At this stage of parenting, I did not think I would ever think about potty training ever again. But recently I did.
I had one of those moments when you look at your kids and wonder when it all happened? When did they grow so big? When did they grow into a young adult?
It happens right in front of your eyes and yet, it’s still a shock to the system.
One minute they are small enough to carry in a pouch, the next they are tall enough to almost stare you in the eyes.
Last week I was ordering new underwear online for our oldest boy. Medium briefs!? No superheroes, no trucks, just plain-coloured, boring underwear. It seems like yesterday I was buying a bulk pack of size three Spider-Man undies.
Then even before the confirmation email from Amazon hit my inbox, I was taken back to the days of why we needed those tiny undies in the first place.
The long weekend that I was potty training our first child using a three day bootcamp friends had shared with us.
After yesterday’s tug on the heart strings, I figured I would give my sister-in-law’s makeup a break today. There is a lot to laugh at when you have kids, especially when they are just learning to do something for the first time.
Charlie is doing awesome with his potty training and I have to give all the credit to his daycare. They have him pretty much done. He goes days and days without an accident and wearing underwear. It’s great.
At home, it took a little longer for him to want to use the potty, but he is now doing it. The hilarious part is, he does not like attention, help or anyone around basically. He loves the peace and quiet of going when he wants.
It will be dinnertime and Charlie has since left the table and you assume he is playing. Then Harry will go look for him and he can’t be found in any of the play spaces. We call out for Charlie. Then a little voice is heard from the second bathroom. Yep, he is in their sitting on the toilet having a pee.
He does not want help getting up there, getting down or putting his underwear back on. It’s hard not to laugh when he comes back all proud and is wearing his underwear so wrong.
Now, it’s not always a success in terms of a clean situation. Sometimes he just goes on the floor next to the toilet. Sometimes he does not make it. Sometimes he goes to have a poop, drops a number 2 and then tries to clean himself up, getting poop all over himself and the bathroom. It’s a process.
The point is, he is following through with the actions. He is no longer just smiling at us and peeing anywhere he stands. You know that mischievous little smile.
Another mystery that was not solved for days, we have been calling the case of the missing diaper. Charlie still wears pull-ups for nap and over night. It’s not fair for him to have to lay in wet underwear while sleeping. So one day on a weekend, Charlie had his usual nap. I put him to bed in a clean diaper.
Katie went in later on to wake him up and he was sleeping naked and the diaper was nowhere to be found. We looked all over the room and nothing. For a split second I even considered that he ate it.
We let it go for days wondering what happened to this diaper. Then the obvious hit us. He must have taken it off and put it in the diaper pail like he has seen his parents do a million times. Again, great work Charlie.
Is it fun sitting on a wet spot on the couch? Of course not. But when you are potty training a kid, you have to expect things like that to happen. Your only hope is things progress to a point of all pee and poop go into the toilet.
Yes, last night we totally forgot that Charlie was wearing underwear instead of a diaper. The result of course, a wet spot on the couch. He was more than happy to sit there and not say a thing.
Potty training our second boy has been much different from the first time around. As I have discussed before, the potty training this time is in reverse. He is a dry guy at daycare, but not into it at home. Every time we ask Charlie if he has to go, or wants to go, he simply gives us a stern NO.
He comes home from daycare in underwear and the evenings have been hit or miss with accidents. Charlie either let’s it fly or just holds it until bath and bed time.
We have yet to figure out a way to get him to go near the toilet in our house. I don’t want to force him while he is screaming because that could make him never want to do it again. When Harrison was potty trained, he was older and much more vocal. He simply told us he was either peeing or had to pee. This was much easier on the tired parent brain.
For now, we will probably continue to forget in the evening and let nature take charge. The next few weeks we have to help Charlie understand that he simply has to communicate in some way to us. But honestly, would you stop playing a video game to go to the bathroom or just go where you sit?
I also must share that when Katie took him away to clean up last night, there was an extra special gift that no parent wants to find in the underwear. Yeah, ew.
The good news in all of this is that where Charlie spends most of his time (daycare) he is doing awesome. They are proud of him and very supportive. It makes me a little jealous that our support is not having the same results.
We will keep on trying. We know it will click soon. We will try to not forget about Charlie wearing underwear on the couch. That is our mission.
You really want to hit a parent where it hurts? Take away the luxury of a working PVR. Our’s in on the fritz and can really be a pain when you finally get to sit down and then you can’t watch what you had been dreaming of. Yes I know, third world problems.
When you have two kids, try to have two muffins when it is breakfast time.
Charlie says hi to everyone we pass on the street. Including the mannequins in the wedding dress store we go by.
We are back on Thomas the Train when it comes to what the boys watch. Charlie calls it CHOO CHOO.
Excited for a FAMILY visit next week. That’s you MS.
I need to share a major burn that Katie dropped last night. Charlie was being a jerk at dinner and the prospect of a time out was mentioned. Charlie kept pushing. Then Katie said “I am not Dwayne Casey, I am not afraid to use a timeout“. It was so timely and perfect. That’s my wife.
First thought about the topic of this post based on the title? Ah I know what you are thinking and you are close. I am referring to a certain game of thrones called potty training.
But instead of the messy details of poop and pee, I am referring to the difference between potty training kid two and kid one.
Anyone who knows us, knows the story of potty training our first son. The story has reached legendary status as it includes the grand prize of my Big Green Egg. I am not here to rehash that major achievement on my dad resume. I am here to talk about the process of potty training our youngest, who is 29 months and counting.
The first time, we did a 3-day hardcore bootcamp that I have written about before. It was a grand success. Harry came home from daycare on a Friday and went back on a Tuesday, pretty much trained.
This time, the process has been reversed and Katie and I are playing catch up. Our daycare is awesome. We love everything about it. They even take on the task of potty training. This is the first daycare we have gone to that does this. Amazing.
The trick is, while they are having success with Charlie, when he comes home, he has no interest in continuing. Before, it was the focus for a weekend and it was “easier” because it was all that was on the agenda. Now, we don’t know how to fit it into our daily routine.
Charlie is not a big talker yet, so it makes it hard for us to pick up on when he needs to go. He also seems to really like falling back into diaper mode when at home. A power play for sure.
Before we got rid of all diapers and never went back. Now, it’s a mish mash of diapers and underwear. Charlie is doing great. They are pretty proud of him at school and of course we are as well. It’s on us now to make it all happen at home.
Treats worked the first time around as rewards. This time, Charlie is much younger and does not understand that the treats are a reward for doing something. He just wants to get treats, no questions asked. Picture him climbing up on the toilet and calling it a day, waiting for a treat. Then we there is no treat, he has a freak out. We have to revisit this idea I think.
Now we go with books or even video games to keep his interest while on the toilet.
The first time around it was on a weekend and I stayed home literally for three days. But with daycare and all the going in and out of the house, it’s hard to fit the toilet training in. There have been accidents and it can make for a messy or stinky walk home.
Harry has been doing his best as big brother to help. He asks Charlie if he wants to go and even shows him what to do. It’s pretty cute.
Number two is a work in progress and we just have to figure out a plan and stick with it. I think Charlie is going to pick it up fast, his parents just need to do the work.
I have to say, I am pretty excited to be done with diapers. So many different motivations. The most important being the next stage of boyhood for our Charlie.
For parents with at least two kids, did you find a difference potty training each? What were some of the challenges?
All parents say this (they should), my boys are pretty amazing. Every day they do something that makes me think wow, this parenting thing is working.
My wife and I certainly wonder sometimes if all the hard work and routine get into the brains of our two little boy monsters.
Seems to be.
Boy 1, the preschooler, is day time potty trained and has been for several months, but he still wears pullups to bed. He is starting to get there for sleeping through night. More often than not, he is dry in the morning and has fallen into a routine of peeing right before bed and pretty soon after getting up.
This morning after changing a dry pullup, he marched into the bathroom (no light needed) and had a good two-minute pee. That kid is learning.
Then, we go to say good-bye to mom for the day and I learn that boy 2, the baby, has just woken up for the first time since before midnight.
That is two nights in a row for an all night doze.
Are we celebrating? Well, not out loud. The kids will hear us and quickly shake things up. In our heads, a dance of joy.