A Potty Training Moment I'll Never ForgetFriday, August 28, 2015
Sometimes it feels like potty training never ends. Is this a boy thing? Goodness, I hope not since that seems to be my preferred gender of child. Just this week I posted my concerns about my 3-year-old going to college still having "accidents". I think I was looking for reassurance, camaraderie, I don't know maybe even sympathy. Please tell me you can relate!
Over the past year, we have had our trials with potty training. I knew at 30 months we were not going back to diapers, expect we were expecting a baby at the time so I kept everything we didn't use including diapers, our favorite character Pull-Ups, a great potty book, and loads of lessons learned. I will have to admit though, that I still sometimes threaten to put J in a diaper (bad mommy - I know) when he has too many accidents in a row. He always says though "you mean Pull-ups?" That's when I want to just scream "No! I mean DIAPERS!" but I refrain and hand him the mop. The past year has brought a lot of changes for him including a baby brother and a new home. For a 3-year-old, wow those two things alone are a big deal on top of how much he's already growing and changing! So, even though I have to remind myself sometimes, he does deserve patience and understanding.
The funny thing about all this potty stuff is, you never think how it actually consumes you before you are in the midst of it. Potty training a child is hard work. It's frustrating, exhausting, and sometimes you do just want to put them back in diapers. Then, there's that moment. I don't know if other parents remember this moment or not, but for me, I don't think I'll ever forget it.
I was sitting on the couch after the kids and the husband had gone to bed. I was probably watching Pretty Little Liars or something equally fantastic when I heard Jonah get up. At that point my instinct was concern. "Jonah?" .... "Do you need to go potty?"..... Please don't wake the baby... "Jonah?" ... No answer. Then I heard him flush, turn on the sink, wash his hands, and go back to bed. I never got up. He did it all own his own! He got up from sleeping, still half asleep, used the bathroom and went back to bed without needing me. This may seem silly, but it was a BIG deal. I mean.. he even washed his hands. It felt like: Training Complete. Check.
Of course, since then, it hasn't always happened that way, but I feel like it was a milestone and a turning point none-the-less. It was like one of those moments that is the end of a stage. As a parent you are over-joyed that they can do it own their own, but also a little sad because it's just one more thing they don't need you for. Like when they can feed themselves, buckle their own seat belt, the last time they take a paci, they are just a little less of a baby little by little.
So, here's some things I've learned in my wise old age and experience with all the children I've potty trained.. okay THE child I potty trained. Give them some slack. Give yourself some slack. Keep the Pull-ups around just in case. An overnight care ride. Pull-Ups. Sickness hits. Pull-Ups. Not quite night trained. Pull-Ups. You can get them for a great price at Family Dollar ($8.50 if you text CARE to 28767) and a few packs will last you a long time! Jonah never saw them as equivalent to diapers and was able to understand that they are just in case you don't make it! He also loved the characters and the fact that he could take them up and down by himself.
Now, for this next one... I'm a little afraid of potty training Ezra! He has some determination like I have never seen before. I have to be honest that I was hesitant to use training pants with Jonah in the beginning, but now that I know the patterns fade when they are wet to show them they've had an accident I may try them earlier with E. I pray having some experience will help me on the second go-round!
Did your children potty train the same or did you have to take a totally different approach with each?