If there is one thing you should know about patients with Colitis and Crohn’s it’s that a lot of our time is spent in the bathroom. For instance, when I was sick and flaring up, I was in the bathroom on an average, 12 times a day. With my J-Pouch, it’s about 4-6 on a good day. On a bad day…well you get the picture. I’m in the bathroom a lot.
How does that work with a child, you might ask? Well, when they are younger it’s easy. I always had a pack & play set up with a few toys or books that I could just drop him in when I needed to run to the bathroom. I always had the ipod set to play or the television on Nick Jr. for my IBD emergencies. As he got older and could crawl out of the pack & play, I usually had to keep him in the bathroom with me…gross I know. But my bathroom was near my walk in closet (when we lived in Texas) so I would leave toys in our closet, but him there and close the door slightly with music playing while I was going through, what felt like death, in my bathroom. Here’s another little tidbit about Crohn’s & Colitis. It’s more than just frequent trips, it’s the most painful experience you will ever have next to having a baby. And I’ve had a baby, and I can tell you that my flare ups were more painful than my contractions. It felt like someone was going over my back with a rake, my stomach cramped and burned and someone was stabbing me on my left side. And if I tried to hold it, the pain would bring me to tears before I actually just went on myself. So the next time someone with colitis tells you they need to take the day off…trust me, it’s more than an achy stomach. TMI? maybe. Reality? Totally. Now you see why I get slightly annoyed with people who complain of the occasional nausea. But I digress…Jax…closet…toddler…bathroom…yes.
Okay, so yes as he got older it got harder. BUT once he hit like 3, it actually wasn’t too bad because I could literally sit him down with a book, game, iPad or a movie and run to the restroom. Grant it by the time he was three and I had a Jpouch, so the urge wasn’t as bad, but it still requires immediate attention. It almost felt like it was back to the days of infancy, when he could be easily entertained while I went to the bathroom. But every now and again, especially in the evening when he and the dog have been separated for the day, I hear hooligan activities taking over my house. By hooligan activities I mean I hear a giggling squealing preschooler’s size 12.5 shoe running past the bathroom door, followed by the paws of an overweight half blind staffordshire terrier scratching at the carpet in full pursuit. They run this little track of the house that they have created, all the while I’m screaming from the bathroom! “Hey! Hey! Stop that running! Hey! Do you hear me?! That’s it! You’re both in trouble!” But I know that they know that they have at least two more minutes of unsupervised activities.
Well one day, this very thing happened while I was in the bathroom. But all of a sudden in the middle of Jax squealing from delight, BamBam breathing heavy from exhaustion and me screaming pointless threats I hear a THUD and the bathroom door shakes. And then:
Jax: (in a hushed voice) Oh no! Bam! Bam! Are you okay?
Me: What’s going on out there?
Jax: (in a hushed voice) uh oh! Bam! huwee, get up, Bam. Shh…come on, huwee before we get in trwouble.
And then I heard someone straining…well not someone, it was Jax. And it sounded like he was trying to pick something heavy. Heavy…like HIS ACCOMPLICE!
Jax: (in a hushed strained voice) You have to get up Bam or we’re not gonna be able to watch tv tonight. We are gonna get in trwouble. Come on. Shhh….get up!
Me: Jax…what’s going on?
Jax: Uh, Nofing! Nofing Mommy!
Jax: (in a hushed voice) good gwief Bam, get up!
Then the weight was lifted off the door and the house fell silent. When I came out of the bathroom, both my son and the dog were no where to be found. I walked all the way to the kitchen and that’s where I found them. They were seated crouched on the floor both looking like they had stolen something! Before I could say anything…
Jax: Hi! We didn’t do anyfing!