12/10/2014 06:15 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Parenting Lesson Number 4,376

Our sweet 3-year-old is terrified of pooping. Terrified. He is pee potty trained, but our life is ruled by his bowel movements. Recently he has started to ask for a diaper when his "belly hurts." A year ago I couldn't have imagined a scenario in which I would be grateful because my 3-year-old was crapping in a diaper. After a summer and fall of throwing away underwear so embedded with poop that my gag reflex prevented me from cleaning it out.... well, let's just say that the diaper development has been welcomed with open arms.

A couple of nights ago our friend kindly watched our two boys while Z and I went to an appointment. As we pulled away from her home I said a silent prayer to the poop gods asking that C not crap himself for the next hour and 20 minutes.

Cut to an hour and 20 minutes later. Z and I walked around to the back door of our friend's house. Z was ahead of me so he saw into the kitchen window over the sink. "Oh god. Oh god. Oh no."

"What? What?" I hissed. Z was still in front of me, so I couldn't see in the window. He picked up the pace, me right on his heels. At the door I could see our friend E with C in her arms. A wet C.

We burst into the house. "What did he do? What happened? Oh man, I am so sorry!" I blurted.

E was completely calm. She told us it wasn't a big deal, she was just washing his hair. It seems the four boys were running around after dinner and her son got over-excited. He puked a little. On C's head.

The panic that was flooding my system instantly abated.

"Oh! Is that all? Great!"

Six years ago unbeknownst, hell unplanned by me I'd just gotten knocked up with T. Of all the thousands of lessons I've learned from parenting in the last six years, perhaps the weirdest has been sometimes it is a tremendous relief to find out that another kid puked a little in your kid's hair.



Because what is a little puke in the hair compared to inconveniencing your friend, who is doing you a gigantic favor, with a load of crap identical to that of a fully grown man's? C was fine. He didn't even notice the puke. It is nothing friends, it is absolutely nothing.

OK, it isn't nothing. It is a hilarious story that gave us a much needed laugh. And that is how parenthood changes your worldview. It makes you grateful that a kid puked in your kid's hair. Because you need every single laugh your can get.