Sorry. Not My Kind of Bar!

There are many teaching milestones that we hit as parents. Potty training. Brushing teeth. Riding a bike. Fixing mommy a martini. You teach your littles how to do basic things so that when they leave your nest they can fly. Right?

This past weekend I realized that I had failed one of my baby birds in the oddest, unknowing way possible.

A few weeks ago my oldest had a tournament in Oklahoma City, so we packed up the family and made a mini vacay out of it. I love staying in a hotel. I just do. I know the horror stories and how you don’t want to black light the comforter๐Ÿ˜ฌ, the phone๐Ÿ˜ฌ, the remote control๐Ÿ˜ฌ … I get all that. But it’s just the idea of walking into the massive lobby, riding elevators, sleeping in the whitest sheets ever with a hint of bleach. I love it. This particular trip, we stayed with the team at the Residence Inn. Normally when we leave a hotel, if there are any ‘products’ left, I grab them. They are perfect for spend the nights or future extended trips when products aren’t generously replenished. As delightful as this hotel was, they had one major flaw: bar soap. Adam jokingly said upon departure “You forgot to pack up the soap.” He knew. I have no problem admitting it – I hate bar soap. The only bar in my wheelhouse is the kind that serves champagne or chardonnay. If I’m lucky, maybe a nut.

In fact, I haven’t used bar soap since the mid 80s when I discovered that Caress had a liquid body wash. “Before you dress, Caress!” I never looked back. Prior to that, my childhood cleansing consisted of one thing: Irish Spring. I can still hear my dad yodeling post shower “Clean as a whistle.” But yes, bar soap and I parted ways a long long time ago. I don’t like the way it feels on my skin after rinsing. It’s all….residue-y. Mostly though, I can’t handle the way the bar sits there in the shower or soap dish…one side all dry and cracking while underneath it’s all slimy… and mushy. ๐Ÿคข๐Ÿคข๐Ÿคข And bar soap in a public gas station? That God knows who touched? And has dirt stripes mixed in with the mush?

I. Go. Fetal.

So, it would be unlike Adam to pass this opportunity to point it out and give me a hard time. The bar soap stayed and I made a sarcastic comment about “I can’t remember the last time I used bar soap.” My youngest replied “What’s bar soap?” We all laughed because we thought she was piggy backing on our teasing.

I was wrong. So wrong.

This past weekend we had another tourney. Different hotel. Same chain. And yes… there in the bathroom staring at me in it’s glaringly white Paul Mitchell cover was the bar. My heart sank a little because I should have known from a few weeks ago to pack some bath gel I swiped from another hotel to avoid having direct contact with it. I’m not new at this – so what happened? Premenopausal brain? However, I’m not a total princess. I can take one for the team and lather up old school.

But my youngest daughter….

She’s taking a shower and midway through I hear, “Mom? Can you come here?” Oh God! When you hear that coming from your child mid shower your mind races to horrible, dark places. What am I going to see? What am I going to have to explain? What??? I walk to the door and covered with a towel but soaking wet she shows me a small plastic container and says, “Something is wrong with this soap. I keep trying to lather it, but it just slides off.” Looking at the vial I immediately assess the situation and am overwhelmingly tempted to make fun of her because it clearly reads “Body Lotion.” Instead, my inner dialog kicks is: Oh dear sweet baby girl. This is exactly why we’ve talked about the importance of being able to read. C’Mon! Get your head out of your ass. But I tucked my sarcasm away and instead say, “Honey, it won’t lather because it’s lotion. Says so right there…. LOTION.”

That’s when things went drastically downhill for me as a mother. A parent fail was on the horizon that had nothing to do with lack of reading a label.

Youngest: But… where’s the soap then?
Me: [pointing] It’s that right there. The bar of soap.
Youngest: What’s bar soap?
Me: Are you kidding me right now?
Youngest: Do I look like I’m kidding?
Me: Okay. Valid. Honey, you use that bar as your soap.
Youngest: How?
Me: Well…you just…I don’t know…use it. You take a rag and wet it, then rub the bar all over the cloth until it’s soapy. Then you wash your body with the cloth. 
Youngest: What do you mean rag?
Me: A rag? Use a rag. How do you not know this word??? Washcloth. You use the washcloth.
Youngest: I’ve never used a washcloth. I’ve only used a bath sponge.
Me: Well, the other option is to raccoon it, but it’s not my favorite. Rub the soap with your hands and lather up. Then wash with your body with your hands. Like a raccoon. Bottom line Butter Bean, use the bar and figure it out. 
Youngest: [Confused] Um….okay. 

I left baby girl, walked to my husband and said, “This is 100% your fault.”

Just kidding, I think I actually said “We are the worst parents ever. How does our 12 year old child not know how to use bar soap?” And y’all. Please. It’s not like she’s 4. She’s 12 for Dial’s Sake! But I feel like we’ve crippled her by only surrounding her with Bath and Body’s apple basket mountain whisper verbena scented foaming soap. Sigh. At least now she knows? Crisis averted – check. Life lesson – check. 

So rest assured we are temporarily good to go….until the next incident of parent failure arises. (I’m pretty sure she can tie her shoes…but I might need to verify.) Gotta run!

Be Tee Dubs – had no idea Irish Spring was originally touted as a “Manly Deodorant Soap”. Wasn’t really looking for someone to tell me, “Hey Amy! You smell so … manly.” How did I not notice that when I used it my entire childhood?!? It was clearly stated on the front of the box. Obviously, I didn’t read the package. Huh. ๐Ÿค” Well, there you have it. This, my friends, is a perfect example of the phrase “Cats have kittens.” Now go lather up!

For you nostalgia buffs who remember the whistle, or millennials who have NO idea what I’m talking about! Enjoy the vid!

Parenting Graphic by artist Anne Taintor

10 Comments on “Sorry. Not My Kind of Bar!

  1. Reminds me of working the desk at the intermediate school at the kids coming in needing help using a real phone. Turns out many have never had to actually dial numbers – they’re just programmed into their phones. Remember when we had to get up to change the TV channel and didn’t even have cable? These kids are so soft.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes!!! Lol!!! They are!!! Also much like the story of me trying to show the girls how to roll a window down that wasn’t automatic. Ha ha!!!!


  3. seriously, u need to write a book. i was LOL so hard! you write so well i could picture u and the A’s perfectly.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. OMG, this is sooo stink’n funny! I love laughing at your parenting fails my friend!! And how you tell the stories of those fails… keep it going!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love your story!!! The description of staying at hotels, the collecting soaps or shower gels and the learning lesson of washcloth and bar soap. We did use Irish soap, caress and at times Ivory. Hated hated hated Ivory. Am laughing away this morning. Was support to go on the thread mill before heading out to a meeting but instead reading your blog. It is great.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ha ha!!! Yes! I hated Ivory too. It always seemed especially ‘mushy.’ And I’ll promise to save you from the ‘dreadmill’ as much as possible! ๐Ÿ™‚


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