It seems illusive and then suddenly it's happening. An agent asks if she can call you! You think she'll probably offer representation! YIKES! Leap around the house. Scrub the bathtub. Sing silly songs. Kiss the baby.
I cleared the house for The Call. I farmed out my children in preparation. I put the baby down for a nap early. It was awesome.
During The Call my house was totally quiet. I was perfectly professional. (*ahem*--except for the nervous giggling at the beginning and the "Oh, I've been so excited to talk to you!" in a sixth-grade girl voice--*ahem*)
Then came The Acceptance Call. Short and sweet. My agent said she was thrilled, we both danced a jig on our opposite sides of the continent. All was well.
Then came The Call After the Acceptance Call to talk details. I didn't prepare so well for this call. My big kids were at school, but my two little girls were home and both awake. I figured it would be fine. My two-year-old was playing nicely, so when the call came, I took it in the office.
I have no idea how long this call lasted, but it was going great, I was making notes, when all of a sudden the door creaked open and my two-year-old was standing in the doorway, bare bottomed, holding out a long stream of toilet paper smeared with poop.
I don't remember exactly what Emmanuelle was talking to me about at that moment. I think it was something about cover ideas (I'm sure it was a wonderful cover idea), but suddenly all her words ran together and I was faced with a dilemma.
I'd been trying so hard to be professional.
But here is my daughter smeared with poop standing in the middle of my office.
I had to make a decision:
1) FULL DISCLOSURE: "Ha ha! My daughter is standing in the middle of my office with a bare bottom and poop all over her."
2) PARTIAL DISCLOSURE: "Sorry, I have a little emergency here. Can I call you right back?"
3) DENIAL: Keep talking on the phone and silently guide the poopy child back to the bathroom; try to finish the call with some kind of grace.
It was probably not the best choice, but I chose option 3.
In hindsight, I should have gone with option 2. But I was in panic mode and in panic mode you don't always make good choices.
Now that I know my agent a little better, I'm sure she would have been very understanding even if I'd dropped the Option 1 bomb. She's gracious and has a great sense of humor, so I'm sure she would have laughed along with me.
Did I learn anything from this fiasco?
1) Only that parenthood is sometimes not synonymous with professionalism.
2) That it's good to stay humble. You never know when a child covered in poop will walk into your office and interrupt a phone call.
3) That you can do your best, but in the end, poop still happens.
I'm sure you all would have handled this situation much better than I did, but tell me your thoughts. Any other lessons I could learn from this? Is anyone totally grossed out? Have I convinced anyone to swear off having children forever?
Well, that last one wasn't my intention, so just in case, here's my daughter looking like the angel she often is:
|"Mommy, this is for you."|
|Yep, she's worth it!|