Thursday, March 19, 2009

Potty training - one of the ironies of life

There are so many of these with children. You're so excited that they're talking and then you get so tired of them constantly asking "Why?" when you have no clue why or "When?" when you haven't even planned on a when and just pretty much talking nonstop.

Well, I got my fill of another one of these this morning. First, let me just say that I'm a very laid back potty trainer. Usually I put training pants on a little tot one morning, tell them whats expected, put them on the toilet a few times and when they don't successfully make it several times that morning and I go back to diapers. A couple months later, I do the same thing. Sooner or later, it just works and they take it and run with it with very little effort on my part. And by golly, I like it that way. Because what I did this morning was ridiculous.

The little princess is getting pretty close to three and while I've done the training pants thing several times and I've put her on the toilet many times, she's NEVER used the toilet. Ever. This is unusual for us. I've not had one to NEVER use the toilet by this age. Course, I've not had one this stubborn either but that's another line of thought entirely. So, this morning I was thinking that, by golly, I'm at least going to get her using the toilet so she can get an idea, at least, of this potty training thing. So I made some lemonade (we only drink water around here so even watered down 50%, it's a big hit) and filled her up. Sippy cup full after sippy cup, she guzzled quite a few.

I figured we'd hang out in my bedroom this morning...I'd fold clothes, the boys could sit at the chest at the base of my bed and do school work and we'd be right there by the bathroom to do the potty training. And the first hour or so, that worked out okay except she wasn't going to the bathroom! I was starting to despair. I pulled the big bag of M & M's out of the cabinet to display the promised treat. It's probably 1/3 of a 5lb bag that a "friend" of mine had given me several months ago. I don't know how friendly that is to dump that much candy on a person with 6 kids but, I'm sure she meant the best. (Her time is coming.)

A few moments after seeing the very big bag of candy she decided she needed to go potty. And she DID!!! Oh, what excitement and celebrating there was! After the whole "now you pull your undies back on and you move the step stool (made by my father-in-law for potty training my first) over here and wash your hands and then you dry your hands...and get candy... and then you turn the bathroom light off", we called Dad to tell him so he could stop to celebrate with us (hee hee! It's kinda funny to think of interrupting someone for that). She was so pleased and so was I. Very nice. So, I went back to teaching the boys. And after I got two sentences out of my mouth, she came back and said "I need to go potty!" That really wasn't very long at all but at this point we want to keep the the excitement, don't we?! So I jumped up and said "Okay, let's go!!" So I got up and helped her through the whole sequence (minus calling daddy) and then went back to teaching. And not 2 minutes later.... And two minutes after that, and two minutes after that and then she walked out of the room and walked back in to use the bathroom AGAIN in far less than two minutes. It was INSANE!! For the next hour and 15 minutes the insanity of constantly (and I am NOT exaggerating that there was not a break of more than 3 minutes and often it was shorter) going to the bathroom and ACTUALLY using it went on while I struggled to accomplish anything else. And I greatly struggled to not just totally lose my patience and slap a diaper back on her!! Even my 9 year old, after about 15 minutes into the ordeal, laughed and said "You thought she was never going to use the potty but now I bet you're really tired of it." Ah, yes, a diaper was looking *real* good after 30 minutes of that.

I say, kudos to the people who do the concentrated "potty training in one day" thing, but based on my small, one and a half hour experience, I am absolutely not equipped with whatever personal traits needed to deal with that! Whew!

1 comment:

Viki said...

Hi. That's a pretty funny story. I'm sorry you're having to go through it, but at least you got your desired results. I, too, called daddy when my little girl went for the first time. When my third child went poop, I guess this potty training thing was getting old, and I just emailed him that the baby had pooped. He was excited none the less. My kids have trained pretty quickly, so I can't relate to being almost 3 and no potty action. However, I CAN relate to what comes next. My second child can not go hardly no time at all when it comes to going out somewhere. So help me, we used to live maybe 5 minutes a way from Walmart. I would get her to "go" to the potty before we left, and before we could take 10 steps into the building, she would have to "go" again. Then by the time we got to the back of the store, she would have to "go" again. It was, and still is, nuts. The bad part is that she can go for hours at home without "going", and still not be wet. Periodically, I will ask her if she has to go, and she will head toward the potty for that reason. Hang in there, mama. Take comfort in the fact that things will get better. :)