Let the games begin. After a successful removal of the pacifier from all daily life (except sleeping), we decided to embark on attempting to get Ezra out of diapers. Now before I go any further, a bit of full disclosure has to happen: I hate, and I mean hate, poop. For each and every diaper that I have changed on Ezra and Liam, there is some sort of massive displeasure and gagging that occurs. Liam didn’t seem to care about my reaction too much, but Ezra laughed at me each and every time. With this background, you can imagine that venturing into a world where I would have to do more than just throw away a poopy diaper…and actually clean something has proven to be rather daunting. The full disclosure part of this posting closes as I say that due to what you have now learned, Ahna has taken the lead on this project.
This all started out with some attempts at introducing the idea of going to use the toilet to Ezra. You see, for the nearly three years of his life, he has shown approximately zero interest in going to the bathroom anywhere specifically. As a matter of fact, he cares so little about it that he’ll just go wherever and whenever he needs to…so when he doesn’t have a diaper on, it doesn’t phase him one little bit (a good example a little later). So the concept of generating his interest in using the potty has been something that thus far has been the sticking point – we haven’t even gotten to all of the other normal sticking points to potty training (the sounds, the flush, sitting still, wiping, the responsibility, etc).
The one thing that Ezra does seem mostly interested in doing is wearing underwear. The simple summary of our methodology for the training is this (adopted from Peggy): skip pull-ups and go straight to underwear. Spend a few days doing nearly nothing but sitting on the potty every 15-20 minutes. By having underwear on, it will create the discomfort and they will at some point want to avoid being wet or otherwise. After three accidents in one day, go back to diapers and don’t make a big deal out of it. Sounds logical, caring, and something that we can handle. The only hiccup to the entire program is if/when the child doesn’t have any care to sit still or any interest to continue….enter Ezra. We know that we can push, but the last thing that we want to do is to create a negative vibe surrounding going to the bathroom.
Ahna began training Ezra late last week (10 days ago-ish) and it went fairly well for the first couple of days. Ezra would enjoy the Toy Story or Cars themed garments, and if he peed he would look up from playing and say ‘uh-oh’ before immediately returning to playing. Although there wasn’t any use of the potty, the two of them were able to work out a way that Ezra would wear underwear while they were home and sit on the potty for always increasing amounts of time. There was no revelation made, but there was steady progress. Until one day when Ezra realized that he was in fact 2.5 years old, and the testing began. Following a massive meltdown by both child (Ezra) and parent (me), we have made a few concessions: we will slow it down a little. We will try to hang out in underwear for a few hours each day or night and not push the issue too hard. We will work on gaining momentum in the ‘interest’ phase of this process. And finally, two of us will work on our patience a little bit (I’m not going to say who those two are, but Ahna is not one of them).
So it slowly continues. Some days are better than others, and some days we just don’t even try a little. In order to try to stay calm, I keep telling myself another piece of advice that Peggy passed along (after someone gave it to her many years ago): he’s not going to go to prom in diapers. Now if there was only a simple piece of advice that I could remember to get through dealing with the poop….