Potty training round one: diapers-1, potty-0

I am overdue for an update on our attempts to get the boys out of diapers this weekend. I don’t want to use the term “epic failure” persay, but it didn’t happen. At all. And I am resigned to the fact that for now, that is okay.

We gave it a go on Saturday morning, and were immediately met with resistance. When the child/ren refuse to even sit on the potty for more than a millisecond, nothing is going to happen there. I firmly believe the boys have to be comfortable with the idea of climbing up there before we can ask them to start trying to, ahem, put things in there. So the best we can do now is just encourage them to get up there and sit from time to time, without any pressure.

And honestly, I am okay with that. As much as I am tired of changing diapers all day long, I quickly remembered how debilitating it can be to go through the potty-training process. For the first week after Connor started, we couldn’t leave the house, I couldn’t focus on much of anything besides getting him to the bathroom ALL.THE.TIME. And there are just too many other things going on right now for me to be able to do that. I have to be realistic about my own abilities as their teacher right now, and this week was not the right week.

But maybe next week will be?? Connor is on Spring Break, which means I don’t have to load kids in and out of the car all week. We could, in theory, stay home the whole week. I guess I will do some soul-searching for the next few days and decide whether I want to try. Otherwise, it looks like my next free week to camp out and potty train won’t come until summer vacation…..

Oh, and I really want to just do one boy at a time. So much easier, I think. I hope. Who knows.

Time to bite the potty-training bullet

I love having twins, they are awesome and unique, and it still amazes me that one tiny little egg could form two such incredible little humans. But there are times that having twins is a major pain in the butt. And I’m thinking potty training is going to be one of those times.

We are going to give it a shot this weekend. We have to. The diaper diving has gotten excessive. When your son comes to give you a hug with the contents of his diaper smeared all over his hand…. well, that’s not cool. At all. So ready or not, let’s do this.

Now I know that everyone says you should just wait until the child/ren are ready. And I get that. I do. But sometimes the child still needs a push in the right direction. Take Connor, for example. He didn’t want to potty train, and it was looking like he would never want to. So we gave him a few little pushes in the right direction. Without pressuring him, we convinced him that A) 3 year olds are not allowed to wear diapers and B) he was about to outgrow his current size of diapers and they didn’t make a bigger size. Of course neither of these things were true, but maybe there are times in life when telling your child a little white lie or two isn’t the worst thing in the world.

And it worked. We picked a day about a month after he turned 3, said goodbye to diapers, and never looked back.

Tomorrow we are saying goodbye to diapers again (hopefully for the last time). And yes, I am playing a little mind game with the boys to get them ready. There is a field trip for Connor’s preschool on Monday, and I am telling Ben and Alex that they cannot go on the field trip unless they are big boys and use the potty. Tomorrow they get to wear underpants and start using the potty, and it is going to be fun and exciting, whoo hoo!

It is going to be a long weekend. I am not looking forward to this. I firmly believe the only way this will work is if they both train at the same time, and that’s where this whole twin thing becomes a very big challenge. What do I do? Take them both to the potty every 20 minutes, but on alternating schedules? I’ll be spending the whole day in the bathroom!!! We have a small toy potty and then the child seat for the big potty, so we could try both at the same time, but then I can just foresee them fighting over who gets to use which one, and madness ensuing. Either way, it is going to be interesting.

Wish us luck! If we are met with utter disaster, then we shelve the potty training for a bit longer. But if at least one of them can get on board, it will be completely worth it. All we can do is try and see…..

Lesson Learned…

I am always looking for good “teaching moments” in life, wherever we go, whatever we do. This particularly applies to Connor, of course, though I’m starting to do more with Ben and Alex too as their ability to comprehend grows. But today’s story is all about my eldest. Connor.24May2013

Yesterday we met up with a friend at the mall to play. There’s a great play area there that is enclosed, so I can let the boys run free, always a plus. There’s also a collection of those coin-operated rides there, which Connor loves. Granted, he won’t let me put any money in them to turn them on, that scares the you-know-what out of him, but he loves to climb into the rocket ship or racecar and pretend to drive. The rides were our last stop of the day, after the play area, a quick shoe shopping trip, and a quick lunch. I let Connor play for a few minutes, but I knew we couldn’t stay long as my two other angels were starting to fall asleep in the stroller.

As any parent knows, that moment when you tell your child it’s time to go is always a tricky one. I’ve used everything from trying to gain sympathy for tired brothers, to flat out bribery. Amazingly, this time the sympathy worked, and I was so thrilled when Connor came away willingly! So thrilled in fact, that I didn’t see him leave his blue sippy cup behind on the ride. We headed out to the car, I began loading up kids and gear, and that’s when I noticed I was short a cup. Sure we could have turned around and gone back for it, but the babies were tired, I was tired, and I had had enough of navigating three kids through the mall. So I decided to write it off as lost.

But I was also pretty annoyed with the situation. I had just bought new cups, and living on a tight budget, we can’t afford to be wasteful. I decided now was a great teaching moment, if you will, to learn about responsibility for your belongings. So I made it clear to Connor that I was disappointed we had lost the cup and that he needs to be more careful with his things, so that we don’t lose them, because now we could never get the cup back. It was a little bit of a guilt trip, yes. And it was a big mistake.

Like a light switch flipping on, the next thing I knew Connor was sobbing. He was beside himself, devastated that his cup was gone. He cried hysterically the whole way home, continued sobbing as we got in the house. I tried to calm him down, tried to reassure him that it wasn’t really the end of the world, that we had other cups, it was not a big deal… but to no avail. He was so upset that he took himself upstairs and to bed for his nap while I stayed downstairs to nurse the twins, and I could hear him crying in bed on the monitor. This from the child who will fight against his naps until he is blue in the face…

After I got the babies to bed, I went to talk to Connor, still crying in bed. I decided I would track down the cup after all, and I told him as soon as he went to sleep I would call the mall’s lost and found and get his cup back. This helped a little, but he still fell asleep a very unhappy boy. I headed back downstairs and got on the phone. I called the mall, got the number to security, called them. Nope, nobody had turned in a cup. So then I called my amazing and incredible husband, who fortunately hadn’t taken his lunch break yet, and asked for a huge favor… I quickly explained the situation, and could he please swing by the mall over lunch and see if he could find the cup?

Daddy saved the day! He found the blue cup, right where we had left it, and promised to bring it home with him that night. And it’s a good thing too because the second Connor woke from his nap, he asked me if I had called the mall. I’m so glad my son has inherited my ability to obsess!

Well lesson learned… but for me much more so than Connor. Next time, I will be taking a much more gentle approach in my reprimanding. Or better yet… I will double check the status of our cups before we leave!

The “awww” moment of the morning

Well, my car needs to go into the shop. There’s something wrong, the battery keeps dying. So in the meantime, we’ve moved all the car seats over to Alan’s car, and will be taking him to work, so that we aren’t stranded at home with an unreliable car.

This morning, after we dropped Alan off and were heading home, I pointed out the apartment complex where I used to live when I first moved to Colorado. I was talking to Connor about how I used to live there, and then how Daddy and I fell in love and got married and how then he came along, and then Alex and Ben came along, and how we were now one big happy family. And Connor tells me, “no, we aren’t one big happy family.” Say what?

So I said, “yes we are, why do you say we aren’t?”

“Because Daddy isn’t here.”

Awwwwww! What a sweetheart I have!