Last month Muscato and I vacationed in Mexico. Our alarms woke us at 3:45 to catch an early morning flight out of O’Hare. On the forty minute commute from the Cancun airport to our resort, I started getting really tired, which of course, I attributed to four hours of sleep the night before. Wrong.
We made it to the resort and grabbed a late lunch until our room was ready. Only, I didn’t eat much. My normally raging metabolism was on hold, overruled by an unusual lack of appetite. Once escorted to our room, shown around, and given our bags, I fell asleep within minutes.
I woke up three hours later to body aches, light headedness, and weakness. But by golly we had dinner reservations, so I got up and got dressed. I bypassed heels for flats and didn’t touch up my makeup (the light-handed application from 4am). Forget physical symptoms. The fact that I skipped makeup is what finally alerted me to how crummy I felt.
Regardless, we went to dinner, at my insistence. Within ten minutes of being seated, I sent Muscato back to our room to get some Advil. I ate three bites at dinner.
In bed that night, I posted an Instagram recap of the day including a picture of the reception area and the items I forgot to pack: pool bag, journal, and underwear. No sense in mentioning feeling off.
The next morning, assisted by Advil, I perked a little more. I managed an entire bowl of cereal at breakfast. Progress.
I kept up with Advil to keep up with the day. That evening, we had dinner reservations at a sushi joint. I ate a fair amount of food. It tasted good and went down well. More progress.
That night in bed, I highlighted our dinner date on Instagram. No sense in mentioning I still didn’t feel right.
“…It’s so easy for the person you do life with to fall down the priority ladder. To get taken for granted. Especially when you heap jobs and responsibilities and a child on top of it all.
…at the heart of it, this trip is about us…”
Oh Lordy. If only I knew just how much this trip would demonstrate our us-ness.
By the next morning, my body aches were replaced by a random crampy clench tummy thing. It was uncomfortable, but whatever. By afternoon, I put a pair of linen pants on over my bikini bottoms, and we headed to an adults only section of beach.
The adult area is about 100 yards away from the ocean. It’s chill with a food truck and coconut water served in fresh coconuts. There are palm trees. Lots of them. There are hammocks, shady seating under swaying fronds, cushiony lounge chairs, and speakers playing great music. This is where Mark and I sit.
I’m actually hungry and eager to eat. The server dropped off menus. I decided what I wanted.
Then I farted.
“Ooop. I’m not sure that was just air.” I say to Mark.
Now at this point, let’s take pause for me to say that I consider myself to generally be a good decision maker. Unfortunately, in this instance, all form of good judgment escaped me.
In this instance sound thinking would go like this: Stop farting. Go to the bathroom.
What did I do? Leaned onto one cheek and ripped a little more.
“Whoop!” I said standing faster than a Cubs fan witnessing a World Series win. “That wasn’t air.”
Muscato looks at me. Deer in headlights. “What are you gonna do?”
At this point, noise ceases to exist. All vision is gone. It’s just me assessing the best way to handle this shit.
“Here’s what you’re going to do,” I say. “You’re gonna go get a beach towel and bring it to me.”
He did. Without hesitation.
I hiked up a pant leg to see if there was drippage on my calf muscle. Clean. (Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou.)
Here comes my knight with shining towel.
I wrapped said towel around my waist and shimmied out of my pants. Clean.
“I’m going to the bathroom,” I say holding my towel up with one hand and my pants in the other.
I swear every single person I walked by en route to the bathroom (a good 200 yards away from our seats) turned and smiled at me. Like they knew my shitty little secret and found it amusing.
Fortunately, my bikini bottoms concealed all damages. I put on my pants, washed my suit in the sink, wrapped it in the towel, and walked back. To a waiting Muscato. Whose deer-in-headlights look was replaced by that clinical glaze perfected by every physician out there. A look that’s as sterile as an operating room.
“How was it?” he asked.
God bless that man. He didn’t laugh at me. He didn’t make fun of me. He didn’t run away as fast as possible. He listened to my recap and then asked what I wanted to eat.
Yeah right. Like I was eating after shit storming my bikini. Please. Instead, I did what nearly every other woman in my situation would have done: Text one of my closest friends for a good laugh.
Regan was gracious enough to see whether I was in tears or in stitches. Once she realized I was laughing, check out her brilliant text response:
“Luckily you’re married to a doc so an oopsie poopsie isn’t the worst thing he’s seen. An ode to joy even if you didn’t quite make the commode.”
Laying in bed that night, I decided there was no sense in posting about poo. I recapped our walk on the beach instead; after Muscato ate, we walked it for a while. Within a mile, we saw a wedding and a topless bikini shoot. Pretty exciting, right?
Nah. Exciting is shitting yourself. On a beach. In Mexico.
And while it didn’t make the Instagram highlight reel the day it happened, it is now.
Because what fun is it if you can’t laugh at yourself and share your laughs with others?
Because the Commode To Joy tagline is, “Need relief? Lighten up.” That I did.
Because behind every highlight reel is a real story. And now you know mine.