The scene is the children's museum.
The toddler is happily playing in the water room. It’s loud. There’s a cacophony of splashes as simple machines and delighted children pour and squirt what I’m sure is the purest mountain drinking water.
You have seven minutes left on your parking.
The baby, snug in the ergo, is looking around the room quizzically, his mouth slightly agape, drowsy from a nap upon your bosoms.
A grandmother remarks how funny your toddler looks with a coffee cup drawn on her face and you explain that, at the face painting station, she did not want to be a “cat nose” as per usual, but insisted on a cup.
Then you feel it.
From within the baby.
And you remember that his last poop was last night. The ergo rumbles with yet another tiny but productive fart.
You try to encourage your toddler to leave the room. You bribe her with stamps. You implore her that her brother needs a diaper. She does not want to leave. Why would she? What’s in it for ME, she seems to ask as she ignores you and moves onto a station that seems to be for racing rubber ducks.
Finally, with a combination of bribery and flattery, you coax her out of the room, make her stand under the dryer for a minute, and then lead her, still mostly wet, to the stamp station, side stepping a toddler having a tantrum face down on the ground. You smile at the frazzled mother and tell her, “Everyone lies on the floor at the children’s museum at some point.” But really, you’re just hoping your toddler doesn’t choose this moment to join him.
You make it to the stamp station. Methodically she tattoos her arm with the fairy stamp and then, miraculously, allows you to take her hand and exit the museum.
She, for the first time ever, crosses the parking lot while holding your hand and without complaint, and lets you buckle her into the car seat, all while the baby begins to feel the effects of his rumblings. The sun blinds him and he begins to thrash in the ergo as you hand the toddler a book and get the spare clothes from your backpack.
You have two minutes left on your parking.
And anyway, it is far too late. By the time you strip away the sweaty ergo you see the telltale orange stain. It has gone through the diaper, through the baby pants, through your sweatshirt, through your undershirt, and onto your skin.
The baby howls as you peel off his soaked pants and wriggle him out of his onesie. Wipe at the ready, you remove the tape of the diaper.
It is epic. It is front to back. It is in every tiny baby fold. It completely coats his baby boy genitalia.
Your “one and done” wipe is not enough. Wipe after wipe you remove the watery milk poop from every nook and cranny.
“He’s crying.” The toddler remarks.
“YEAH!” You yell over the yowl.
“He not in his car seat.” Bossy toddler remarks.
“I know. I’m changing his diaper.”
“I’m in MY car seat!” Just the facts.
“You’re being very patient, thank you.”
“I spilled water on my bagina.”
“Ok…You can have clean clothes at home.”
Finally, the baby is clean enough. He begins to wiggle happily, letting the cool autumn air dry his nether regions. You fear for the fire hose and quickly diaper him and put on the fresh onesie.
Baby goes into the car seat.
“He has a DUCK on his shirt.” She exclaims.
“Yeah he got a new shirt.”
“Fun at museum!”