Potty Teaching

I've written about the dreaded "potty training" before, but now I feel like I have more perspective on the subject.

A lot more.

It took a year. Granted, we only did the boot-camp thing ONCE. Never again. Victoria will not go to potty-boot-camp unless she looks me in the eye and says "I go potty-boot-camp?" ... then we'll talk.

Without going through a list I'm just going to assume we tried everything that sounded relatively reasonable.

My conclusion? Potty training is stupid. That's what you do with puppies and children, though adorable and squeezable, are NOT puppies.

So I propose that any mom who stumbles across this, emotionally beat up, exhausted of anything elimination related, sick of changing diapers and bewildered as I was that THE question to ask a mom, even if you are a stranger, when you find out a child is 3 is "Oh is she potty trained?" I dunno, are you?

As I was saying, I propose we think of it as potty teaching.

Instead of stressing about when it is going to happen, how to do it, and putting our toddlers through anything called boot camp ... we just teach them.

See? Here's the potty! It's so nice we have one inside! People used to have to go OUTSIDE to do this, can you believe that?

God designed our bodies to get rid of waste, things we don't need and that could even be bad for us, by pooping and peeing! Until now we've put a diaper on you BUT - I wanted you to know there is another way, a better way!

You get all that yucky stuff away from you instead of having it trapped against you until someone changes you. Doesn't that sound nice? Yes - they may say no ma'am it does not ... and that's ok. Maybe they haven't tried it yet. I think you will.

Just like so many other things, we learn at different speeds. Shelby has an AMAZING vocabulary and a bewildering and wondrous imagination. Focus on what your kiddo is doing well. In fact, they may be so focused on excelling in some other area that they just don't have time to learn to potty right now.

At least there are some beads in there?
Our job is to teach them how it works, and to be there to help them. It's that simple. One of my many ideas was beads in a jar. When I came up with it, Shelby was excited about it. Her prize at the end was a date with whatever member or members of the family she wished. She picked Daddy.

The date will include a trip to a gymnastics class. Anytime I could get her to sit on the potty she got to watch a gymnastics video.

But it wasn't working. She really just didn't care. She is SMART. It wasn't because she didn't get it. The child would go off and change her own pull-up if she could get to them for crying aloud! At one point I told myself "at least one day she'll be able to change herself ... and eventually she can buy her own silly diapers."

Getting fuller ...
I decided once again, one fine Monday, that we had had enough. I said to her, ya know what? I know you know how to use the potty. I'm going to put the jars away, and you let me know when you're ready.

Guess what? The next day ... THE VERY NEXT DAY ... she wanted to sit on the potty. She asked for panties. She wouldn't even let me put a pull-up on her for naps or at night!

Seriously this happened in about a week

She had maybe three day-time accidents (and we just reiterated that it was part of learning) and a couple of night accidents. The night accidents quickly became dampened panties followed by a pee on the potty, and now she is happy to only sip her milk at bedtime because she doesn't want to wet the bed.

THE GIRL IS MOTIVATED. She'll disappear, poop, wipe, flush, wash without even telling me. It varies.

She is SO proud, and has EVERY reason to be! You did it sweet girl!

I read it a few times. Some moms said it but never followed up to say if it worked. IT DOES. Just teach them what to do, bring it up from time to time, but they'll start when they're ready and it is pretty amazing.

So Tori - you're the lucky one little sister. Though I swear, she wants to do anything big sister does and she often asks me to change her or asks to go potty. Who knew. But I'm not holding my breath.

I will not potty here nor there, I will not potty anywhere!