|Image credit: CDC|
So. You've been warned.
Jordan somehow developed Giardia.
I knew it. When the doctor called and said she was shocked, and that she'd learned something from the whole experience, I felt vindicated. Because I knew it!
See, I had Giardia in Peace Corps. It was 20 years ago, but I recognized it. If you yourself have never had the misfortune, I will tell you that there is this particular malodorous flatulence that accompanies it. I say particular and not particularly, because it's specific.
Yes. So my son began farting and I was like, I know those farts!
I may not be a sommelier or professional perfumer, but I do have a skill, if I may say so myself.
I was kind of reluctant to take him to the doctor just on the basis of his flatulence, but his annual physical was approaching, so timing was perfect. When the doctor asked if I had any concerns I told her about his vile gas, and how I'd like to have stool samples done.
She looked at Jordan for confirmation, and so I said, "Right? You've been having terrible farts?"
And he nodded and said, "Oh, yeah."
She questioned doing so without diarrhea, stomach pain, etc. But I continued to express concern and certainty, and she sent us home with three little vials of liquid and instructions.
"What are we going to do with those, Mama?"
"We're going to put your poop in them."
So I explained how we were going to put some wax paper on the toilet seat and then I would take it off and scoop little pieces of his poop into each of the vials until I got to the red line.
I was afraid he'd be freaked out. Au contraire. He was pretty psyched.
Had I ever done this before? He wanted to know. As if one might need special skills. I assured him I had. When? How? He wanted details. I mentioned a dog with worms. He was super impressed.
I went through the instructions with him.
So the moment of truth arrived, and as luck would have it, we were at home. We could do it right now, today!
"Mama. You're not allowed to poop directly into the container."
"You're right." (Although I'd kind of like to see you try.)
"We're going to use wax paper."
What I hadn't counted on was the interest this would generate. India was not about to be left out. So there I was, following instructions, scooping various particles of poop with tiny little spoons, with an audience. I was kind of surprised Betty didn't join us.
Jordan, still enthroned, said authoritatively, "You're not filling it past the red line, are you?"
"Only to the red line."
"Only to the red line."
Then India, "Mama? Can I try?"
"No, sweetheard. It's better if Mama does it."
"Why is that bottle red?"
Instructions from one side, questions from another. When all I wanted to do was scoop the feces into the little containers as quickly as possible, wash my hands, and get out of the stinky bathroom.
Seemingly impervious, they wanted to converse. What are the people going to do with the poo-poo? How was I going to take it to the doctor? Was I going to put it in my pocket? And why didn't India get to poop in little bottles? No fair that only Jordan got to!
And once again I found myself saying, "It's true. Nothing is fair. Maybe one day we can scoop your poop into little bottles as well."
Are you kidding me with this shit?