Potty Training is Crap
According to babycenter, my kid is so ready to potty train:
Dry for two hour periods, like during naps: Yes!
Dislikes feeling of being in dirty diapers: Yes!
Demonstrates desire for independence: Yes! Yes! Yes!
So, why do I want to crawl under the rock of parental failure and rethink my entire existence as someone's mother?
In the week since we began our "elimination" odyssey we've crashed into the pee-soaked valley of potty despair too many times to count and Hudson, forlorn, is mostly back in diapers.
"Then he's not ready," a friend said, when I presented her with my dilemma.
The dilemma: I AM SO READY for him to potty train. I do not want to change one more sloppy, oozy man-poo seeping from my toddler's gauzy undergarments.
"He IS ready," I said. "He understands!! I AM READY."
I made the decision to toss the diapers last week when my boy, not one to suffer in silence (just like his mother), was in the bath, wailing and kicking and wincing from the pain of a diaper rash.
"Sweetheart, love," I said in my tenderest tone, "it's time to wear big boy underwear so the bad bacterias in your stinky poo don't eat away at your small tushy."
He looked up at me with pain in his blue eyes and said, "okay, mommy, no more diapers."
Score! I thought to myself.
The two of us were almost giddy - me because mission "stink-be-gone" was about to commence and he because the "bigboyunderwear" had a crane on it! And for five minutes, my boy was almost cooperative. He only ran away from me four times while I put on his new underpants!
The euphoria didn't last long.
Whereas Hudson usually has dry diapers overnight, he had soaked his pants twice before falling asleep and (he did actually wake up dry) let a stream of yellow spray wild and free onto my marital bed when he greeted Ted and me in the morning.
By noon, he had wet himself twice and refused to pee in the teeny toilet at school while also refusing to wear a diaper.
"Mommy said there are no diapers for three year olds," he told the teacher, when she tried to put one on for naptime. "Your mommy said you could wear one for nap," she told him. His answer: "Daddy told me there are no diapers for three year olds."
Clever and true.
In the days since, there have been fits and starts. More fits than starts. And, I've twice broken the cardinal rule: don't yell or get angry at your kid during this process.
That is almost impossible.
On Saturday, at my parents' house, after lots of talk about putting his pee in the potty when he feels it coming, of how staying dry is the better way, of how he'll get smarties if he goes, a toy if he does it a couple of times, a pony if he wants one, I tried to take him to the bathroom.
He hadn't peed for a whole 30 minutes and I knew we were tempting fate. "Let's run to the potty quick!" I said.
"No," he whined. "I don't want to."
"Why? Come on!" I begged.
Grrrr. "Hudson stop it! You have to!" He went limp when I tried to lift him and threw a tantrum. "Why are you doing this to ME?" I shouted.
Perhaps this isn't about me? It is, however, a milestone: the first of many power struggles to come, I'll bet.
Now it's Thursday. Since last week I have spent about $100 on big boy underpants (seems we need 600 pairs to train in), laundry detergent, extra pants he can pull up and down all by himself, socks and an additional pair of shoes (because pee goes down that far, the teachers tell me).
And, I walk around with a giant plastic bag filled with smarties (one for him, two for me). For now, we only wear big boy underpants at home and he gets a treat every 10 or 15 minutes if he's dry.
"I'm dry!" he gleefully shouts.
"It's only been 30 seconds since your last chocolate," I say dryly.
Our journey continues.