Yup, it's true. Our public library is completely inspirational to my two youngest children.
Do they aspire to being great authors?
Maybe. But, at 2.5 years old and 4 months old, I highly doubt they have given that career route serious consideration.
No, the inspiration to which I am referring falls into a much more "natural" category. And, with all the thoughts that the word "nature" conjures up: earthy, relaxed, comfortable, smelly, somewhat embarrassing for Mom.
**GROSS-OUT ALERT: STOP READING NOW IF YOU HAVE A WEAK STOMACH!**
Two weeks ago, the three of us took a quick walk (5 blocks) over to our library. It was a gorgeous, warm Spring afternoon and we had just enough time to make a quick trip there to read one story, pick out some books to take home, and then walk back home so I could pick up my oldest child from high school. Since I didn't want to lug out our heavy and ancient twin stroller, I clipped the baby's car seat into her single stroller and let my son happily hop along beside me. Mistake #1.
We had a fine walk there, and made it up to the little kids' reading room which was uncharacteristically empty. The baby was sleeping very soundly in her car seat (still attached to the stroller) and my son and I sat in one of their comfy reading chairs to read a quick story. After that, I let my son choose his books to check out while I perused the children's CD collection.
Sounds picturesque, right? I thought so, too, and I was feeling very pat-myself-on-the-back-ish about the whole thing. Well, pride goeth before the fall, as they say.
I realized that we had to hurry to the check-out and walk home quickly in order to be able to pick up my eldest, so I called to my 2 yr old, "OK, buddy, lets take those books home now! Quick, like a bunny!" (see? still being nice at this point!). That's when I noticed two very important things simultaneously:
1) The reading room smelled just like diarrhea, and...
2) My son was walking over to me with a very wide-legged stance.
Bye, Patient and Prideful Mommy! Hello, Irritated and Humiliated Mommy!
Here are some random thoughts that ran through my head at that moment:
I hope the women's bathroom is empty.
I am fairly certain I have his size diapers in my bag.
I am also fairly certain I still have a change of pants for him.
I know I have a full package of wipes with me.
I hope the baby stays asleep.
Mistakes #2, #3, #4.
Of those five thoughts, only numbers 1 and 5 came true. So, what I was left with was a very messy, half-naked toddler and a sleeping baby in an empty bathroom, which also had no paper towels. What to do?
Well, here's the plan -- worthy of the A-team and MacGyver -- I came up with:
1) Try not to get angry at the toddler who most obviously has the stomach flu.
2) Use 3 dry wipes very judiciously to clean up the lower half of his body (yes, the entire lower half).
3) Ditch the pants.
4) Tie my brand-new nursing cover around his waist, apron-style.
5) Have him straddle his sister's car seat and tuck a blanket around him.
6) Pray that he doesn't have another disgusting bout of the green-apple-splatters while he is sitting on top of the car seat.
"So, Mommy, can we check out my books now?"
We did. I was trying to re-gain some of my Good Mommy Points.
And, we high-tailed it the 5 blocks home. The entire way my son was holding onto the handle of the car seat yelling, "Giddy-up, Pony! Yee-haaaaa!".
The. Entire. Way.
That day, I swore I'd never return to the library again. Can you imagine what the Children's Librarian was thinking when she smelled us leave???
But, lo and behold, I took the five youngest kids back to the library yesterday. Lightening doesn't strike twice, right? WRONG!
The baby had a massive blowout.
Lucky for the librarian, I was prepared!