Disclaimer: Okay. I will admit it. When it comes to my daughter, I am a pushover. It started seven years ago with her birth and has not abated. Her tiny pinky finger has grown but I am still wrapped around it.
Now to our story. It is summertime. School is out. Summertime means summer vacations. Summer vacations mean driving to exotic locales. Driving means being cooped up inside a minivan with my wife driving and me relegated to in-car-entertainment duties.
For several hours.
Being inside a moving minivan for several hours usually means having to stop for a bathroom break. Especially when you are dealing with bladders that are only seven years old.
Such was the case last week. My daughter politely peeked up from her laptop (okay, she was borrowing mine, but since her content was playing on it at the time, she was the owner) and asked to stop for a restroom break.
To which, my wife/driver said "Okay honey" and kept driving.
Past a few shops, strip malls, and fairly well-maintained restaurants.
Five minutes later, my daughter starts feeling the effects of that strawberry smoothie even more on her insides and requests a bathroom with more urgency in her voice.
And it just so happens that the minivan has now passed from the security of suburban sprawl and into the wilderness of no-mans-and-no-indoor-plumbing-land.
You know that scene from "The Simpsons" where Homer is frolicking in "Flushing Meadows" with toilets scattered all over the hillside? We were in the total opposite of that.
Anyone who has been within earshot of a child needing to go to the bathroom realizes the logarithmic progression a whiny-voice takes as time elapses. After 20 seconds of no stopping, the voice becomes grating. After 30 seconds, it progresses to agonizing screams. It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It absolutely will not stop until a bathroom is found.
I asked my wife later why she didn't stop when my daughter first asked and she replied:
"Oh, you never stop at the first request."
Now, I value our marriage. I keep a level-head through a lot of situations. I pondered this for a minute. Perhaps this is some form of bladder-training that I was unaware of. Maybe our daughter had a false-alarm before that I didn't know about? Or by compressing the total number of bathroom breaks to cut down on travel time? (it should be known that we were not on any sort of deadline to meet)
Still, when it comes to biohazardous waste, I would gladly err on the side of caution. My wife, however, got to deal with a pair of soaked girlshorts. She blames it on two teenagers that were hogging the restroom at the McDonald's - I say if you would've stopped at the Food Lion several miles back, you would've had a larger pee-window to operate in.
Lesson learned - my daughter's bladder does not bluff.