Potty Training - Take One
I like being a mom. I like snuggles and hugs and kisses. I like reading books together on the couch. I like sweet-smelling baby heads. I like little toes and squishy tummies. I like special outings together to the park or library. I like coloring with my little girl on a Saturday afternoon. There are lots of things to like about being a mommy.
However, there is one thing that torments me. There is one thing that makes me want to run as far and fast as I can in the other direction. There is one thing that fills me with more dread than getting a cavity filled. There is one menacing thing about motherhood that sends cold chills down my spine. There is one solitary thing that cheap little old me would pay gobs of money to avoid. POTTY TRAINING.
Luke is now well on his way to being 2 1/2 years old, and the potty issue has been brought up by people for several months now. Whenever it is mentioned, I just give a quick answer to avoid the question and push the whole thing to the back of my mind. But that feeling of dread is rising as I know that I cannot avoid this forever.
A couple of days ago, we tried potty training for about 18 hours, including the 9 or so hours he was asleep. Let's just say the whole experience did nothing to allay my fears. He was so excited about his "Boody-Buzz" (Toy Story) potty seat and didn't put up too much of a fuss about sitting on it for 20-25 minutes at a time with about a 5-7 minute break in between. We made it so fun - reading books, singing songs - the whole thing. We promised Cheez-Its as soon as any tee-tee emerged. It was all smiles...until he got down off the potty after a 30-minute stint on it and promptly made his was into a corner of Maddie's room, flooding her toy box and carpet with all the lovely fluids we'd been pumping into his tiny little body. Seriously? In addition to being detrimental to my happy potty attitude, it put a serious dent into environmental health since I had to use about 63 paper towels to sop up the pee before I could even begin using rags and carpet cleaner.
Why, oh, why did our builder think it was a good idea to cover 75% of our floors with carpet? Couldn't he foresee all the whining and headaches that would plague this poor potty-training mama? If only we had hardwoods. Instead, if this kid ever does get potty-trained, we will be donating a large portion of our income to our friend the carpet cleaning man.
After I got tired of cleaning soaked carpets and an unsightly stain on our couch, we decided to use the very wise and responsible method of sitting him in front of the tv on an old towel on the floor and letting him rot his brain for a few hours...in between potty runs, of course. We set the handy dandy kitchen timer to go off every ten minutes. At the lovely sound of high-pitched beeping, I would groan and retrieve our toddler, whose brain was quickly turning to mush, and tote him off to see "Boody-Buzz." At this point, everyone's enthusiasm was waning. We'd do a short stint on the potty, to no avail, then reset the timer and replant his underwear-clad booty back on his towel. We did this for what seemed like days, but was actually about an hour and a half. Then, after one such episode where he spent at least ten minutes on the potty, our sweet, adorable little Lukey returned to the living room, stood about six inches to the left of his old towel, and peed (how do you even spell that, anyway) on the carpet.
At that point, this wise, dedicated mother full of grace, determination, and perseverance proceeded to march into her beloved child's room, retrieve a diaper and enjoy the rest of the day free of urine-soaked carpet, stinky underwear, and constantly shrieking kitchen timers. The only damper on the remainder of our Friday was the dark cloud looming in the distance - reminding me that first grade teachers generally frown upon having to change diapers. Maybe I should consider homeschooling after all...