Friday, September 7, 2012

Adventures in potty training

I lost count of how many nieces and nephews I have somewhere around the number 16. I'm sure I could figure it out with a little time and a calculator but then I'd have to wonder if I should include great nieces and nephews as well and this already has me going off subject!

Anyway, my siblings have a lot of kids. I grew up with most of them but I never bothered to pay much attention to what was required to raise them. I didn't learn how often to feed and burp them, how to teach them to count, or how to actually get them to fall asleep for any stretch of time. And now that we moved so far away from my family and the ever growing population of babies it seems to create, I'm kind of on my own to figure it out. I've been known to read a few books, to consult Dr. Google from time to time, but mostly I have to rely on ques from Owen to determine when he's ready for something. It's worked pretty well so far, but I think this little thing called potty training has us both stumped.

He's only 2 and a half and diapers are still very convenient for both of us so I'm not interested in rushing anything, but I also don't want to be that mom who sends her son to college in diapers! I don't know when to start pushing it or even how to approach it and while Owen shows occasional interest in the Fisher Price potty we set out for him a while ago, he doesn't seem all that ready to get down to potty business either.

He showed plenty of sudden interest yesterday afternoon though, when I caught him standing in front of the little potty, shorts down around his ankles, and frantically pulling at this diaper. When he spotted me, he started to panic and shouted, "Oh no, Mama! Poop! Poop!"

I must admit, I got a little excited at the sight of him, so afraid he may get poop in his diaper, desperately wanting to put that poop in the potty instead. I thought this was it. Potty training has begun and it was going to be a breeze! My little boy was ready and willing and this wait and see approach finally paid off. I could save a fortune on diapers. We could buy cute little Superman underwear. I would no longer have to cringe every time a friend talked about their toilet using child who is also months younger than Owen.

I helped Owen take off his diaper, he sat down on the potty, and I started going on and on about how exciting this was! He sat there quietly as I watched. His face turned a light shade of red and he made a few grunting sounds. After a minute or two he stood up, turned around, put his face only a few inches from the rim of the potty seat and shouted, "Woooaaaaaah Mama! Owen did it!! LOOK AT THAT POOP!!!! THAT'S A BIIIIIIIIG POOP!!! That's a LOT of poop!!"

My mind racing a mile a minute trying to figure out what kind of reward to give him, I prepared myself to view my son's very first non-diaper poo! Then I bent over to peek around his little head, and I saw right into the very EMPTY toilet bowl.

Moments later he did the exact same song and dance for pee.

I give him a million brownie points for the excellent imagination and impressive acting skills, but it looks like this potty training business still has us both baffled.


Jennifer said...

I think this is a good sign - he is getting the idea of what the process is and he's trying it out. Yay Owen!!! I have been very laid back in the potty-training department myself, figuring that I've yet to meet an adult who *didn't* get potty trained at some point. That being said, I'm hoping it goes more smoothly/quickly with Emmett since he has a big brother to emulate. One thing that really helped both my boys get interested in the potty is a moderately irritating video called "Potty Power" which we have borrowed from the library too many times to count now. Max figured out peeing on the potty and staying dry overnight pretty easily, but he REFUSED to poop on the potty until he was around 4 1/2... maybe even closer to 5. The in-laws thought it was outrageous that it took him so long, but what could I do - duct tape him on there until he went? No thanks! We did try every incentive we could think of, but it was just something he had to decide he was ready for in his own time. Oh - one more potty related recommendation - HD sells a toilet seat with a potty seat built into the lid. The seat is held in the lid by a magnet so grownups just open/close the toilet like normal, but the kiddos can fold the potty seat down when needed and it looks/feels like they are just sitting on the potty like a "big kid" except with the security of not feeling like they're going to fall in. Both my kids dig it and it's WAY more convenient than dealing with cleaning a potty chair!

Jennifer said...

Haha - I just remembered something and had to share. The first time Max FINALLY pooped on the potty, I was actually away for the weekend at a scrapbooking retreat... Shane texted me a picture of the poop in the potty and I remember gleefully cheering out loud! LOL the things parenthood does to you, right? Who know I would one day be thrilled to be texted a picture of poop?!

Stacy said...

Jennifer, you crack me up! For the record, I think the wait and see approach is best. We have a potty in the bathroom for Addy, but she is nowhere near ready to use it. She can tell me when she needs to poop (she does this by asking me to go night night because she doesn't want me looking at her), but she has no interest in putting it in the potty. And like everything else so far, If she's not ready to do it, it's not going to be a success! It sounds like Owen totally gets the process and is comfortable with it. I bet it will be a breeze when it does happen!!

Sher said...

Sounds like you have a future actor in the making. He's a pretty smart little fella, he knows what to do, so he'll take that leap and actually try it out soon. Keep building his imagination and reward his creativity. I'll bet there isn't a day without laughter with Owen. What a cute little story!