Transition #372: I Regretfully Decline All Bathroom Invitations

Written by Emily


I used to like going to the powder room as a pair. I willingly invited friends to join me there. I was foolish not to bask in public restroom private time, but it used to be the perfect place to debrief during a dinner date. I was all, “heck yeah” if a friend summoned me to the restroom. It was the must-stop locale to get the deets on the latest gossip not ripe for sharing with the entire group.

I remember three of us huddling in a tiny stall once–by choice–crammed shoulder to shoulder to discuss the future of a relationship. No one actually used the bathroom for its intended purpose, as far as I can recall. The guy in question was a keeper, by the way. No better place to weigh pros and cons than hovering above a toilet.

I experimented with many a terrible lipstick shade in public restrooms. I primped and primed, retouched and redid.

If I actually had to use the facility, I squatted and read the terrible, terrible prose on the stall wall out loud to my friends in the next stall over. I wondered if Jeff hearted Carolyn back. I really wondered.

Public restrooms were never my favorite place, but they were not the bane of my existence they are now.

Now, I would much prefer to use the public restroom alone if I have to use the restroom at all, and I’d rather say “no thanks” to a plea to join anyone in the loo.

Instead I cram into bathroom stalls with no less than one other person, often two others, sometimes three. But rather than coming face-to-face with the dinner date 411, I’m face-to-face with bare bottoms. Instead of juicy gossip, my stallmates make announcements I’d rather no one hears like the texture of their poop or worse…the texture of mine–well, if I pooped, which, of course, I don’t. It’s when there’s a full house, that my little cherubs want to discuss the intricacies of mommy’s underwear or why boys pee standing up or where exactly babies come out of mommies.

There’s no time for primping, but there’s just enough time for wrestling, which is what I need to do to get 4 pairs of hands cleaned and dried before Chloe spins so fast she falls to the floor, before Sylvie does her spontaneous downward dog, and before Noah picks up the balled up paper towels on the floor to shoot them into the trash can.

Lipstick? Forget about it. Retouching? Nope. I just want to get out of there unscathed and not smelling worse than when I went in.

Categories: Emily

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8 replies

  1. Greatness! But, when mine son was old enough (he thought) to go to the boys room by himself – well that just brought on a whole new level of anxiety! So, enjoy cramming all of y’all into a stall just a bit longer!

    • I’ll try to remember that! Thanks for the perspective 🙂 I’m not ready to let Noah loose in the men’s room. I have no idea what he would do in there! I’m sure there’d be very little flushing and no hand washing :/

  2. My sister and I were convinced our boys had to “mark” every bathroom they were in the vicinity of. What we dreaded they seemed to relish. Glad those days are long past.

  3. A pony tail holder is high fashion these days. But all those little ones are keepers. 🙂

  4. Hysterical! About the 2nd part w/doing the toilet time w/kids in tow! The 1st part was honestly foreign to me, since I never had those experiences w/girlfriends. It seems as I think about it that I
    had a pretty boring teenage/young adult life and missed out on a lot of fun times – was it because I was so serious, being the 1st child who “mothered” my siblings, or because I went directly from high school to working full-time as a secretary – I wonder . . . . .

  5. Same with my son…”While I appreciate your cleanup gusto, please reserve it for our living room floor and not the public bathroom!!”

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