I’m excited to report that we finally got our little man out of diapers. This was a transition I’d been dreading because it seemed so hard, so I’m very excited that we actually did it! I read this wonderful book, Toilet Training in Less Than a Day and I thought the methods in that book were really helpful. It definitely took us more than a day, though. We didn’t do everything precisely the way the book called for, and our child isn’t quite as perfectly compliant as the book describes, either. But lucky for us, within about a week we were at a point where we could leave the house in big-boy underpants.
When I first started, I had a really bad attitude. I didn’t want to do this. It sounded really hard. I had a serious lack of energy between school and morning sickness and I was just at the verge of getting VERY sick. And on top of all that, everyone says that once you start potty training, you can’t go back. That was very intimidating. I think I was doing it partially because I saw that many of his little friends were potty trained and I felt pressured. I did believe he was ready, but I wasn’t ready. But I gave it a shot. I tried the methods in the book and they semi-worked. It was exhausting. He peed on the floor while I was throwing up once. He peed on the carpet a few times. But he did start to understand the routine. It finally got so hard that I gave myself a pass. I was sick. I was in school. We don’t have to do this right now. I gave myself about a month until graduation was over and said I’d try again then if I felt better. Screw this idea of you can’t go back. I must be willing to own up to my misjudgments. We’re going back to diapers.
Well, right on time, the day after graduation I was feeling better, and feeling excited about moving on with my life. But I was still exhausted from a long weekend. I said to Andy that morning, “I don’t want to potty train today. I’m too tired. We’ll start tomorrow.” Then I went into the bedroom to get him a diaper and remembered– most of his diapers were falling apart. Finding one that’s in good enough shape to wear is kinda hard. So much easier to just put underwear on him. So we did it! Potty training went great that day and we continued on. He did a lot better and I did a whole lot better!
Like I said, within a week he had made quite significant progress. He still had occasional accidents, but the biggest problem was that he still wouldn’t tell us when he had to go. But we would put him on the potty regularly and he would go. Then all of a sudden this weekend, he just started telling us. Over the past few days he has told us many times that he has to go, and sometimes he even beats us to the bathroom. He can do most of the work himself– pulling his pants down and everything. But he still of course requires supervision.
This process has been such a wonderful parenting adventure. I had to grease up my old parenting skills of being really in-tune with his signs and cues, following my instincts, and balancing sensitivity for him with my own knowledge of what is best for him. The biggest lesson I learned, though, was to always own up to my mistakes and misjudgments and that Peer will respond best when MY attitude is right.