She Just Kept Jumping

Let me set the scene for you. The scene of my nightmare.

Poppy was happily jumping in her Jolly Jumper. We've got one that is basically just a harness that hangs from a large spring. We hang it in the doorway of our closet because then she's jumping on carpet and can get more traction (and therefore more bounce) than when she's jumping in the hallway on the hardwood floor.

So! Poppy is happily bouncing and chattering away. I am folding laundry and listening to podcasts and glancing over periodically to make sure she's still happy.

At one point, I looked over to check on her and my brain took a comically long time to take in what was happening. My first thought was "why is Poppy jumping in mud?" My second thought was "where did the mud come from?" And then the realization hit that Poppy was not jumping in mud. She was jumping in poop. On my cream-coloured bedroom carpet.

My brain finally processed the scene and I managed a strangled "holy shit" as I leapt toward her (tangent: nicely done with the apt curse, brain). Poppy looked up at me in surprise and kept happily jumping. When Poppy is in her Jolly Jumper, she has one job to do. She takes her jumping very seriously. So I'm panicking, pleading with her to hold still while I evaluate the scene, and she's in her happy place, jumping in her poop puddle with a giant, shit-eating (too much?) grin on her face.

If you are not familiar with baby poop, let me try to explain this without getting too graphic. We're not talking about solid poop. Poppy has started eating some solid food but her diet is still mainly breastmilk. Her poop is the consistency of peanut butter. Sometimes the velocity of her poop is such that it shoots out the leg holes of her diapers. In a perfect world, she's wearing clothes to help stem the flow and contain the splatter. We do not live in a perfect world. Poppy's bum was covered only by her diaper and her Jolly Jumper harness.

Have you ever put a honey badger baby in or taken one out of a Jolly Jumper harness? It's difficult. It requires complicated maneuvering even when the honey badger baby is not covered in poop and you are not throwing up in your mouth a little bit. I ended up disconnecting the Jolly Jumper harness from the spring and carried the entire thing, with Poppy still trying to jump, directly to the tub.

So I'm hosing Poppy off in the tub when I hear Wolfgang, our sweet but dumb dog, creep into the bedroom. I can't leave Poppy in a tub full of water. I can't take her with me because she's still covered in poop but now she's also dripping wet. No one else is home with me. I tried calling Wolfgang. I tried yelling at Wolfgang. I tried praying. But nothing worked.

I finished giving Poppy her bath. I cleaned the Jolly Jumper harness. I steam-cleaned the carpet. I scrubbed the tub, sink, and every surface I touched during the poopocalypse with disinfectant. I brushed Wolfgang's teeth. I put on a load of poop laundry.

And then I found a pile of dog vomit. Wolfgang had thrown up the baby poop he ate.

And then I burned it all down.

By the time Shawn got home from work (with takeout sushi in hand because I had warned him that something had gone down that had required hours of deep cleaning in place of dinner prep) I was a husk of a woman. "She just kept jumping," was all I could manage to mutter as I washed my hands for the four hundredth time that day.

I can laugh about it now but when teenage Poppy refuses to take out the garbage or unload the dishwasher, you better believe I'll be bringing up the day I cleaned her poop (both fresh and regurgitated) off every surface in our house.