Logically, I know this isn’t a big deal, it doesn’t really mean anything, blah blah. But the other parts of me (the non-logical ones) may or may not be freaking out. To keep myself from having a complete existential crisis, I need a distraction. Today’s distraction method of choice will be making a list. Without further ado, I present:
29 THINGS I HAVE LEARNED IN 29 YEARS:
a list in 29 days
Day One: Lessons learned in childhood
1. Do not cut your own bangs. It will not end well.
…especially if you are 10 years old. Fifth grade is definitely old enough to know what scissors can do to your hair, but did that stop me? No, sir! It starts out innocently enough: just the tiniest trim. But then you have to make sure the sides are even, and before you know it your bangs are inch long sprigs standing straight up with no hope of ever covering your forehead. Oh yeah, and it’s right before picture day. Luckily, your sister is 5 years old so you can blame her for this unfortunate mishap. (Did people actually believe that story?)
You would think after ‘the 5th grade bangs incident’ I would learn my lesson. Wrong again! There were a handful of times in high school and college where I would trim my bangs myself. The results weren’t quite as traumatic, but of course never as good as what someone in a salon could do. (P.S. It’s pretty embarrassing when you tell your hairstylist that you trimmed your own bangs and her response is “I can see that”.)
2. Just ask where the bathroom is – it’s less embarrassing than the alternative.
I was a shy kid – painfully shy. I spoke to teachers in school as little as possible. When I was in the first or second grade, I spent almost every single recess playing with my friend, Ashley. Ashley was an idea person. She decided what the activity/game would be, and the rest of us would play it. One afternoon (in the middle of what I can only assume was an awesome game), I realized that I needed to pee. The teachers were all the way on the other side of the playground and for some reason I didn’t want to walk up to them by myself to ask if I could go inside. In my memory, the walk to the teachers was SO FAR.
I asked Ashley to walk with me to the teacher’s playground post. She said no, opting to continue the game instead. I can’t blame her – it is not normal for a 6 or 7 year old to need an escort to walk across the playground – so, I pushed my full bladder from my mind and just kept playing. I don’t know how long this went on, but soon the need to relieve myself outweighed my fear of approaching the teachers. I struck out on my own, and when I reached the slide I realized I no longer had to pee. Yes folks, I had peed my pants.
Now I was REALLY afraid to talk to the teachers! So, I walked my soggy bottom back to my friends and Ashley’s game. I was panicking! What should I do? I was way too old to be having accidents at school. I confided in Ashley what had happened. Suddenly, the teachers were blowing the whistle. Recess was over. I was so mortified. Ashley’s solution (remember, I said she was an idea person): walk behind me in line so that no one would see my pee pants. Lucky for us, the school day was almost over plus my grandmother was picking me up which saved me from the shame of riding the bus in my current state. With Ashley’s help, I made it back to the classroom with no one the wiser and sneakily positioned my backpack to cover my bum. I left school that day without incident.
I wish I could say this was the only pee pants incident in my childhood – but alas, it takes me some time to learn. Most others involved being at a slumber and laughing too hard. However, almost every one that I can remember could have been solved by just asking where the bathroom is!
Also learned: It is a true friend who comes to your aid when you have wet your pants and smell like urine.