Potty training. That’s a phase of children that I never look forward to. There are books telling us how to potty train our kids in 3 days. Apparently, my kids missed that memo because neither of them have fallen for it. With our son, Brixton, he pretty much decided that it seemed fun at first, but after the excitement wore off, not so much. At which point, we were on a year long road of “please go on the potty!”. That quickly turned to bribery!
Around 2 years of age we thought our he was ready to use the potty because he showed interest in removing his diaper and running through the house naked. There may not have been as much interest in actually using the potty as there was just being naked. With high hopes of having one less kid in diapers, we ran with the it. At the time, there were a ton of changes in our lives with a new baby sister, preparing to move (again!), and other family dynamics that weren’t what he was used to. We slacked off on pushing the potty issue because we didn’t want to bombard him if he wasn’t ready. After moving to our new house, we began pushing the proposing the potty once again. He didn’t respond as willingly as we had hoped. It was a continuous argument, countless bribes, and endless tears. I hate to admit the moments that I actually got frustrated that he would have rather never poop again than on the potty. We tried everything: Cheerios in the toilet; sit down or stand up; “if you go on the potty I’ll give you candy!”; begging.. you name it. Somehow, we were given this kid who has the strongest will power of any small human I’ve ever seen. Seriously, he had made up his mind he would go on the potty whenever he was ready, not us. And he did.
Just over a year later, we moved again. This time it was a different move, a different setting. We were embarking on a situation that was new for all of us. We moved into my parents’ house. Who would’ve thought that this type of change would spark some cooperation on the potty front?! Not me. But it did. Within a few months, our son, the hard-headed, super intelligent child that he, decided he no longer wanted to wear pull-ups or diapers. THANK GOODNESS!! We had a way of coaxing, I guess. He, like many other kids, loves chocolate. And we, as his totting parents, fell for it. If he went on the potty, he could have a piece of chocolate. I guess we didn’t really fall for his games, as much as he fell for our’s. Regardless, it worked. The payoff according to him was a trip to Chuck E. Cheese (a parents’ hell on earth!). One down, one to go.
Here we are at kid #2. I’d like to think this will be a breeze comparatively, but I have my reservations. Given that there are no two kids the same, and I have the two most opposite kids alive, I know this isn’t going to be a smooth transition. Then factor in Ingrid being blessed with Down Syndrome. There is a guidance chart for kids with DS to show progression in comparison to typical kiddos. I hate this chart. It’s so vague. There isn’t a chart on earth that can fully explain any person, adult or kid. All of these charts are an unfair perspective of what a person “should” be. Well, I believe otherwise. Ingrid is tiny. She doesn’t fall into a category on the charts. According to the charts, she is too small, yet as per her doctors, the ones who care for her, she is perfectly healthy. Sorry, rant ended. Back to Ingrid and the potty. Now, we are at age 3. She shows every ‘sign’ of being ready to ditch diapers and solely use the potty.. except that she doesn’t tell us when she has to go. She, like her brother before her, would much rather not wear a diaper.. at all. We have to make sure she has pants/shorts on at all times. The days of our pretty little girl wearing her “Daddy’s little Princess” nightgowns have been halted. Give this kid the opportunity, and she is an un-diapered lunatic who runs the house in an effort to avoid diapering. Just yesterday she undressed from her pj’s, removed her diaper, and pee’d in the hallway!! No joke. She is not tactful about it either.. no way. She stood beside her potty spot on the floor and yelled “Ma! Ma!”. I come running because that kind of beckoning means she did something bad. Yes, she did. She pee’d on the floor. I say to her “Why is your diaper off?”. Her response is “off”. That’s all. A girl of few words.
I dread knowing that our kids are growing up so fast. The days of free hugs and them liking us are going to be gone someday. But I can say with certainty that after experiencing the potty world with both of our kids, their attitudes and amazing strong-willed personalities will guard them through life. There is no doubt in my mind that they’ll never take anyone’s mess.. they are fighters. That’s what potty training has proved!
I know the day will come and purchasing diapers will be a thing of the past, but in the meantime, Red Electra wine (my favorite!!!) will get me through it.
So, to all of the parents that feel their kid will drive them crazy before they set them free, you’re right. They will. Why not, we did it to our parents?!