Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Something Went Right For a Change!

I have been fighting the Battle of the Bathroom Sink for a couple of months now. Bright Eyes developed a fascination with the bathroom sink and an affinity for playing with water. At every possible opportunity, she makes a beeline for that sink. Sometimes she takes her tea set in there; sometimes she gets out her bath toys to play with; sometimes she just uses whatever happens to be on the bathroom counter.

One time, while i was tied up in another room, she pulled the stopper to fill up the sink and decided to "take a bath." She sat on the counter and put her feet in the sink. After washing her feet, she plunged her head into the water to wash her hair. The trouble is that she left the facet running full speed for all of this. The water just kept pouring into that sink until it overflowed. It ran over the edge of the counter and onto the floor. After a few inches of standing water collected in the floor, it seeped through the ceiling of the room below and rained water into that room as well.

After what had previously been an annoyance turned into a major flooding episode, we laid down the law on the sink. She was forbidden to enter the bathroom without express written consent. It worked for a little while, until like many things that parents take an extreme stance on, life moved on and other misbehaviors required our attention. We got distracted from enforcing the sink rules and she slowly eased back into her old ways.

Another of her favorite things to do is "clean the bathroom" by getting a wad of toilet paper and wetting it to wipe the counter/mirror. She can't reach the paper towels in the kitchen, which we typically use for cleaning, so she substituted the next best paper product that she had access to. Unfortunately, toilet paper doesn't hold up to water in the same way that paper towels do. As a result, lots of little wads of wet toilet paper washed down the sink. After one particular episode, the sink was never the same. It started draining very slowly. I tried a couple of different remedies, ranging from vinegar (my go-to solution for all life's problems) to Drain-O. Nothing helped. 

We lived with a slow-draining bathroom sink for a while. I was too swamped with life to do anything not related to basic survival. It always bugged me, but i simply didn't have time to fool with it.

But then Bright Eyes got into trouble with the sink AGAIN, and it quit draining altogether. Once the problem escalated from Moderate Inconvenience to Urgently Needs Intervention Now, i cleared my schedule and sprung into action. 

I needed to remove the stopper from the drain. I am extremely unskilled in the household repairs department, so i did not have the know-how to tackle the project. Thank goodness we live in the age of Youtube; a quick seven minute video made me an instant expert! Youtube told me that i had to lie on my back and stick my head inside the bathroom cabinet. At first i thought, "Oh my this is more than i bargained for!" Thankfully it turned out to be very simple. I felt like a professional plumber lying there under that sink. It was so easy to unhook the thingamajig that holds the stopper in place. 

I started removing the stopper from the drain and HOLY COW IT WAS DISGUSTING. There was gunk dating back to 1975 inside that drain. I was unprepared for the huge glob of nastiness that came out. After the nasty part was over, the sink was like new! It drained faster than it had in a year. 

I was SO pleased with myself, i was practically giddy. Although it was an extremely gross task, it was the quickest & easiest solution to a problem that i'd experienced in a long, long time. It was so endlessly satisfying to take on something i didn't know how to do and conquer it so completely.

Having something go right is extremely atypical of my life the past few months, because of this:

Allow me to introduce Dimples.

Dimples joined us on November 13, 2014 with quite a bit of fanfare. How she entered the world is a story for another day. She's a beautiful little critter with a huge smile. Despite how sweet she is, life with her has been pretty difficult.

The trouble with new babies is that there's so much gosh-darn uncertainty. Even when you've already had a couple and you think it should be old hat, they have a way of taking any confidence you feel and throwing it out the window. Those early weeks are the worst. You haven't yet collected enough data to be able to predict what the baby is up to. Every cry is a lengthy decision tree. Is she hungry? Is she sleepy? Does she need a diaper change? Is she gassy? Does her tummy hurt? Is she reacting to something I ate? Is she too cold? Did the pacifier fall out?

It goes on and on and on.

Because of my background in Emergency Medicine and Intensive Care, I do actually enjoy diagnosing things. It's satisfying to isolate the variables and figure out the cause of a problem. But newborns push the limits of even the most accomplished diagnostician.

Therefore, those first few months make you batty. It's too much insecurity to tackle with too little sleep. Unlike the problem of the bathroom sink, issues with a newborn aren't resolved so quickly. There is no seven minute Youtube video that makes you an instant expert on getting your baby to do life perfectly. You can remedy the source of the crying right now, and at 3am there will be an entirely new problem to fix. And at 6am. And 10.

Its exhausting.

So praise the Lord for that sink! It was nice to know that I can in fact do something right every now and then. Getting my baby to sleep is a loosing battle, but at least my sink drains like a champ.

Thanks for reading! Tune in next time for "Something Went Horribly, Horribly Wrong."

1 comment:

  1. So glad you're back to sharing your writing! I would love to here Dimple's birth story someday!