I have to start by saying that I am in awe of my little manchild.
I posted recently about some signs of readiness for potty training, but I am a firm believer in not pushing the issue until I’m reasonably sure the child is ready. The whole training process seems so much smoother this way. Smoother = less stress for the momma. I like less stress. Less stress is good.
And so on Saturday morning, when I casually suggested that he might sit on the potty and he peed in it I tried not to get too excited. He’s done it a few times before. Instead, I just praised him, gave him a couple of chocolate chips, and procrastinated about putting his diaper back on.
A few minutes later, I loudly announced that I had peed in the potty and was going to have 2 chocolate chips. Then I invited the rest of the household to do the same. Most of the girls were gone, but those who were present all took me up on the offer with an appropriate amount of fanfare. After all, who’s going to turn down chocolate chips in my house?
Then I gave the boy a cup of chocolate milk and repeated the process. He peed again. In the potty. Now I was excited.
Over the course of the morning, he had as many misses as hits and we spent nearly 3 hours straight in the bathroom – but he was interested and was actually having some measure of success. I kept filling him up with liquids, and setting a timer to remind him to go potty in 15 minutes 10 minutes 6 minutes. I got plenty of exercise lifting him onto the potty and holding him steady since he was bit unsure about balancing above the bowl. (Yes, he sits for now. Don’t remind him about the alternative just yet, please.)
Then finally, something clicked. He suddenly understood the control mechanism. I think it was the chocolate chips that did the trick. He figured out that he could…ahem…save some…
And so we spent the next 2 hours in the bathroom enjoying that little breakthrough: 6 drops, 2 chocolate chips. Jump off the stepstool, jump back on. 6 drops, 2 chocolate chips. Jump off, about face, jump on. Repeat. He finally was getting himself into position, and even better he was developing bladder control. In fact, his control was staggering, and I knew this was good practice. “It’s good practice, it’s good practice,” I muttered to myself the 9,000th time…
Finally, I decided HE HAD ENOUGH PRACTICE, and we left the bathroom.
And that was that. For the rest of the day, he took himself potty. He sometimes asked for potty candy, and sometimes forgot. He ran around with a bare bottom and t-shirt (“Please don’t put your pen** on the table, honey”) and had no more accidents that day. Bowel movements? One of those morning accidents was a bowel movement and he was thoroughly disgusted. He’s so careful now, he does all of his gas in the potty just to be safe. I’m ok with that. Are you kidding? I love that.
This post is part of Help For Growing Families, in the hope that other moms will find useful tidbit of info.