Sunday, August 2, 2009

The Tank's new Achilles heel

Is there such thing as having slight OCD? Or is it like being a little bit either are or you aren't?

My four year old, the Tank has recently become extremely germ conscious. At first, I thought it was really cute when the Tank insisted on washing his hands to "kill the germs." In fact, I praised his pre-school teachers for stressing that good hygiene keeps everyone healthy. I was really excited that they were reinforcing habits that I was already teaching my troops at home.

The Tank's teachers were militant about the children washing their hands upon entering the classroom, "we don't want to pass around our germs" they would reason with the students. The teachers were also adamant about the children not sharing food or drinks, "no sharing germs" they would emphasize at snack time.

I was even excited when the Tank started to share his passion for being clean with his brothers at home. Again, his little anxieties were cute at first. He became the "hand inspector," as his brothers would exit the toilet he'd be standing right outside the door, "Let me see them!" he'd command, referring to their hands. Once the Destroyer waved his wet mitts in front of the Tank and the Tank instructed him to return for another washing, "I don't smell soap," he insisted.

One time we were at Disney and the Tank needed to use the potty, so I brought him to the restroom, where the line was just as long as the line to meet and greet Mickey Mouse. When it was our turn, we went into the stall, only to find that it was out of seat covers, which is a necessity for the Tank to use the facilities in public. I assured him that a little bit of toilet paper would serve the same purpose and not to worry, that his tushy would be safe. My reasoning seemed to appease the Tank, until the toilet paper slipped while he was in the middle of doing his business.

"Quick! Lift me up!" screamed the Tank.


"My butt's going to catch germs!" practically hyperventilating the Tank commanded, "Lift me up!"

"You'll be fine, we're in Disney, it's one of the cleanest places on Earth! You can probably eat off this floor and not catch anything. Just finish up ," I responded calmly.

At this point, I could hear the lady in the stall next to us begin to giggle.

When we finally exited the restroom, the Bear asked, "what took so long?"

"The Tank found a new kryotonite."