Out of all the things no one told me before I entered the hallowed halls of the mommy-hood, the most significant omission was about the bathroom.
How it would become sacred space.
Since I've been a mother, I've noticed that there is no such thing as bathroom privacy. I will be sitting, unsuspectingly, and my son will burst in with questions. Then my nephew will have to wash his hands or tell me something or just be in there with me. Other kin-children will stick their heads in to voice their requests.
When I am in the tub, they wander in to use the bathroom--though there is a half-bath here, also. Every question, every concern becomes urgent when mama is in the bathroom. They need to know now!
Conversely, the bathroom with locked door has become a business and social space. Where do I take important calls? Where did I proofread my last conference paper?
Yep, you guessed it.
My sister and I sequester ourselves there to talk and catch up. The other day, I was in the tub and she sat on the toilet to tell me what had been going on in her life. The bathroom has become her refuge, as well. With a new baby, a sorta-jealous seven-year-old, and a talkative fiance, she literally escapes to the bathroom for a break--though her fiance, like many significant others, will follow her in there sometimes, too.
She's an avid reader who now gets most of her reading done in the bathroom. I've been known to finish a novel or two in there myself.
As we sat there, one boy or the other began to knock on the door.
"Go away!" she yelled, but stood up to go see what they wanted.
I stopped her, said something to the effect of "We should ban them when we're in here."
"Girl, please," she said, "I remember getting in the tub with mama."