Thursday, November 09, 2006

Stick for Toilet Paper

I have this friend who is just about 8 months pregnant. This is her and her husband's first child so pregnancy is very new to her. She is constantly discovering the "joys" of being pregnant, some are delightful and some are...surprising.

Earlier today, she comes to me crying. "What's wrong?" I asked her. She had just returned from using the restroom and, in more or less words, said she was frustrated with not being able to have the same range of movement as she had before the big belly emerged. (I don't really want to elaborate but, for those of you who've never been pregnant, try to imagine what it's like to have a big belly impeding on your ability to perform female hygiene the way you would like to.)

She felt she needed a stick to be able to reach certain areas which instantly reminded me of my experiences as a child living in refugee camps. Her situation is certainly not funny but thinking back to what I had to do made me chuckle.

When my family lived in the refugee camps of Thailand, toilet paper was a luxury item. The economy way to go was a dry stick (that, I remembered using). When our family could afford toilet paper, we rationed one square per person, per trip. One square, I kid you not. (Luckily, I didn't have much surface to clean then as I do now...LOL!)

Long story short, I eventually got really creative with my one square, getting the most surface area I possibly could. I would have certainly been the one to invent origami if it hadn't already been invented by then.

Now whenever I pull on a roll of TP, I think nothing of when I only had to work with a single square (and certainly will never go back to using a twig).

No comments: