I’ve never talked about poop so much.
Who knew that potty training could bond you with total strangers? People you were only acquaintances with now text you like you have been BFF’s for years. This is the magic of potty training.
And by magic I mean….I touched poop with my bare hands. More times than I ever thought I would. Just throw the underwear away you say? Yes, that would have been a better choice, but then I would have thrown them ALL away and Lord knows those Star Wars undies aren’t cheap at Target. Oh and also I’m pregnant soooooo my gag reflex was ON POINT. Also, I kept forgetting to buy disposable gloves becaaaaaause that’s usually not next on my list after “bananas” on my grocery list. Also prego brain. FAIL.
Anyway….I tried to pick up some helpful tips from others who have journeyed this road before me. I ended up in an Instagram/email/facebook/text explosion where we all shared methods and tricks and briberies and prayers and failures and it was AWESOME. (we should seriously use potty training as a template for building lasting friendships.)
Some of the tips worked for me and others didn’t. For example….
- Tip #1: When child ravages underwear, turn inside out and use the pressure of the toilet water to clean off ravaged underwear and flush.
- Reality #1: Turns out the water pressure in my toilet doesn’t care about my needs and left me standing there smearing poo directly onto it’s porcelain walls. Cool. Now I have no extra hands with which to clean the toilet or the naked poo bottom running from me like a freed zoo animal to my beautiful couch because the two hands I DO have are trapped inside poo panties inside a dirty toilet. *gags
- Tip #2: Don’t lose your patience.
- Reality #2: pfffffffffff
- Tip #3: Two or three days of total failure doesn’t mean you’re ACTUALLY failing.
- Reality #3: Despite the absurdity of how that sounds, it actually ended up being strangely true. All of a sudden after an entire week of despair, my son pooped in the potty like he’d been doing it his whole life. WHAT? HOW? All it took was consistency…..AND me singing a song I made up about poop to spur him on in the heat of the moment. It was like magic. Eventually my husband got in on the action too and now, as a fairly regular event, you can hear some combination of us chanting like maniacs in the bathroom about poop while my son feels like the king of the world. Whatever it takes you guys.
I haven’t changed a real diaper in 3 months now and I’m not even sure what to do with my free time.
Oh wait, that’s not true. All the time you free up is now spent shuffling your child from the table/shopping cart full of groceries/restaurant/park/classroom/church service/carseat to the potty in a panic. You now pull off the road like you’re being chased by the FBI to let your kid out to pee. Or you whip into a gas station from 1975 because going potty is now worth the risk of a convenience store bathroom STD. You start to miss the days where your kid just sat in a soiled diaper until you felt like dealing with it. This is also when you start to lose touch with reality. Why did we do this to ourselves?!!!
Answer? Because ultimately being a parent is not about my convenience. Good parenting, in my opinion, means you set your kids up for a win in life. Learning to use a bathroom like a normal member of society is a pretty basic milestone as a human being. Yes, it’s a lot of work for you up front. But how many incredible things in life just happen automatically? Zero.
I’m tired. I’m dirty. I’m always out of hand sanitizer now. But mostly, I’m proud of my son for learning and doing a great job. It’s so helpful to share the horror stories and learn to laugh at ourselves in the midst of the crazy, but in the end the greatest accomplishment is being there for your family, learning to do life together and watching your kids blossom into real people. It’s amazing.
I wouldn’t trade it. In fact, we are going to start all over in a few months with boy #2! Worth it. Even if I do have poop on me.
What are some of your potty training stories?!
real stories | real life