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Rated: 13+ · Monologue · Comedy · #2309822
A memorable incident at school
Toilet training is a big deal for all parents. I mean, it’s costly. Not just the nappies themselves, but the wipes and those vanilla smelling nappy sacks. Big bulky changing bags that smack off the back of your legs every time you head out the door. The ‘what’s that smell” challenge which occasionally results in an chunky brown index finger as you take a peek inside to find a ‘to the brim’ filled nappy.

Changing nappies takes time out your busy day. It can be fascinating (is that vegetable, mineral or crayon?) But its messy and its stinky and frankly a part of parenthood that most people would happily take a pass on.

So after 3 or 4 or 5 years, parents give a great sigh of relief when the nappies and the pull-ups are few and far between. Your fear of having to stop on the layby of the A9 in the pouring rain and create a toilet seat out of your circled arms to allow your 4 years old to drop a log in the long grass is thankfully temporary. Weeks. Maybe a few months.

When it’s all finally done, It’s great. It’s a deal.

So imagine what it’s like for a family with a kid with additional needs. Age three passes by and the nappies persist. Then four, then five….six…. seven… eight. All of those challenges still exist, in fact more. This kid, who may be strong and independent in all sorts of other ways, still needs that constant support in the most private of matters. It’s not what they want. It’s not what you want for them. So when we get a kid in our school that is showing a sign of positive toilet success. It’s a deal.

It’s a big deal.

Jamie was maybe 10 or 11 when we were giving it a big punt. If I had been told Jamie was going to be a toilet success story just a year before, I would have suggested that a one line pop at the Thunderball would have been a better gamble. His poo ran like the River Nile, all day, every day. But here he was a year later, with no pads. And he was acing it!

However there came a day where we had a little dent in his ultimate success.

The class were working well enough. Unusually quiet. Unusually calm. Myself and the three staff, wandering about the tables helping with work here and there. The first indication of the emerging incident was when I saw Miss Welsh’s head pop up. It was like a meercat spotting an eagle. Her nose curled up and her face said what her voice didn’t need to, “I smell poo.”

Code brown.

I came across the classroom to her position and had a sniff myself. Poo? No. Not just poo. There was something else. Sweet and sickly and distinctive. More than poo. Less than poo. However you like to think of it.

Who was in the vicinity? There were 3 pupils here. Two were in pads but were not known to have bowel movements in school (weirdly that is actually a ‘thing’). And then there was Jamie. Jamie who had claimed that he had not felt well at snack time as he ate a tub of blueberries, and I had dismissed completely:

“Really? Well that’s a shame Jamie. Finish up your blueberries now, it’s time to go out to play”.
Jamie was definitely looking a little pale, a little sheepish. Jamie seemed to have the distinctive face of someone who had trusted his flatulence and had been harshly betrayed.

Mrs Welsh and I quickly flanked Jamie like two bouncers and quietly instructed him to stand up. Right enough, the back of his trousers indicated that this ‘Code Brown’ was actually a ‘Code Watery Beige.’

Now, that part of the story was not exactly unusual. Both in Special Schools and indeed in the lower stages of primary, shit happens. Quite a lot of shit happens. But the next part was memorably unique.

Thin, watery diarrhoea fell right out of poor Jamies trouser leg on the floor. And (here is the unusual bit) so did blueberries. Perfect undigested blueberries that had been eaten not two hours before. They rolled across the classroom floor.
Mrs Welsh and I quickly managed the situation. While ordering the remining staff to hold the fort, we quickly whisked Jamie out of class, down the long corridor, across the next long corridor (there are a lot of corridors) and into the showering room.

Gloves. Wipes. Aprons. Hand gel. Blueberries. Towels. Soap. Wipes. Blueberries. Brush and pan. Mop. Hand Gel. Lost property clothing box. Wipes.

He was encouraged to purge the next fart safely in the toilet. Then we helped him shower and got him clean clothes. His parents were phoned as the sweet tang definitely indicated illness not accident. There was a messy 15 minutes with some difficulty getting the shower produce, including blueberries, down the plug hole. Then Mrs Welsh and I walked poor Jamie to the office to await his mum. As we headed back to class, we quietly congratulated each other on how well and how quickly we managed the situation.

On the way back to class, we noticed Mr McLean, the Depute Head was storming down the corridor looking gloomy. He had been irritable as hell recently and to be perfectly honest, was grating on my nerves. We nodded politely as we passed and he stopped us in our tracks. “I am fed up with this!” He grumped holding out a fist, “Fed up!”

“”What’s the problem?” I shrugged, not actually that interested in another rant, and keen to get back to class.

“I just don’t understand why people can’t just keep this school tidy. I’m finding these everywhere up the corridor.”

And there, in his ungloved, outstretched hand was a pile of perfectly formed, undigested blueberries.

I took delight in educating him about our morning.
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