The Boys’ Room

I knew it was bound to happen; I just didn’t know it would be today.

Aaron, Joshua, and I went to SM Megamall to do some last-minute shopping for the kids of Meritxell Foundation. The mall was crowded but my son was well-behaved while I picked out toys for Leo and Janina’s beneficiaries. We already explained to him that the toys we were buying for that day are for underprivileged kids and not once did he demand that we get something for him.

After the cashier rang up our purchases, we went outside to wait for Rona. My boss, bless her heart, not only sponsored three kids for the foundation but also volunteered to drive us over to the drop-off point in Marikina. While waiting for her, my son suddenly said , “Nanay, CR ako.”

Crap. It was a holiday so I knew the lines to the restroom were probably as long as South Super Highway. Aside from that, Rona was going to show up any minute and it would be rude to keep her waiting. For a brief moment, I was tempted to let him pee anywhere but I remembered my promise not to tolerate such uncouth behavior. Besides, what if we got caught? That would be too embarrassing.

Aaron volunteered to stay behind and keep an eye on the gifts (there were a lot, thanks to my friends) while my son and I sprinted back to the mall. We had to go the lower ground floor to get to the restrooms and were greeted with a blockbuster line in the girls’ powder room. There was no way I could cut through the line because there were also mothers who had toddlers with them.

“Anak, kaya mo bang mag-CR dun sa mga lalake?” I asked Yeoshie.

A flicker of hesitation crossed his face.

I gestured towards the long line. “Anak, ang haba ng pila eh. Mamaya ka pa makaka-weewee.”

“Antay mo ako sa labas, ha?” he requested.

So in he went to the boys’ restroom while I waited right outside, just like a matrona waiting for some young gigolo to make my day. Out of the corner of my eye (direct eye contact with anyone inside would’ve given me either a black eye or an indecent proposal) I saw the janitor look at Yeoshie.

Boss, alam niya na po gagawin, pakituro na lang saan siya pupunta,” I requested the janitor. He obliged and my son was finally able to do his business.

When he went out, he was smiling just like any other person enjoying the relief of having emptied a full bladder. We snuck into the ladies’ room where he washed his hands (no need to fall in line for that).

We got out of the building and I proudly told Aaron what Yeoshie did. The act might have been brought by unavoidable circumstances, but it was gratifying seeing how my son was able to manage.



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