We just moved into a community in West Ashley that does not have a neighborhood pool (major bummer!). Living in Charleston, I know you can all relate to the extreme need of cooling off without getting all sandy. The good news is, super mom here (a.k.a. me 😉) had a great idea to join the local waterpark! Actually, it was my friend’s idea, but who’s counting?
On one of our first visits to the waterpark, I waltzed in with the kids, ready for some serious fun. To my surprise, there were what seemed like 500 people standing on the sidelines of the large swimming pool. Standing. Waiting. Watching. Eager to jump back in at any second. What are they doing?
I approached a lifeguard, pointed out the obvious and asked why no one was in the pool.
“Someone had an accident in the pool.”
Someone pooped in the pool.
Horrified, I pulled my kids aside, set down our things on one of the few open chairs and lowered myself to eye level with my six-year-old. “Buddy, we can’t go in the big pool for a while. Probably not for the next few times we come here. We’ll just hang out in the lazy river and by the slides. That will still be fun! Okay?”
My son: “Why?”
Me: “Well…someone pooped in the pool.”
My son: *Looks over at the pool and back at me*. “Mom. They’re cleaning it.”
Me: “Yeah, but it’s still probably going to be gross for a while. We should give it a few times of coming here before we go back in the big pool.”
My son: *Looks over at the pool and back at me*. “Can’t you just trust them?”
Me: Mind blown. Who is this kid?! Is he for real? My kid just asked me if I can trust the lifeguards. I’m not sure if I should laugh or cry. “Let’s just go over to the jungle gym for now and play on the slides”.
We head over to the slides, and I watch as the lifeguards ‘clean’ the pool. Cleaning consisted of one lifeguard walking laps up and down the pool with gloves on and a net in his hand. Eeek. Meanwhile, kids are running about, and thoughts are swirling in my head. This water is unusually warm. Is that baby’s diaper about to fall off? Did I just smell pee?
I realized that suddenly, every thought in my head tied directly back to an accident in the pool. Does this ever happen to you? It is the absolute worst! It’s like when the school makes the obligatory mention of lice precautions for the school year and suddenly my head is itchy and I’m paranoid for the next month. Instant hypochondriac. We’ve been lucky enough to not have a real issue, but if it ever happens — I’d like to say I’ve put myself through worse mental hula-hoops than it would actually be in real life.
—15 minutes later—
My son: “Mom, I have GREAT news!”
Me: Acting like I didn’t hear anything.
My son: “MOM! I HAVE REALLY GREAT NEWS!”
Me: “What’s that?”
My son: “The pool is open again! Let’s go!”
My son: *Jumping in the pool*.
And that was the day someone pooped in the pool, and we all swam in it afterward.
Cheers to you mama friends. Cheers.
Full disclaimer, I’m sure the chemicals in the pool are there for a reason. And I’m sure that the pool was sanitary before they let anyone get back in. On behalf of myself, my kids, and literally at least 100 other people who wanted to swim elbow to elbow as their only means of escaping the hot Charleston sun — thank you to the lifeguard who was on poopy patrol that day.
I’m here to report that we are all fine, and we’ve been back to the waterpark several times afterward.