Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Red, White and BOOM!

The 4th of July has to be one of the coolest holidays there is. BBQs, friends, family, and fireworks! Even though my dogs freak out every year during the pops and cracks and explosions they hear from the idiots setting off illegal fireworks in our neighborhood, I still very much enjoy the 4th. Until we leave the house and the anxiety sets in.

It's actually been a few years since we "officially" went to go see a display of fireworks somewhere. This year we were invited to go to Columbus, OH to watch their festivities called Red, White and Boom. Apparently this is an every year event where they close down the whole area of downtown Columbus and there are street vendors with food, games, big tail gating parties and when it gets dark there is the most amazing fireworks show I have ever seen in my whole life. But the downside is there are about seven bazillion people there and two porta potties which means long, long, LONG lines to wait in. And if that isn't bad enough - once you make it into the smelly porta potty it's pitch lights at all to see anything. Joy. You'd think I would be able to navigate in any bathroom with lights on or off considering I use them so often but when you are afraid to touch anything and cannot easily locate the toilet paper it leads to some fun times in the dark...or not.

I didn't realize this would be the case when we decided to attend Red, White and Boom with some friends of ours. I didn't know what the bathroom situation would be until we go there. I figured porta potties but I guess I didn't count on so many people being there and the long lines. I mean really, who wants to wait in a line to go to the bathroom in a two by two stink tank unless it's absolutely necessary. It couldn't have been absolutely necessary for all those people to be there waiting - could it?

The more people I saw and the less porta potties I saw the more nervous I became. Let's face it, when I have to poop I have to poop NOW! The urge comes out of nowhere and it's either going to be in a toilet or in my pants. Which I guess technically wouldn't be that much of a problem if I were in the comfort of my own home (maybe not) but being over an hour away from home around thousands upon thousands of people I didn't know except for the church friends who let us ride with them (including two of our youth kids) I was not up for the embarrassment of an accident.

Once we found where we were going to be sitting - with more friends that our church friends knew - I headed straight for the porta potty and stood in line. I really didn't have to go but considering the line I figured once I finally got there I would have to. Jay came along to wait with me as he was feeling very guilty for having brought me to such an unfacilitated place. So we waited, and we waited and we waited some more. About a half hour later I was in the porta potty desperately seeking the toilet paper and trying not to fall in the big gaping hole that held at least a thousand peoples' waste. Like I said, it wasn't so much the smell, it was the fact that I couldn't see a thing! And of course, once I got in there I still didn't have to go. I really hate my guts!

To make a long story short (I know, too late) I made it through the entire event and didn't have to go back to the porta potties. I thank God for that! I also was able to sit and watch an amazing fireworks show. But the part that I've been thinking about lately is the fact that I have become limited by my anxiety of not having a nice, clean, available and well lit restroom wherever I go. That bothers me - a lot.

Since my recent unemployment I have been considering going back to school and while thinking of several different career choices I realize I am again, limited by my restroom needs. For example: I would love to be a surgical tech and be in the operating room handing the surgeons what they need and witnessing awesome, life saving procedures. But it isn't like I would be able to say "Hey doc, can you hang on for a second? I gotta go poop real fast." Becoming a paramedic is something else I have considered. However as the ambulance races off to a car accident or a burning building it would be impossible for me to ask the driver to pull over at the closest restroom because the urge to go hit me and I can't wait. And the more I think about these limitations the more angry I become about it. Partly due to the fact that I can't just go do what I want like most people but also because the doctor STILL can't tell me what is causing my problem so it can't be fixed - medically.

It also doesn't help when I get worked up and worried about a bathroom situation when I am in a bad situation like Red, White and Boom. The more freaked out I become the more I have to go but it isn't like I can't think about it or worry about it when the time comes because I never know when the time is going to come so I have to have some kind of pre planning.

Okay I am done ranting for a while. I just really needed to express how I have been feeling lately. The kid goes back to school in less than month already! Summer is almost over I guess.

1 comment:

Kathryn H. said...

Terrifying. Absolutely terrifying. I spent a long weekend at the beach and we often found ourselves eating out on the boardwalk and walking around at night. They had a bank of all these toilets (they were portable, but nicer than portapotties). They were also my savor, as I ran to them repeatedly. I'm so sorry you were in that situation - not a fun one to be in, and awkward when you have to rush from the group and find a bathroom STAT! :-)