This past weekend we potty trained our son. He’s 2 years and 4 months old. Some say that’s late, some say that’s early but at this point if I never see another diaper again I’ll dance a fucking jig. At one point this weekend I turned to AFH and said, do you realize this is the first day in four and a half years we haven’t had to change a diaper?
Nobody tells you when you have kids that you’ll be cleaning up shit for YEARS. That’ll knock the romanticism of parenting right out of ya.
I’d done some reading in the week leading up to it to see how we could basically get this done in one weekend because it had taken months with our girl and I didn’t have the patience anymore. In all fairness, we did it while we also had a newborn with colic who wouldn’t sleep and demanded all of our attention so it’s a miracle that girl is not wearing diapers as a four year old. However, it still took a few months to get the job done and some joyous “pissing around the coffee table” afternoons. Just to make it clear – her, not us.
I bought big boy underwear for Oli on Friday and we tried a few times on Friday night before he went to bed. Saturday morning at 7:30 a.m. though, we said goodbye to that diaper, put the big boy pants on (literally AND figuratively) and AFH took Ruby out for some daddy/daughter time. I surrounded myself with bleach wipes, a bag for accident clothes, paper towels and new underwear with dinosaurs (his, not mine). Every five minutes for two hours I would ask Oli, “Do you need to go potty?” while staring at him to see any signs that that kid needed to go. That level of intense scrutiny on a child you haven’t had to do that with for MONTHS (because you know, they walk and stuff now), causing insane neck ache and stress headaches, makes you realize that that was the permanent state you were in when he was a baby. Plus you were sleep-deprived and you wonder how you didn’t just break down in a corner somewhere.
We had three accidents and two successes (where I gave this kid a new Hot Wheels car every time he was successful) and then I saw a light go on in this kid’s brain.
“Do you mean, if I go in this blue seat thingy, I get a Hot Wheels car every time? Sold! You guys are suckers!”
Once that kid realized he was getting a car every time (and I had to text AFH to stop by Target on his way back and get more) he went on the potty (even if he wasn’t sure and was just “trying”). And we didn’t have an accident from 9:45 on that first morning. AT ALL.
So here’s my advice. Find something your kid LOVES beyond reason, be it a doll that pees, cars or little toys they can open (Hatchimals are another good one and worked really well with our daughter). It’s hard enough potty training to also add candy into the mix and have your kid jacked up on sugar AND peeing all over the place so skip that. You’ll know if your kid is ready too – as soon as they start hiding to poop and are doing that happy/mad face in a corner you know it’s time.
Am I really going to be one of those smug motherfuckers who potty trained their child in a day!?
Technically no. After this weekend he’s still wearing diapers during naps and at night (we tried it without during Sunday’s nap time and it was a massive failure) which we’re fine with because, in the case of our daughter, a full blown potty trained child took another two months teaching her bladder control and not to go nuts with liquids at night. I’m fine with taking baby steps but I’m SO FUCKING PROUD of my baby for what he accomplished this weekend. It took 15 Hot Wheels to do it which costs a lot less than keeping him in diapers for the next six months.
Does it make me sad? Yes and no. No because I don’t have to buy diapers for too much longer outside of overnight ones. Yes, because my boy is not a baby anymore and the baby making factory is closed now due to money. And sanity. He’s my last one and both of them are growing up too fast. I know I’ll look back at this time and say, “They were so little” and conveniently forget all the hardships that come with raising two toddlers at the same time but that’s the bittersweet part to parenting. They grow up and don’t need you anymore which means you’ve done their job. The only thing I have left to say is to just enjoy every fucking day you have with your kids, even the pee-soaked ones, because it means that you got to experience the privilege of parenting which is priceless. – FemaleGG
ADDENDUM: The kid did so well on his first day back at daycare that they’re moving him up to the next classroom!!! Which means cheaper daycare!!! OK, only by $5 a week but it’s something and that, along with the not having to buy diapers anymore, assists our debt paydown journey. Every little bit helps!
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