As a little girl, I was always a big fan of playing dress up with a big trunk of assorted clothes from my mom’s closet. She even dabbled in sewing a few items herself. Over the years, the trunk grew as my sister and I added various accessories gifted to us, as well as our ridiculous dance recital costumes.
If you ever dabbled in dance as a young child, or you have ever watched “Toddlers and Tiaras” you know how obnoxious and utterly amazing the sequined, stretchy fantastically colored toddler slutwear is at a dance recital.
A age five I remember doing a tap number to “Yellow Polka Dot Bikini.” Yes. We wore itsy bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot bikinis with sequins around the waist.
As five year olds.
We also had a little beach towel as a prop.
I distinctly remember feeling self conscious about my pot belly hanging out. Did I mention I was five?
Anyway, back to dress up time. My sister and I would put our dance recital costumes in the trunk to use later for cosplay. The other girls in the neighborhood would come over to play in our basement and we would all pretend to be fabulous women, or drag queens. I’m not totally sure. But we looked amazing.
Then one year, I danced in this spectacular magenta leotard with silver ruffles on the sleeves. As was the standard, into the costume box it went.
One day, I was playing dress up alone in the basement and I felt an ordinary, average toot welling in my belly. Oh, you don’t know what a “toot” is?
When I was a kid, my mom didn’t allow us to use the word “fart” to describe our farts. Toot was the preferred nomenclature. She said it was more polite.
So, I tooted. Suddenly, my heart sank. I didn’t know what was happening. But something was happening. Something bad. Really bad.
And I was wearing my magenta leotard.
I scrambled up the steps to the bathroom. I peeled away the spandex and discovered, to my horror, what I would only learn many years later is referred to as…a shart.
I sharted in my leotard.
I couldn’t believe what had happened. My terror was twofold. I was afraid I would be punished for ruining my leotard. But even scarier was the idea that I somehow had lost control of my own body. I was six years old, for Christ’s sake – old enough to control my own BMs!
Oh, you don’t know what a “BM” is either? BM stands for “bowel movement” and it was the preferred nomenclature for poop when I was a kid.
I rushed to the sink and started scrubbing the best I could. I managed to wash it out completely, with the exception of maybe a slight trace of shadow. I put the leotard back in the trunk and swore to never speak of it again.
A year or two later, some friends were in my basement and we were playing dress up. I was cautious to avoid the magenta leotard. As we rifled through the assortment, one of my friends grabbed it.
“I’m gonna wear THIS!” she exclaimed. I wracked my brain trying to come up with some excuse for her not to wear it.
“NO! You can’t. It’s, uh, my favorite,” I stammered.
“But I saw it first,” she whined.
“No, I don’t want anyone to wear it.”
Some sniping followed, and eventually Mrs. Haynes, my nanny, came down to intervene. She explained the importance of sharing, or threatened to spank me or something. In the end, I was forced to relent.
As my friend stood there in my pink poopy leotard, I felt like the worst person in the world. I felt guilty for letting her wear it, and at the same time, I was afraid she would realize she was wearing my poop and not want to be my friend anymore.
She never found out. And I never told anyone until now. I’m really a horrible person.