July 23, 2018

natural progression AFTER a toilet topper?

Like the kitchen nonsense, I have kept this bottled up for too long.  It was just hard to know where to start.  I mean, I love the big boy chap-stick story, but there are so many other top-notch tales - oh, this is the same woman responsible for casting the wide net for a teen sitter.  This is one of my favorites:

Potty training 101.  Um, I am going to throw it out there.  I am a master at potty training.  If you are envisioning me taking a bow, then you are right on the money.  My kids were all trained by the time they were 18 months.  Well, maybe that was more me being trained and offering them constant reminders - but they knew what the expectation was.  Prior to age 2 it wasn't even a thought process.  They were trained.  

I have used my skills to get the kids in my care in the habit of using the potty, too.  Theo was turning 2 when he first came here in fall of '15.  Geraldine mentioned to me that they occasionally put Theo on the potty before his bath and he sometimes peed.  I created the habit after he ate and at nap time.  No brainer.  I was changing his cloth diaper anyway.  He got the hang of the pee pretty quickly.

The kid wouldn't poop on the potty.  Over Christmas break, Geraldine worked at training him to do it.  She texted me that she had a toddler potty that she was planning to leave at my house for Theo to use.  Great.  That plan worked.  

I will share that this kid tended to be on the loose side.  ALWAYS.  Once his gut started to hurt he told me he had to get to the potty.  Timing was a little dicey.  Thanks to his runny issues - he didn't always make it.

Towards the end of the school year, Geraldine informed me that they were trying to get Theo to start using the big potty more.  It hadn't occurred to me that the little potty was probably ready to be retired.  It made sense.  I stuck the little potty out in my garage.  

Geraldine failed to mention that Theo REFUSED TO POOP ON THE BIG POTTY.  I thought she was just taking a gradual approach.  I didn't recognize that her kid had an unhealthy attachment to the tot potty.  I was only watching her boys 3 days a week at the time, so it didn't dawn on me that Theo NEVER pooped on the big potty.  

The day the tot potty moved out to my garage, Theo told me that he had to poop.  I put him on the big potty and he peed.  Then he announced that he didn't have to poop.  When Geraldine picked him up, he was anxious to get home.  Apparently he was holding it in, so he could use his little potty.  

She called me later to question why I had put the little potty in the garage.  Theo had ratted me out for something that I considered standard operating procedure.  She explained his 'issue.'  Oh, brother.  I asked her how they ever went anywhere.  'We wait until after he has pooped to leave the house, because he usually goes in the morning.' 

Why was I surprised that these fools had allowed this to happen?  He had been potty trained for several months - like close to 6 months.  

Credit to Target for image of toilet topper.
 This one doesn't fold. 
Use your imagination and
then guess how bummed I
 am that I don't have one of these
things stuffed in my purse.
The next day Geraldine called me from Target.  'Um, so I am looking at toilet toppers and I wondered if you would like me to get one for you.'  Such a generous offer, it was hard to turn down,  First of all, what the Hell is a toilet topper.  Apparently it could fold up and I could keep it in my purse so that I could put it on a big toilet.  It was her hope that Theo would be more comfortable with it.  Hard, 'NO!'

I told her to stop.  No toilet toppers.  No little pottys.  Just stop.  Tell him he needs to use the big potty.  The end.  He will never go to preschool if this continues.  

Credit to 'You tube' for the photo.
At my house over the next few days, I offered Theo LOTS of grapes at lunch.  I instructed my kids to perform jumping jacks with him in the family room after school.  As soon as he got the urge, his face got very stressed out.  He would try to get into a head stand position.  Butt up - keep the poop in, I imagine was his thought process.  

Eventually he had no choice.  To quote the bride in the movie bridesmaids after getting food poisoning, 'It's happening!'  Theo was sad about it, but I was large and in charge.  'You are sitting on the potty and pooping like the big kids.  Nothing to cry about.'  

And that, is how Theo began to poop on the big potty.  Hold the toilet topper and the mother enabler to the side please and let the expert take over.  

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