Gross Adventures in Motherhood: The Penny Edition

December 20, 2012  |  

As a mother I’m used to cleaning dirty diapers, wiping snotty noses and dealing with temper tantrums; however, I have recently been totally grossed out by one of my kids. It all started with a missing penny. After I got done working out, I noticed a spare penny on the ground. I mean to pick it up before one of the toddlers got to it but I forgot and went back to playing Superwoman Mom.

About an hour later, I heard my three-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son arguing downstairs. He kept telling her, “What do you mean you put it in your mouth?” She simply replied, “I swallowed it.” As their voices got progressively louder, I wondered what in the heck they were talking about. All of a sudden it hit me… they were talking about the penny! I jumped off the bed and ran downstairs.

Not knowing what was going on, I asked my husband what were the two kids arguing about. He (oblivious to what was going on) looked at me like I was some mad woman (which I was at this point). I grabbed Lil Mama, opened her mouth and looked for the penny. It wasn’t there. I searched in the last location I saw the penny. It wasn’t there. Upon further questioning I confirmed my worst fears. Ava had swallowed the penny. ( By the way, while all of this was going on, my 2-year-old looked in amazement at the spectacle I was making.)

I was frantic. She wasn’t gasping for air or choking so I did the first thing that came to mind. I made her drink a cup of water while I dialed her pediatrician. While I waited on the doctor to call me back, horrible thoughts raced through my mind. What if she choked? Am I a bad parent? How in the hell did my husband not see all of this going on? Why in the hell did I not just pick up the penny while it was on my mind? When the doctor called me back  she told me (rather calmly) to calm down and gave me instructions.

  1. Give her something solid to eat and see if she has difficulty getting it down.
  2. Pay attention to her if she acts differently.
  3. If she starts coughing bring her to the ER immediately.
  4. Make sure she is her usual active self.
  5. Last but not least, watch her poop and go through it (yuck) and see if the penny passes!

I was fine with all the other ones until number five. What in the world? Yes, I am an experienced mother; however, who in the hell wants to go through feces–never mind it’s your three-year-old daughter’s! For the next 48 hours I had to accompany her to the bathroom and if she pooped I had to scoop it up (with gloves, plastic fork and bag) and feel to see if the penny was there. Every time I was mortified. There were times I almost vomited but I stayed strong for the mission at hand: find the missing penny.

So far I missed her first poop, but every other time I have completed this tedious task. I think the penny passed within the first bathroom visit but just to be on the safe side, I took her to the doctor. Sigh. The things we do for our children.

What’s the grossest part of parenting that you have ever experienced?


Franchesca Lane-Warren is a blogger, freelance writer and business owner behind the widely popular BossyGirl in the City blog. Follow her on Twitter @bossygirl1980 for more tidbits on how she sees motherhood, natural hair, running and life- in general.

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