What advice would I give my children as they begin kindergarten? Pursue what you love? Do unto others? Don’t sweat the small stuff?
No. I have just one piece of advice for them: go to the bathroom. Not just to pee, but to do everything that needs doing. Do it proudly, arm waving in the air for permission. Shout it out! Then come back twenty minutes later, unabashed for the time spent to honor the mysterious ways of that masochist, Nature.
Let’s face it, in the history of elementary school since the stone age, there are just two kinds of kids: those who do and those who don’t even if they might pass out.
Really, it’s a miracle more children don’t die.
I have a friend who didn’t send her child to pre-school, as he couldn’t perform on a public potty. But how long can you hold a child back? Fifth grade? Sixth?
Back in the day, I was a miniature Tom-Cruise-Entering-The-Room-Where-The-Secret-Computer- Chip-Is-Hidden. DUM-dum-dum-dum -DUM-dum-dum-dum …. I crept, spider-like, now-or-never, assured that no one will see me as I had spent the last four hours plotting my move. Then blam -- every time ! – there was Susie Popular, washing her hands primly, feeling good, no awful stretch on her bladder. Oh, Susie would just prance out and play with all her millions of friends, not having to worry about splitting a gut before she gets home.
“Darlings,” I’ll say to my children, “we all do it. So do it at school. It will put you in the right crowd.”
Or, better yet: “Darlings, every day at kindergarten, go proudly into the bathroom and do your business. There are bathroom fairies in there and every time you go, they will grant you your fondest wish. But only if you wash hands after.”
Yet, probably: “Darlings, dearest childdren of my heart -- Whatever you do EAT OR DRINK NOTHING! ESPECIALLY DRINK NOTHING!”
The sad truth, of course, is that there’s nothing I can say. My children come from a long, long line of iron-bladdered stock. It’s in their blood. (If they hold it in long enough, could it really be in their blood?)
You have no idea of what I speak?
So, you’re one of them. You have no idea what I'm writing about. It's okay. I have other friends.
Permission to pee . Really, it’s absurd. Do we need permission for other embarrassing, humiliating bodily functions? “Ma’am, may I grow a pimple now? Right in the middle of my nose, please?”
“Teacher, may I barf up my lunch on my shoes?”
School is hell. Someone should do something about it. But who will be the brave one to bring it up? Surely, not me.
At least, not when anyone else is around.
Causes Diana Holquist Supports