Parenting
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How Bird Poop Traumatized My Children

To say that we’re not big fans of the great outdoors in my family isn’t completely accurate.

John loves to fish and kayak, and if his back would let him, he’d be out on a river or lake every weekend. The man used to make his own fishing lures, fishing pole holder-thingys (it’s a technical term), and own his own kayak. Back in the day, at least.

Aidan and Sean are a little bit like me. They’ll go outside, but only if their friends are out there, Easter eggs need to be found, or if they’re going door-to-door begging for candy trick-or-treating.

Me? I like nature – as seen through a glass window from the inside of a temperature-controlled home. Okay, not totally true. I enjoy walks through the neighborhood and sitting on the beach, under an umbrella. That counts, right?

A random Monday with no school – aka Teacher Workday – and I’d let John use my car. Home and carless. I was also jonesing for a sweet tea from Dunkin Donuts (my near-daily habit). I had a brilliant idea!

Let’s all three walk down the street – a 15 minute walk at most – get ourselves a little something yummy from Dunkin and walk back! The plan had everything – fresh air, movement, and sugary crap that would keep us all high as kites until the pre-dinner sugar crash. I was so proud of myself for thinking of it.

Out we went, striding down the sidewalk with purpose, passing little old ladies, dodging cars. It was great! It was an adventure!

And then…shit happened.

Something splatted against Sean’s hand – and mine, which was firmly holding his because the walk might be an adventure, but a 6 year old darting into oncoming traffic is not.

We both looked down. It was brown. It was white. It was slimy.

It was bird poop. Bird poop, y’all!!

And from the look of it, that bird ate something that didn’t agree with him.

Slime covered Sean’s wrist and forearm, and my fingers, thumb, and (hand to God, I’m not making this up), a spot on my shirt, right at nipple level. Fuck you, birds!

We were in the middle of the sidewalk, the Dunkin Donuts was in sight. We simply had to get there. I would not freak out over bird shit – not in the middle of a sidewalk with the sun steaming up the joint and boob sweat becoming a very real issue. Nor would I vomit all over the place, because I figured that was ten times worse than bird poop.

Sean held his hand up for me with a horrified expression on his face, silently telling me to Do Something. I’m a mom, right? We do the things that need doing, even if and especially when they’re gross.

I wiped his hand on my shirt. Oh yes, I did.

Now I had more than boobie bird poop on my shirt. Great. Just great.

We continued our walk where I promised we would wash our hands the moment we arrived. Sean refused to hold my hand anymore – fear of contamination, I suppose.

At Dunkin Donuts, we cleaned up, ordered our sugary crap that I was no longer enthusiastic about, and quickly made our way home. I was spending too much time too damn close to bird poop.

Aidan, who never felt the slimy touch of bird feces, made me check him everywhere. “Just in case, Mom.”

Aidan: “Oh my God, Mom, when I realized bird dookie was on you and Sean, I was so worried it got on me!” He shuddered in horror. “I just don’t think I could handle it!”

Sean: “Why did my birdie friends POOP on me, Mom? Why? That’s not very nice! I don’t think I can be their friends anymore. Why are we even walking? Walking outside isn’t a good idea.”

Aidan: “I have to agree. I don’t like walking outside, and if we hadn’t come on this walk, I wouldn’t be worried about having bird poop on me. And, ugh, now I’m sweating.”

Sean: “Sweat isn’t cool, Mom.”

Mental sigh. Faster pace. Time to get home. Now.

We arrived home, to everyone’s delight. I slammed my stuff down on the kitchen table and ran to my bedroom.

“I’ll be right back. I need to change my shirt!”

Aidan: “Why, Mom? It’s just bird poop.”

Sean: “Yeah, Mom. It’s fine. It’s just bird poop.”

And that is why we should never go outside again.

who do I crap on today

Michaela Mitchell Visit Website
Storyteller. Writer. Introvert. Mom. Sarcastic, caffeine-fueled, type-A, over-thinker.
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