So I brought her plastic potty up from the basement, and we had a nice little talk about it. She wanted to sit on it right away, so I took off her diaper and said, "You can go pee if you want!"
She sat for a while, kicking her legs, happily looking around the bathroom. A few moments passed. "Ah done," she announced, hopping off.
Nothing was inside the little potty, so clean-up was easy. We went into our bedroom so I could fold some clothes. Being the exceptional parent that I am, I left her diaper off thinking I could read her body language if she had to go at some point.
Well, she had body language alright. As I was off in La La Land, thinking of what a nice break it would be to not have diapers until the new baby came, I looked over at Little Olive. I was in the middle of folding a towel, and she was in the middle of leaning over, pooping on the hardwood floor.
"Oh no!" I exclaimed, rushing to get a wash cloth. Maybe this is a bad idea...
After cleaning up, I figured we'd just stick to our old ways. I told her to go get a new diaper, and she did right away. As she walked to the other side of the room where they were, she stopped in her tracks and looked at me, quite seriously.
I looked right back.
"...What are you doing?" I asked, nervously, going over to check.
Sure enough, she was standing in a fresh puddle of her own pee.
Oh, we are SO not doing this yet, I decided.
That was a month ago. Then today, I received a Baby Center e-mail with a great-sounding plan about potty training in 3 days or less. It certainly sounds very tempting. Little Olive is quite bright - she's very advanced, after all. I started to wonder if I should attempt the potty training process again.
But then... I keep reminding myself what I decided long ago about potty training. I've felt this way since before having kids, and it probably stemmed from working at the day care. In the toddler rooms, parents started training their children before (in my opinion) they were really ready. Experts say this is the perfect time, though. The kids will eventually learn and that accidents will happen and everyone just deals with the messes and mistakes.
I know a lot of moms who start this process around 18/19 months, and sometimes the toddlers pick up on it right away! Wow, I give them so much credit - both the parents and the kids. It seems like it would take a lot of patience to try that young. It's very impressive, and I mean that with all honesty. If you try it at this time and it works, treat yourself to ice cream - because you guys deserve it! As for me, I don't think I'll be attempting this for a while, and here's why:
- I would really rather change a diaper and have that be what's expected, than expect my child to go on the toilet and end up changing her whole outfit instead.
- I feel like I would be focusing a lot of time and attention on this training, and I'd be missing out on other things that Little Olive understands and enjoys at her age. I'd become frustrated and stressed out, and there would be unnecessary, negative emotions that I could only blame myself for.
- Several well-respected women in my life (including my mom) have said they didn't really "potty train." When their kids came closer to 3 years old, the children themselves decided they were done with diapers, and very few accidents happened after that. It sounds like my kind of plan.
- We're expecting a new baby in less than two months, and whatever training I have done this summer most likely will go out the window. Little Olive is going to need extra love and attention when the Baby arrives, and I'd rather cuddle her with a diaper than spend those moments rushing to the potty.
Now I'm curious: when did you start potty training your children? Did it "work" - meaning, were they completely trained at that time? What techniques did you use? Do you wish you had done something different? Share your advice below. :)