Republished for someone that thought it should have a re-dux…(go figure)
I can tell that I’m FINALLY getting moved in over here at the “mini” farm. I can actually start entertaining the idea of getting back to my blog on a regular basis. You wouldn’t believe the wonderful ideas that I’ve had for blogs lately, but by the time I sit down to start writing, I’ve either forgotten the idea, or I’m just too damn tired to write. But things are really starting to settle down so look for me to be around here at my writing desk more often (whether you like it or not !)
So yesterday I rode with my pal Robbin (who also happens to be one of my bosses) to Ft. Myers. It was a beautiful day. And one that I totally overdressed for. Of course it WAS 50 degrees here in Ocala when I walked out with my sweatshirt on. And I wasn’t taking into account that we were headed south, so by the time we got to Ft.Myers (3 hours later) I was pretty toasty. Didn’t help that I couldn’t take my sweatshirt off because the shirt I had on underneath was a piece of crap, so I had to suffer.
Robbin was busy at the counter in the permitting department and I decided to go use the restroom. It had been 3 hours and a large coffee since I’d left home, and I
had better get there soon or there was going to be an accident NEEDED to go. Now I must set up what happened there with this preface.
I’m pretty sure that I am NOT the only person on the planet that feels this way. But I have spent my entire life just a little uneasy about public restrooms. It’s not the germs, or the filth. Trust me when I say that I’ve had to use the bathroom in some pretty unsavory places. Like the side of the road, because I didn’t want to wake my sleeping son to carry him into a rest area bathroom. Or what’s called a BENJO DITCH in Okinawa, which is just an open ditch that people just stop and “go” in. And of course we’ve all had to lower our standards to go into the creepy, filthy, I’m sure there is a peep-hole in the wall, kind of gas station. I’ve done the drip dry thing. The scratchy paper towel to wipe with thing. The I’m not sure I have a tissue in my purse thing, but it really doesn’t matter because I left the purse in the car thing. And the, I’ll just wait till my husband comes looking for me so I can ask him to bring me my purse so I can look for the tissue thing. But NOTHING bugs me more than being afraid of the sounds that I’m going to make in the public bathroom and thinking someone might hear thing.
All my life, I’ve cringed when going into a public restroom if there is someone else in there. I may be revealing too much here, but it’s safe to say that I’ve done some pretty uncomfortable things in order to not make any noise while I’ve been in a stall and there were other women in the restroom. I’ve flushed the toilet to cover the sound of me peeing. I’ve flushed the toilet to cover the sound of me getting enough toilet paper off the roll. I’ve flushed the toilet if I thought I was going to fart. In fact, I’ve probably wasted WAY more water flushing for no reason, then I’ve actually needed. And why? Because I’m one of those people who get embarrassed for others if they tell a joke that goes flat. Or if they make a “naughty” noise in the bathroom. It’s totally insane, and I get that. But I can’t help it. Sorry.
So, I will do just about anything to avoid making someone else have those kind of thoughts about me. Heaven forbid I walk out of a stall and there’s a woman standing there with this look on her face: And up until yesterday, I wouldn’t have had any idea what to say to someone if they had mentioned any kind of bodily function that I might have just participated in. Yes, yes…I KNOW we all go in there to use the bathroom. I know I know. People have shaken their heads about my unusual phobia of bathroom sounds for many years. But for some reason, I don’t think it’s going to bother me anymore after yesterday. My previous blog told you that my feelings about how the world looks at me have changed. Being this older, wiser, and probably grumpier, soon to be senior person, I’ve decided that I’m not going to worry about how others view me OR my actions. I guess this includes the bathroom issue too. BACK TO THE STORY
So I go into the restroom. There’s a woman at the sink and mirror combing her hair when I come in. We don’t make eye contact as I have “business” that must be taken care of. Did I mention that it was a LARGE cup of coffee. I sit down with relief and just let it flow !!! And it’s one of those times where you wonder how your bladder can hold that much. I go. And I go. And go some more. Finally, when I’m sure that there will be an ark floating by with pairs of animals on it, I get done. Wipe and leave the stall. And the woman is STILL THERE. And it happens. My life of 55 years has culminated in this moment. When someone is actually going to say something about what I’ve just done in the privacy of that bathroom stall. I can see it in her eyes. And she has that “look”. And then she speaks. “Wow, you really had to go didn’t you?”. That’s all it took. Years and years of built up worry, shame, fear, and discomfort all came to a head. What would my response be? I’ll tell you.
I looked her right in the eye, and I said, “Well, I didn’t come in here to square dance”.
I left her staring at my back. I walked out smiling.