Sunday, June 03, 2007

And now for a word about bodily functions

I think I’ve mentioned that I love my job. I’m just about certain that I was meant for it and it was meant for me. There are one or two little drawbacks to teaching preschool though.

Preschoolers, for whatever reason (perhaps because they haven’t built up all the resistance of adults or perhaps because they are compelled to touch a vast deal more objects on a daily basis) are life size germ magnets.

Oh yes, we sterilize left and right, discourage mouthing and cheer hand washing as if it were a professional sport. And I’m sure we manage to kill off a great many germs and wash a good deal more down the sink. Still those germs hang on for dear life and sometimes even manage to track me down even outside of school.

Recently I saw a student who had been absent for two days, but who surely must have been healthy and fit, since I ran into her leaving after school activities. Nancy!” I exclaimed as she bounded toward me with a big hug, “Where have you been? We’ve missed you!” I’M SICK!” she exclaimed, unburying her face from my side which I suddenly noticed was thick with bright red rash. Peeling her arms from around me I found them also covered. Oh well. Since her face was affected, at least I know it wasn’t scabies.

The other drawback to teaching preschool is spending countless hours discussing toileting issues. I have had no less than SIX people stop to talk to me about one boy’s bowel movements in a SINGLE DAY. And although the sheer number of conversations seems absurd, it really doesn’t bother me during school hours and while on school grounds.

However, just the other day I ran into one of those six people outside of school and thought, “Please, please, PLEASE don’t start a conversation with me about Joey’s poop right now!” She managed to dance around the subject quite deftly though, and still get her point across, without ever mentioning any of the various words for poop.

But, at least that was during daylight hours during the week. There are times I particularly don’t want to talk bowel movements. One Friday night last month I’m rushing around doing my normal “I-waited-until-the-last-minute-to-get-ready-frantic
I’m waiting on phone calls from about five or six different people so we can nail down last minute plans.

Phone rings. I grab for it thinking, I suppose, what people generally think while trying to herd cats: “Oh good! That will be so and so, who will have talked to such and such and as soon as I know blah blah blah, I’ll be able to call and tell this, that, and the other person!"

With much anticipation, I pick up the phone only to find out it is a teacher from my school, calling to discuss…Yep!
You guessed it: Joey’s poop. I adore Joey. He’s cute and has big giant eyes and a sweet, capturing smile. I enjoyed having him in my class. I loved watching him learn and grow throughout the year. Under NO circumstances do I EVER want to talk about his bodily functions on a Friday night!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just, y’know…friendly advice in case it also happens to hold true for your child's teacher:

  • Monday to Friday before 4:30 pm, fantastic time for talking whatever child related bodily functions float your boat.
  • Talking poop on a happening Friday night: totally out of bounds.


  1. What about a 36-year-old man's bodily functions?


    Nice blog!

  2. I'm going to rule that one as fair game for Friday night discussion fodder. :-) :-) :-)

  3. thanks for a good giggle.

  4. Very cute post today. I can truly relate to this since I was a pre-school teacher for many years.

  5. LOL. I was a preschool teacher for years I can relate. I tell people I have potty trained more people in my life than they could dream of. And when push comes to shove with my husband I never fail to mention that I have changed more diapers in my life time than he will ever have to with our 3 kids. Gets em everytime!

  6. When you said you blogged about poop, I raced right over to read it...and then I had to poop.

  7. So what was wrong with Joey's poop that it was the talk of the town? ooops, sorry it's after 4:30pm lol

  8. It wasn't so much what was wrong with it so much as his refusal and/or inability to deposit it into the proper receptacle. :-0 :-0 :-0

  9. ewww
    Thanks for claryfing that. I kept thinking about Joey today :/

  10. LOL!! Yeah, I can tell from the way my hubby talks about his that it'll be a while before our son stops giving his graphic descriptions :)

  11. Poop and boogers, my favorites, but I live for the kidstandingonthechangingtablesneezingdirectlyinyourface kind of days...YUMMY! Always wanted to be showered in boogers, you just haven't lived!!!!

    I can definitely relate, we have 11 2 years old on our attendance.

  12. lol-thanks for always making me laugh. ;)

  13. OMG, I am sitting here at work dying laughing at your "poop" story! I am so glad I read this on a funky Monday morning, weird that "poop" put me in a great mood, LOL!!!!

  14. I've been there! LOL I was a preschool teacher years ago. Your blog is great!

  15. your witty way of writing has me cracking up! LOVE IT! I feel this way about some adults I work with, LOL!

  16. This reminds me of the banter between the Otolaryngologist and Orthopedic surgeons while I was assisting in trauma yesterday... They were bickering about who had the more glamourous job, and the Otolaryngologist insisted that there was nothing more lovely than sucking boogers out of people's sinuses.


  17. Haha very often bodily functions are a funny topic of conversation to some and a horrifying thought to the others.

    Apparently it can be both for you. And I can see why!

  18. Ick ick ick on the boogers! Gotta say they bother me more than the poop and puke put together...

    I like what Barbara Kingsolver said, I *think* it was in Animal Dreams & *think* the way it went was: "The human body is a temple of nastiness". Yeah, definitely both. :-)