I know there are more pressing issues in the world, but the most mind-mushing thing that I have been dealing with the last two years has been the potty training of a tiny human being. There is so much advice, way too many opinions, and an unlimited amount of “experts” on the subject. I realize that is something everyone goes through, and eventually succeeds in learning how to use the toilet, but for a time I felt like a failure whenever I took my Buzzsaw to the playground. It seemed as if every child out there over the age of 9 months was no longer wearing diapers or pull ups! What the hell was wrong with me!?
I had done countless internet searches. I verbally accosted numerous customers at work. I tried every trick, every technique, every bribe that was suggested. Nope. My Buzzsaw was having none of it. Not completely anyway. He did what a lot of children apparently do, which is to show an interest early on and then decide that diapers are more convenient. He peed in his little potty that we bought around age 1 1/2. I was soooo excited to think we had a fast track kid in our home. He enjoyed the sticker chart and everything. Before the Bdawg and I knew it the screaming fits started. Anytime we mentioned using the potty the tears would start and the emphatic “No’s!!” began.
When he fell in love with Super Mario Kart, I tried using that as motivation. If he wanted to play the game then he had to try using the toilet. Backfired like a Russian tank. He no longer wanted to play the game. So we backed off. No more pushing the issue for awhile. Within two weeks, I think, he started getting “bathroom curious” and intermittently began peeing in his little potty! Shortly after that we found some women in our neighborhood who were trying to start an in-home daycare and we had our allies in the potty training battle!
It took a few months but we eventually got wearing pull ups at bed time only and about two months ago he stopped having accidents at home. With peeing that is. Number two is a whole other adventure. We tried encouraging pooping in the potty with even worse fits than with peeing and a lot of just not going. Good thing he actually likes prune juice! We also dealt with some, um, interesting accidents at home. He made good use of the wipes trying to clean up after himself, at least he tried. And at least he went and stood on the vinyl drop cloth by his easel another time, made it much easier to clean up. And the last accident was a simple matter of handing him some toilet paper so he could pick up what he “dropped” in the hall just outside the bathroom!
Last week we were finally able to enroll him in preschool. I was prepared to basically lie and say yes, he is potty trained, because the only time he would poop was at home and I figured it wouldn’t have to be a problem. The preschool administrator mentioned a couple of other children were only pee potty trained and I sighed with relief. Okay, no biggy, we’ll get there then. Two days later I hear him tell me he pooped. I get up expecting to have to clean up a mess and instead, I hear the toilet flush and I find him standing in the bathroom with a big grin and loudly proclaiming, “I pooped mommy! I pooped in the potty!” now, he flushed the “evidence” so I had to check him to not only be sure he did, but to show him about using toilet paper. Sorry if this is TMI for some people, I’m trying to be as delicate as I can. Sure enough, he actually did the deed!
Two days after that he did the same thing at daycare and again when we got home that afternoon! He also started asking about going to Toys R Us to get Super Mario Galaxy 2 because we had been promising for a year to do that if he would just poop in the potty! I should mention here that we hadn’t mentioned the prize in at least 5 or 6 months and he remembered! Scary. So we took him to get the game and he has made me liar right before starting preschool! Lovely.