring home until we are confronted with the predicament of a little boys wants, paired with a hand full of shit.
Bless it, Troy has been a trooper through all of the hell that has been the first couple years of his life. Through the abusive living arrangements with his sperm donor, to the flight for our lives (which said sperm donor denies was necessary- I am apparently crazy and imagined almost being wiped clean from the face of the earth several times), to hiding in a battered woman's shelter for 5 months after he began stalking us (and threatened to kill me), to the further migration south... In all, he has adjusted well. However, I did anticipate some developmental delays as a result of the earliest days of his life- To my surprise, there not only have been none, but he has succeeded in many, many, many attempts to prove his cognitive abilities. Too many.
Troy enjoys taking things apart. If it has a screw in it, he will disassemble it, there seems to be no limitation to the things that he will take apart. Ranging from the ottoman, to his toy trucks and cars... He "found" a screwdriver and removed the screws from the bottom panel of his tonka truck, took out off of the dead batteries and brought them to me. Now, things like that might frighten me, had his older brother not prepared me for such situations to arise with a 30 month old child.
Among other things, Troy has decided that it is time to use the potty, rather than standing astride his big bro, and looking at it while it is in use. It only stands to reason that given the opportunity to lead themselves, all children will self potty learn. Take away the diaper, provide a small seat (to prevent the potentially damaging experience of dipping ones ass into the cold, slippery-wet bowl of doom), show them how to "point it down!!!", and let 'em go. This worked well enough with Damon, that I figured, hey why not try it again. Well, Lo and BEHOLD!!! it worked. Big surprise, now Troy is using the potty, and only wearing diapers at night. He has had but one accident in which he did not recognize the need to visit the porcelain god was immanent, and was faced with two other options- He chose the latter of the two, which was to remove his "unerwear" (rather than making a shit pancake) and squat on the floor in the hallway, producing a very large multicolored Hershey Kiss (we're vegetarians... though there may have been some crayon in there) . The result was my lecturing that we always, always, always go to the potty! we only poop in the potty! this is ewwwy!... Now, in retrospect, I am regretting having given that little speech.
It's about 11:30... Damon announces that he has to poop (like he always does), and treads into the bathroom to make his deposit. Moments later I hear Troy mumbling to Damon that he needs to go pee. Now, I should have heeded this warning, as he does not consistently tell me that he has to go poop, and is just a likely to say he has to pee, only for me to find him mounting the porcelain god moments later. Unfortunately, I did no such thing. I ignored him, because just as often he follows one of the older ones into the bathroom and imitates their need to eliminate, when no such immediate personal need has arisen.
Suddenly I hear a distressed whimper, followed by shrieks of terror, or pain, or I just couldn't tell- I was highly concerned, as it was not at all the normal screechy complaint of a two year old. It was genuine, whatever it was.
I followed the sound of the screams into the bathroom, and was not sure how to react upon entering. Should I laugh, cry, or continue standing here in an utter state of befuddlement? As it would turn out, I had no other option than to react.
Troy was standing in the middle of the room with a large silver remote control car in his left hand, tears streaming down his face, very obviously disturbed by what had just occurred. In his upturned right hand, precariously balanced, rested a very large turd. Damon was still perched on the porcelain god, and Troy toddled over, attempting to dump the shit in the potty behind him. Obviously repulsed by the sight of his oncoming baby brother armed with enough poo to win the shit flinging contest of the year, he swats at him... Now, in this moment I am unsure of what to do, as all I can see is this enormous putrescent tootsie roll being flung at my pretty pumpkin orange walls. As it turns out Troy reacted by tightening his grip, and my concerns were abated, though the result was the release of guttural screams not of terror, but disgust (which I had mistaken in those initial screams).
Standing in the midst of so much shit, I was beginning to feel that a shovel may have been in order but I snapped to my senses- first wiping the residual "Doof" (is food spelled backward) from Damon's rectum, and then turning to troy, I grasped his wrist and attempted to force him to release the turd in to the mouth of the god. Unfortunately he was so disturbed by this incident that he would not release it, and it took a couple of gentle shakes of his wrist to send it soaring into oblivion. As soon as he was free of the chocolate submarine, he sighed deeply with relief and announced that "I not done poopin yet mom". So, up he went onto the appropriately sized cushy seat, and finished his deposit.
Meanwhile I query Damon. He tells me that "Troy didn't want to poop on the floor, he said 'poop goes in a potty' and he squatted down and pooped in his hand. Mom, can you make his not do that again, it was gross." Troy, still comfortably seated, slowly shaking his head, tears streaming down his cheeks, says "Mommy, that's icky tit, icky tit mommy, icky tit. I wash my hands now?"..... "Please?" and so, after cleaning his little chubby cherub rump, I take him to the sink and wash his hands with 1/2 a bottle of antibacterial soap, and then slather him with hand sanitizer... I'm a little OCD.
I learned a valuable lesson about how literal my son is in his absorption and interpretation of instruction. I will never use expressions such as "There's more than one way to skin a cat" or "Want in one hand, shit in the other. See which fills up first" in his presence... lesson learned, and applied.