Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Treasure Hunting and Toilet Water Showers

Warning:  Do not read this if you're eating or about to eat or thinking about eating.

You have been warned.

I send Zuzu to daycare with cloth diapers.  On the mornings she goes to daycare (she's down from three days a week to two for the summer), I carry clean diapers in her Planet Wise wet bag.  I take out the diapers and put them in her bin under the changing table, and then I hang up the bag nearby.  They stick the dirty diapers in the bag each time they change her (the lining does a sufficient job of holding in any stink when it's zipped shut).

Back in the day when she was on a breastmilk-only diet, I could just unzip the bag, toss the whole thing in the wash, and be done with it.

Now that she is a Big Girl eating Big Girl Food and having Grown Ass Man Poop, each evening she gets home we have to go on what I like to call a "treasure hunt":  unfold each dirty diaper to see which one(s) holds a Grown Ass Man Turd and dump it in the toilet before washing the diapers.

Cloth diapering--it's ultra glamorous.  Don't let anyone tell you differently.

I force David to take turns with me doing the treasure hunt.

Last night was my night to locate the turd.  (I hold my breath the whole time.  I hold my breath for so long I could probably set a world record.  Or I mouth-breathe.  Anything to avoid inhaling through the nostrils.)

We have a sprayer attached to the toilet for spraying out turds.  It's a powerful little sprayer, and you have to hold it low or you end up spraying poo all over the bathroom tile. (Not that that's ever happened to me.  No way.  I would never.)

For some reason when we moved (weeks ago), we never got the sprayer hooked up.  So on daycare nights we'd have to coax the poop from the diaper into the toilet with the help of a wad toilet paper or sometimes just vigorous shaking and/or dipping in the toilet.


That method wasn't all that effective, and after doing a load of diaper laundry that ended up with very clean and very rinsed but STILL RECOGNIZABLE black bean in my washing machine, the sprayer had to be put back into circulation.


David hooked up the sprayer just in time for my treasure hunt, so after locating the turd diaper, I held it low over the toilet, pointed the sprayer at the turd, and pushed the trigger.

And I shot a high-pressure stream of cold water directly into my own face.

Somehow I had completely turned the sprayer around so instead of pointing it at the diaper, I had pointed it directly up at myself.  The good news?  I missed the diaper entirely so the poop wasn't going anywhere.  The bad news?  I had just drenched myself and was still holding a diaper full of shit.

It was so shocking that I didn't even register HOW it happened, so it took me a second to realize I was doing this TO MYSELF and I had to LET GO of the trigger.

Also I was mouth-breathing so as not to smell poop, so some of the water went into my mouth.

After the split-second in which I realized what was happening but still hadn't fully processed it, I SCREAMED loudly enough to send David running upstairs with the baby in his arms to see what had happened to me.

Nothing hysterical, mind you.  Just the kind of screaming you do when you're leaning over the toilet and mouth-breathing and NOT expecting a powerful jet of freezing cold water to shoot up from the direction of the toilet and into your face and then a powerful jet of freezing cold water suddenly shoots up from the direction of the toilet, into your open eyes and open mouth and all over your face.

I met David at the top of the stairs, still sputtering, my hair dripping.

Oh, honey, it's nothing.  I just SHOWERED myself with TOILET WATER.  And some of it went in MY MOUTH.  No big deal.

David pointed out that it's not technically toilet water--it just comes out of the wall pipe.

(The same pipe that sends water into the toilet.)

Whatever.  It it FELT like toilet water.

Also I was still holding on to the turd-filled diaper.  Which still had to be rinsed and flushed.  Gag.  I managed to do that without soaking myself or covering the entire bathroom in shit, so the story has a happy ending.

The lesson here:  Make sure you know which way the diaper sprayer is pointed.

Also:  I feel that it's important to state here that I still have no regrets about cloth diapering.  We are eleven months in, and when I think about how many diapers we haven't thrown in the landfill, I'm so glad we're doing it.

But, yeah.  It can be really super gross.  Treasure hunts and toilet water showers are the prime examples.


  1. I thought at first the sprayer was turned up too much so when the water hit the turd diaper it sprayed you. That would have been WAY grosser. Also, would her daycare be willing to put liners in her diapers for you? Then you'd hopefully only have to drop the man-turd and liner in the toilet and have less spraying to do. My favorite are Grovia as they are nice and big though Finn still manages to get them wadded up on occasion so he can take a messy shit off to the side of the liner thus defeating the purpose. But when said messy shit rests solely in the liner and doesn't even get on his diaper - I feel like I've won the lottery!

  2. Feeling compelled to comment, even though you don't know me at all. I can't even remember how I found your blog (probably through a friend of a friend of a friend!), but I read your original cloth nappy post months ago, and it convinced me to give it a go with my daughter who is a week or so younger than Caroline. And I am someone who used disposables full-time for my first 3 children and vowed never ever to deal with the poo soup of nappy soaking that I imagined using cloth would entail. The night I read your post I ordered my first 6 cloth nappies,, and since then I've built my stash and use them full time in the day (disposable at night). So you can take credit also for saving 8 months worth of daytime disposables in landfill all the way over here in Australia. Yay for the Internet!
    On another note, I met my neighbour today for the first time, and she graciously shared with me that she lost her daughter to still-birth only 6 weeks ago. So devastated for this lady I barely know, and praying that she finds such a supportive community as you have online. Your writing honours Eliza's life and her legacy so so beautifully. It is a privilege to read along. (Hope that's not too creepy.)

  3. LOL!!! i have to tell you, you aren't the only one that has held the sprayer in the wrong direction. :) and i have also sprayed bits of poo of the diaper because the stream was too powerful. nasty!

  4. Is it bad that this really doesn't gross me out that much? My older son has major constipation issues so I've had a front row seat for some "Grown Ass Man Turds", so maybe I'm desensitized? LOL This was hilarious though, thanks for sharing!

  5. I use the Bumgenius on my ten month old too, and I highly recommend Bumkins Flushable Diaper Liners. We actually don't try to flush them, but they make it very easy to just shake off the waste into the trash, without having to use the sprayer (which we also hooked up, but boy is that thing deadly....).

  6. Seriously... You crack me uppp! While I didn't find the post disturbing and unsettling, I did find it freakin funny! :) Hope this makes you feel better! You've saved hundreds of diapers going into the landfill, and you've put a smile on my face today when I so needed it!

  7. Thanks for the laugh... I needed that! Just be thankful the sprayer didn't hit the poop first. Ewww.

  8. Seriously funny stuff. My first thought was, omg, toilet bowl water in the face. But then quickly thought, as David said, it's not actually from the toilet bowl. But still. Gag.

    I so had wished to cloth diaper. I did tons of research, and almost became obsessive (youtubing, and stalking cloth diaper blogs) after Alexander died. I needed SOME sort of hobby...

    But when theo arrived, we had so many pampers boxed up from gifts and relatives...I thought, "what the hell, right? Might as well use them up...". And after changing a gazillion diapers a day, I top my hat to all you cloth diapering folks who cloth diaper in the newborn/infant days of constant poos and pees.

    Maybe one I will. And if I do, I'll surely think of you with toilet bowl water all over your face and hair! Ha!

    Good laugh for today! Thank you!

  9. Gross? Yes.

    But nothing can top the mustard poo on the lap during the faculty meeting.

    I do not miss the diapering days, cloth or disposable. I did love the g diapers personally, because flushing or even disposing of a biodegradable liner with the poo was so much easier. We even had the little biodegradable bags for liner disposal at school and for travel, so we didn't have to bring home the poop. You have a stronger stomach than me.

  10. OMG, so funny (when it happens to someone else!) I just read outloud to Kirk and we both laughed so hard. Oh, and I'm sorry. But thanks for sharing.

  11. Brooke what a hilariously gross moment! You had me in stitches.

  12. Oh my gosh, laughing so hard along with you. The black bean? Been there. How are those things so good for you if you can't even digest them??

    We gave up on cloth with J because he poops like four times a day and we don't have a sprayer. I can commit to two toilet dunks a day. Not four. Who poops four times a day??

  13. I also was not grossed out at all. I wanted to cloth diaper, then I didn't, then I did. After reading your posts, I was able to make the jump at about 5 or 6 months? So we're three months in, and it's totally, totally easy. No diaper sprayer yet...and we may be OK with that!

  14. So. Damn. Funny!! and it's amazing how quickly we learn to deal with the Dark/”Grown Ass Man Turd” side of cloth diapering that no one really tells you about! Also, if liners become an option for you, I've used g diapers flushable liners with their cloth to minimize the funkier parts of the day very successfully. the rice paper liners are softer, but don't always break down well, depending on how modern your plumbing is! thanks for spreading the truth/good word on cloth!

  15. The only thing that would have made this post better would have been pictures...just saying. Lol

  16. Oh Brooke...that is too much! I am sorry to laugh at your unfortunate toilet water shower but, dang, I needed that laugh badly. Thanking you for sharing your adventures in cloth diapering.

  17. When I first installed my sprayer, it also stated on the packaging that it was excellent for feminine cleansing. Ummm, I can almost imagine that spraying ice cold water at your hoo-ha could be almost as alarming as accidentally spraying ice cold water in your face. Just sayin'. I wouldn't recommend trying that either!! ;)

  18. In 6 months those diapers are only going to be stickier, smellier, bigger, and way more disgusting than they already are. I'm kind of jealous that you share this treasure hunt with David. In our house this is strictly a "daddy only" job. Momma says she breast-feeds so I get to do diapers. You probably also don't want to think about all the poop that has bounced off that diaper onto the sprayer and now into your face. Have a great day!

  19. Spray pal. May not have helped THIS situation but it does keep the spray splatter from getting all over the bathroom.