As a long distance Grandmother, I had managed to avoid diaper duty up until my oldest grandsons were five (grandson #1), and two (grandson #2).  Never having children of my own, I thought this a good scheme since I have no diapering experience—but all good things…. I decided to take the two to a movie.  The boys sat, staring at the big screen, with hands and mouths occupied by copious amounts of popcorn, orange pop, and candy. 


Movie over and gathering our belongings, I hear, “Poopie.”  It comes from Grandson #2.

Afraid I am hearing correctly, I repeat, “Poopie?”

Squinching his little face, he is pointing to the Women’s bathroom; how could a two-year old know that? “Poopie.”


Rationalizing that his desire for an amateur performing this job was equal to mine, I suggest we wait until we get home so ‘Mommy’ can change his diaper; but he’s still squinching, so I’m guessing that’s a no.


His brother taking pity on a layperson helps, “He wants you to change his diaper.” 

I’m grinning.  Gee Thanks.


With close proximity to a stall, and claiming one wall of the restroom, I strip him.  Poopie!  Well I guess so!  I’m not good with bad smells, and even when it’s your own grandson- THAT is a bad smell.  I really, really, really am trying to suppress any gagging sounds; it feels unseemly, as his grandmother.  I turn to one side, take a single last clean breath, and hold.


Grasping the two-year-old with one hand, and snaking a leg over into the stall, I am reeling-in reams of toilet paper.  Grandson #1, choking down leftover candy, swinging from leg to leg is enjoying the entire affair.  Trying not to look or breath, I am wiping blindly at areas most suspect. 


Finally, job done, I triumphantly throw the final wad of paper into the toilet, I smile at Ben.  “There!” 

“Poopie.”  He seems unconvinced.

Wondering, “do you need to poop more,” pointing to the toilet? 

Running into the stall, but by no means taking a seat, he commences pulling toilet paper—bringing it to me.  “Poopie!”

Always the helper, Grandson #1 pointing,  “There is more down there.”


And there was; tearing open the diaper bag, understanding that this super-sized poopie required more than simple toilet paper, I find a Ziploc with wet things inside, and begin again. 


Interrupting, the five-year-old is motioning downward.   “Wipe down!” 

Wipe down?  Looking down I see nothing.  I look back at Grandson #1 once more.

Nodding. “Wipe down.” 


Ok, why the heck not.  I am wiping down.  I can’t tell the difference, but the boys are smiling, and the instructions have stopped.  Agreeing we’re finished, and leaving the theater, I have a sense of pride in meeting this challenge, and we all lived to tell about it; experiencing yet another of life’s small joys of grandmother-hood, and learning from it. 


No matter how old we are, we can learn; yes—next time, Blockbuster—and ‘Mom’ in the next room.