I’ll tell you what love is. l’ll tell you what true, unabashed, I’d-do-anything-for-you love is. True love is sitting crossed legged on the half-bathroom’s cold floor, a pair of poopy underpants to your left and a pair of grungy toddler sneakers to your right.
“I need a hug, Momma,” he whispers and I lean in close. We hold each other and he plants a kiss on my eyebrow. “Will you hold me? I keep trying..?” He asks.
I nod, wrap my arms around his back and stare at the white toilet lid. I find myself here often, and it doesn’t get easier. The Kaiser refuses to go until the inevitable accident explodes out of Thomas the Tank underwear and onto the kitchen floor. And then we sit. He strains; I pray. Now, what I pray for… That depends on the day:
… God, please, please help him go. Lord, seriously, lube it up. The kid’s about to bust a vein.
…Buddha, I’m really trying to stay in the present and all, but I surrounded by shitty underwear, toddler sweat and the stench of my utter failure as a mother.
… Uh, Universe? Yeah. Universe? Lookit, I know we have a no-drinking deal going on, but surely a Bud Light is in order for moments like these. No? Kaaaaaay.
… Jesus? Hey, yeah. I’m on the verge of really losing my mind here on the toilet deal, so how’s about you help the kid help me and I’ll take him to Mass every Sunday. Every other Sunday.
It’s a frustrating process for us. But at the end of the day, I have to think that eventually – with a little Miralax, a heap of encouragement, and few more toilet hugs – we’ll work this out.