Peeing Solo

Lawrence Whittemore / Foter

A lot of people replied to my last post. It’s nice to know that wanting to be alone is something that I’m, well, not alone in.

A significant percentage of people suggested the loo as someplace to go to be alone. I hate to break it to you, but after two toddlers and various pets, peeing alone is not the norm.

The kids are older now, but there were years of having bodily functions witnessed by wide-eyed little humans. First of all, what do you do when you’re the sole childcare provider and you know that leaving the little darlings alone for even thirty seconds of emptying one’s bladder means you may come back to a burning house, a limb lopped off, or something else equally unpleasant? (You think I jest? I do not, sir or madam. Toddlers are ambulatory chaos machines.) Plus, they were fascinated, and that fascination only grew as they became potty-trained. The Little Prince, a decade old now, still enjoys making various bodily noises and waiting for reactions.

I guess he always will.

But that’s nothing compared to cats. For some reason, every cat I have ever owned will decide–for months–that they must witness the Small Room Ritual. Various strategies will be employed, from yowling and stretching a paw under the door, to sliding between my ankles as I step inside, or streaking through the rapidly-closing door and scolding me if a whisker gets caught. With that done, the cat will invariably sit and observe with bright-eyed interest. The kind of interest they give to, for example, small wriggling bits of prey.

If nothing else inspires performance anxiety, being observed thusly by a clawed and fanged animal who will probably be the first to eat your face should you expire alone and unmourned will. And then, they suddenly quit doing it, leaving one even uneasier…until the next time they decide they absolutely must witness said performance again. In case, you know, it’s changed or something? I don’t know.

And…that’s nothing, compared to the dog. Miss B’s cold wet nose is practically attached to my knees all day, and God help both of us should I dare to close the door while performing an evacuation of any type. She has, after much moaning, learned to leave me alone while showering–mostly, I suspect, because she hates being dragged into the shower and washed, because afterward she can’t smell herself and it’s like being blind, OH THE DRAMA AND THE HEADSHAKING AND THE RACING AROUND THE HOUSE RUBBING ON THINGS. But the five to ten minutes spent trying to convince her not to cram herself through the door just can’t be spent when I have, so to speak, business to conduct. And the forlorn wailing outside the door should I manage to sneak into the Small Ritual Room by myself has to be heard to be believed.

I think she’s afraid the flush might drag me with it, and she’ll have to herd the cat with nobody watching for the rest of the day.

Anyway. Peeing alone rarely happens, and the loo is really not the sanctuary it could be. Although, with the way things are, I should probably be grateful there’s no goddamn squirrel in my shower, peering at me while I try to…ummm, yeah.

But that’s another blog post.

  • I had a cat who used to INSIST on sitting on my lap. Yes, in the Small Room.

    Thankfully, she understood that claws were Not Allowed, at risk of being dumped in the sink with extreme water prejudice. But still. It was a trial.

    (the current cats will occasionally wander in, but hey, the litter box is there, too. We try to give each other space)

  • martianmooncrab

    Being serenaded by a very anxious kitty while one is in the rain locker.. as if you are getting washed down the drain.

  • Kristin

    We call our small dog Cat-Dog. He follows me everywhere. My so is almost 4, so I’ve convinced him to give me a little bit of privacy, but the dog must follow. He either stares, or tries to climb into my lap. Sometimes I relish being alone and in a clean public bathroom. At least no one follows me into the stall there…

  • Our two dogs have decided that the need for security far outweighs the need for privacy in the bathroom. This becomes very interesting when we have guests over.

  • Aw man. I thought it was going to be about Harrison Ford on the john…

  • Kristina L.

    I do have young childhood recollections of trying to follow my mom into the bathroom…I also remember the gimlet-eyed glare she gave me and the simple, “You do not follow me in here.” That, and locking bathroom doors were probably her saving grace as my brother and I grew up.

    Now, we share a house with only one bathroom and sometimes I poke my head out of the shower to find everyone else in there…except for my parrot. Because she’s too lazy to fly into the bathroom to join the crowd.

  • Corey

    I have to laugh. I have a 10 year old and a 2 year old and the 2 year old is just now beginning to follow me into the bathroom. One night when the hubby was home she tried to run in with me and I shut the door and she threw a tantrum. It was cute from my side of the door but I could tell Hubby was not enjoying it…LOL…yes, between the dog, cat and children, there really is no quiet place a mom can go! Well unless I run to the grocery store and leave the kids and animals home! But what fun is that??