Thursday, February 24, 2011
Parenthood 2.0 - The Importance of Family Restrooms
So I decided to bring back this series of stories about my journey in the world of parenthood. I hope that my experiences can be a learning experience for some new Dad's...or maybe they will just be good stories to laugh about! Here's what happened...
Before I start this story I should make this declaration. I have a fear of changing diapers in public places. Its not because I am a man and we sometimes look awkward changing diapers and doing other baby care things. For me, it would seem that any time I am required to change a child's diaper in public...it is never a simple process. Things always happen, like not having enough wipes, or no extra diapers. At this point, if a PDC (Public Diaper Change) goes smoothly, then I begin questioning what the day has in store. Anyway, back to the story. A few weeks ago, I was out shopping with Ashley and Kerrington. Our daughter has this love/hate relationship with her car seat. But every time we travel somewhere...without fail she feels the need to "make a stinky" as we would say in our household. So as we are pulling into the parking lot of the Sub-par Craft Store (it is sub-par because it is not Hobby Lobby), my wife quickly handed me the diaper bag and sent me on my way. The words exchanged between us went something like this:
Me: I don't the men's restroom has a changing table.
Ashley: Don't worry just put the changing pad on the floor and change her.
Me: Are you sure about that?
Of course I asked if this was okay (and men will agree with me) if this was my idea...I would have received "THE GLARE." I know ya'll know what I am talking about. I digress, so Kerrington and I make to the back of the store into the restroom waiting area. I walked into the men's restroom to have my fears confirmed...there was no changing table. Upon surveying the floor, it looked clean enough for me to use the changing pad and clean this baby up! Here is where the breakdown begins...
I start to set up shop, only to discover that the changing pad was NOT in the diaper bag. I was at a crossroads. There was no time to go all the way back to the car...the smell was to strong. Then it hit me...I could use the women's restroom.
It was as if there was this invisible shield around me. That no one would see what I was about to do!!! With my man card in place, baby on my hip, & Vera Bradley Diaper bag in hand, I quickly ran into the Women's restroom and straight to the last stall where the changing table was located.
At this point I would love to tell you that changing her diaper was real simple and quick...but that would miss the whole point of the story. Clearly, the only plan I had in place was to get in, change the stinky, and get out. So you can see that this was not going to go well. As I was moving quickly to make the change, it became clear that Kerrington was not finished going to the bathroom...and not only was the mess in the diaper, but it was moving to the wall and to the trash can. I scramble to grab more baby wipes, only to discover there were 4 wipes in the container, and I had already used 3 of them. The paper towels were a good arms length way...however not my arms length. So now the juggling act is in full swing! As I am moving back and forth, I was stopped in my tracks by the sound of the bathroom door swinging open.
In walks "The Golden Girls" needing to use the other 3 stalls. I knew I could not speak to the baby, and of course she was getting fussy because the mess was not getting better. Tapping into my inner black woman's voice, I did my best to comfort the child. It's moments like this that I am thankful that God made me a Tenor. As I was finishing up the stinky mess, I noticed that the golden girls were talking to each other. Side note, do women really talk to each other while in the rest room? Anyway, lady 1 was complaining about her stomach hurting and that she was regretting going to the local Mexican food restaurant. Little did I know that I do, would be regretting her lunch time choice.
To make a long short, Kerrington and I had to wait an additional 10 minutes before we could leave the bathroom. While waiting in that stall, attempting to hold my breath, I decided that I would forever appreciate the gift that is called "The Family Restroom". Especially the big one at the mall!