These are My Confessions Volume 2
For those of you who know me this probably comes as no surprise. I am confessing about totally failing at potty training. I also confess that I have never read a book or really prepared much for motherhood. I blame it on denial, which was real.
For the most part, nearly five years in, things have worked out, aside from aforementioned toilet training.
As a new mom and as a ‘right now’ mom I have shied away from following a specific parenting philosophy or even really dipping my pinky into different schools of thought. I expected and hoped for things to just come naturally. Create as little stress as possible for us as parents or him as child by expecting or mandating that things happen at a certain time or a certain way. It has been great. I don’t think I would really change any thing majorly if we did it all again.
Momo has reached all the major milestones. At four years old he is exceeding our expectations of what a little kid can or should be doing. I say this fully acknowledging that as his parents we are biased. All of his accomplishments to date though are over shadowed by his negligence when it comes to consistently using the toilet. His lack of bladder control and recent disregard for using the toilet for #1 AND #2 has been heightened now that school is in session and maybe because his schedule is new and different. This year he is attending one school for half days Monday, Wednesday and Friday and then full (long) days Tuesdays and Thursdays. Should I blame my own desire to give him a diverse and broad yet slightly high maintenance school schedule?
I look at friends who have blocked their schedules and canceled plans to allow for dedicated full on potty training as if it were the Boston Marathon. They commit to shifting their mental space, actual space and time to train and commit to a specific long weekend so they can dedicate every minute to toilet training. As for us, we definitely did not do that. We took a portable tiny toilet with us in the car as we were on our way up to hike Dog Mountain. All in a five hour hike.
I totally get where we missed in this key developmental milestone. The hike alone probably sums up our level and degree of potty training. Yes there were m&ms, marshmellows, chocolate chips etc. But the bribing from the early stages even til now has not really worked. He was 99% potty trained this summer and I hope that the regression is just because he is still connecting to his routine. So we will continue with the routine reminders of ‘time to go’ or ‘do you have to go’ cause I am not sure what else to do.
I recently listened to Esther Wojicki on the GOOP Podcast (insert eyeroll). Her episode is entitled ‘How to Raise Successful People”. She said something that resonated with me because it is something I naturally remind myself again and again. She said that people come to her with a concern that their 1 year old is not walking yet. What can they do, what aren’t they doing, why is it not happening yet? She reassures them with the simplest response. She says: I assure you they will learn to walk and one day they will learn to drive. I keep that perspective with me. I don’t worry about the little things and am amazed by the big things. However, using the toilet is a BIG thing. I know he will get there I am simply annoyed by the inconvenience!
Are your kids full on potty trained at nearly 5 years old? Is this a ‘boy’ thing? Any further ideas or suggestions for us to explore?