I have always been a modest person, and I think I got that from my mom. It may have been a generational thing (she was born in the 1940s), or a cultural thing (she was born and raised in South America).
In any case, I remember that once I got a little older (maybe around first or second grade?), I wasn’t allowed to take baths with my brothers anymore, and I was always instructed to get dressed and undressed in the bathroom, by myself, behind a closed door.
This stuck with me, and as I have aged, I have continued to be a demure person…whether it be at the doctor’s office, in the shower and locker rooms at the gym, or even in the privacy of my own apartment.
Enter labor and childbirth…
After having two kids, modesty has pretty much gone out the window.
What have I got to hide because it seems like everyone in the hospital has already seen parts of my body that I myself have never seen?
For example, I don’t feel uncomfortable breastfeeding my 9 month old in anyone’s presence (family or guests) at home, but I do wear my “Hooter Hider” if we are in a public place, like the playground. (Although I will say the Hooter Hider is not so much because of my modesty, but because I feel bad about raising the discomfort level of those around me.) By the way, a Hooter Hider is a type of nursing cover.
There are other cases where I have become not so modest….although it is also a matter of convenience. Let me explain. In the mornings when I get ready for work, my hubby is usually already gone. If the baby is already awake, I usually just bring her into the bathroom and let her play on the floor while I undress, shower, and then get dressed.
Sometimes, if my four-year old is also awake, she wants to take a shower with me. In order to expedite the morning (i.e. not deal with meltdown and bad drop-offs at childcare), I will often let her hop into the shower with me while the baby plays on the floor. In the afternoons or evenings, if I need to use the restroom, I usually do it with the baby playing on the floor and with the door open so that my ears can keep tabs on the environment since my husband isn’t usually home from work yet.
So last night, my husband was home early, and I needed to use the bathroom. I closed the door (why didn’t I lock it!?) and felt somewhat relaxed knowing that my hubby had things under control in our living space. But not one minute later, my four-year old started knocking on the door because she wanted to “tell me something.” Really? What is it that cannot wait until I leave the restroom?!
I didn’t answer the door. She started knocking harder. I still don’t answer….so she just opened the door and came in!
I just wanted to start crying. Isn’t the bathroom supposed to be a type of sanctuary? While I am not a modest person….when did I lose my privacy?
According to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, privacy is defined as “1a – the quality or state of being apart from company or observation”, “1b – freedom from unauthorized intrusion”, and “2 – a place of seclusion”. Those all sound lovely – sign me up!!
Help moms! I need help with my new year’s resolution to get some more time for myself…how do I get some privacy while I take a shower and/or go to the bathroom? And, can someone help me explain the concept of privacy to my children?
This is an original post for World Moms Blog by Eva Fannon. Eva can be found on Twitter @evafannon.
Photo credit to Towle Neu http://www.flickr.com/photos/motherscratcher/2247547489/. This photo has a creative commons attribution license.