Looking back, I realize how fucked up this was but at the time, I was just trying to earn a living being a broke college student. Just a warning, this is long and a bit gross biologically-wise.
I was working at a fast food restaurant and had been there for over a year. It was a pretty strict, clockwork method place and although there was no love or compassion there, it gave me 40 hours. Even though it was nice money, I wanted to quit for a while, just never had a reason or an alternative route to go to. Until one night…
I was a closer. Basically a shitty shift but the only thing a full time college student can do. Store would close at 11pm and I’d be out around 11:30. It’s around 10 pm and I’m doing pre-close, minding my own business, when the manager on that we will call A asked me to go clean the bathrooms. I said sure, why not, something I was used to doing. I go into the women’s bathroom and open up the first stall to find it stuff with toilet paper. Now, I’ve seen worse so I just shrug and flush. We had some pretty intense toilets so I figured it would go down.
(This is about to get gross and disturbing, turn back now if you don’t want to know!)
It didn’t. Instead the toilet paper rolled and revealed a massive amount of blood. Like, a crazy amount of clotted and unclotted blood. Being an 18-year-old female I knew that this was way too much blood for a menstrual cycle. My mind going blank, I tried to flush it again when I noticed…pieces. I looked a little closer and realize I was looking at a super tiny hand. Like the littlest hand I’ve ever seen. This was when it hit me that this was something I didn’t want to see. I hightailed my ass out of there and went to the manager.
“A, there is something in the bathroom… I can’t be in there, you have to call the GM.”
Now, the GM of the store was a mega bitch but I figured you kind of have to be a mega bitch to work in a huge corporation like she did. We will call her S.
A on the other hand is the same age as me, having had started working at the store when he was 16 and made his way up to manager. He was a nice guy and someone I considered a friend.
I didn’t realize until A told me to come to back to the break room that I was near tears. Subconsciously I probably realized that what was in the toilet was what it was but it hadn’t quite hit reality yet.
“I walked in and there was lots of blood and bits and pieces and….” I begin to have to wipe tears from my eyes and I’m still not sure why but I felt stupid for doing it at the time.
He calls the GM while I compose myself in the break room. He comes back a few minutes late and sighs really loudly.
“S said there isn’t anything we can do but flush it.”
I blankly stared at him and was waiting for him to tell me to leave it be till the cleaning crew got there in an hour. He then tells me that I need to go back and flush it. I tried to explain I couldn’t do it and he handed me a box of the cheap blue gloves we used to handle food and walked away.
I then learned two things: This job sucked ass and A was not my friend.
My other two co-workers just stared at me as I walked through the kitchen to the bathrooms. I kept randomly crying and couldn’t figure out why. A was ever so kind enough to put a “Closed for Cleaning” sign up on the door. I walked back in and once again saw this little hand and immediately walked out. I went back to the counter and A asked if it was gone. I asked if I could please use one of the heavy maintenance gloves. He said no. I then pleaded for him to send someone else to do it. My male coworker piped up from the back and said he would do it but A told me to go back and just get it over with. I flushed, and flushed and eventually the toilet paper mass must have broken up for it finally went down the drain. I’m really not sure how long it took but it felt like an eternity.
I stayed silent the rest of the night and the next morning when I woke up I knew that it was the final straw. I called work, told the GM I was done and wasn’t coming in that night to close. She asked why and I told her after last night I couldn’t face that place. She informed me that if I quit without a two-week notice I would be banned from working at any of the stores that bared that name. I was ok with that.
To receive my last paycheck I’d have to turn in my uniform and give a written notice why I quit. I walked in during supper rush and S, the GM, handed me the paper to write. I wrote “I’m quitting because I was forced to flush a late term miscarriage down the toilet.”
S tore it up and handed me another paper and told me to rewrite it. I wrote the same thing.
She told me to stop being silly and I loudly asked why it was wrong to write that they made me flush the miscarriage down the toilet. Yes I did it in front of a crowd and no I didn’t really care.
She was so embarrassed that she handed me my paycheck and walked away. I haven’t been back there since.
I still don’t really understand why I was so upset. I lived on a small farm as a child and was raised around hunters. I saw death and butchering all the time. I guess just seeing something unfamiliar in a very familiar place was just nerve wracking. I now know that it was a pretty late term miscarriage (maybe a home abortion but I try not to think like that), probably around 17 to 18 weeks.
I’m guessing that the person was pretty scared and didn’t know what to do and just left. I like to tell myself she didn’t mean to leave it behind and make me deal with it. Either way, it was a pretty bad time.