The blessing and curse that is potty training

I hesitate to write anything about potty training. I’m afraid the three of you left, after listening to me blather on about it for the past year, might leave if I mention it again. However, this is more of a public service announcement to the rest of you with children yet to be potty trained.

As parents we pray for the day we no longer have to change diapers. Those babies are expensive. The diapers I mean. And we long for the days where we don’t have to search out the least nasty place to strip our child down and wipe their ass. Ahh the dream! How nice it must be for those parents who look at their angelic child and ask, “Johnny do you have to go pee-pee?” And little Johnny smiles at his mother and says, “yes mother. I do.” Don’t you want to smack them both. Here you struggle with the child who thinks a public toilet is the devil incarnate and will pee on your newly cleaned hardwoods as soon as his naked body reaches the hall outside of the bathroom because when you tried to put him on the potty he screamed like you were killing him by making. him. pee. on. a. toilet.

But then there comes that day. The day when your baby comes to you and says, “Go pee-pee standing like daddy does.” You jump on the opportunity. Thus begins your fateful journey into potty training.

However, lurking around the corner are the curses that are potty training. I’m not talking about accidents. It is so much more than that. Your child now thinks the toilet is Jesus himself. He luuurves the potty. He wants to fondle the pee riddled rim as he watches the fresh pee pee he just made go down the drain. He forces you to bid good-bye to his bodily waste as it swirls into oblivion. Then you repeat this horrid germ infested saga 4000 times a day. *Note to self: clean toilet more.*

Then you go out of the house. You’re safe. The kid hates public toilets. That’s ok! You have Pull-Ups. Of course being the fastidious parent you continue with the potty training. “Little boy, Mama has to go potty (and you wonder why the child still refers to himself in the third person). Do you need to go too?” “Sure,” his little voice proclaims. Cautiously you take him into the toilet. You model proper sitting technique despite your obvious lack of parts. Then, then you give the child a chance. Hells Bells! The kid did it. Of course now the child wants to use the toilet in every public place imaginable. Pull into the parking lot of your local mega bullseye store. “Go potty at Target,” you hear from the back seat. Every. fricken. place.

The worst is still to come. You see the kid is only pee trained. One day miraculously he will shed his disposable pants dependence and does what every mother dreams of. He poops. On the potty! You will cry. I did. You will kiss your son’s feet. Until you realize that your face is dangerously close to the aforementioned toilet rim.

Here is where the curse happens. Your child is now smarter than you. All but two of your braincells have died. This gives you a severe case of mommy brain. You know. It happens to the best of us. Your child also knows this. And he is going to use it to the best of his ability to milk it for all it’s worth. And he will do so at bedtime. “Mommy, I have to go pee pee.” Not wanting to discourage him and undo all the hard work you slaved over you oblige.” Piddle. You get him down and begin the PJ process. “Mommy, I have to go poop.” For the love of Gawd child you went twice already today. “But moooommmm, I have to pooooop!” Fine! A little toot. “I went poop!” You did not. Do you need to poop? “no.” “Mommy, I need a drink of water.” No you don’t, get in bed.

Be warned. This will happen to you too. And it will happen on a night when your husband is out of town (at a “work event” when you really know he’s at a scotch tasting).

12 Comment

  1. Lauri says: Reply

    we are celebrating being fully potty trained…. now if I can only get rid of the potty chair in the living room… that is our next hurdle. Livi is fine with the potty chair… the big potty… not so much.

    I feel like a chamber maid and cleaning out her little pot has got to go

  2. Tricia says: Reply

    Thanks for the laugh. You know your trials & tribulations as a mom is one of the highlights of my day?!

  3. Rhonda says: Reply

    Oh yes. Clyde does it ALL of the time. And when he’s mad now for being put in a timeout? He pees on the floor or in his pants. Just because he knows it drives us crazy. They’re smart little suckers. And the bedtime thing, too. That gets better once he gets a bit more control. But both of my kids still think they need to see the inside of every public bathroom (remember when we were having dinner at Girdwood? how many times did we take them in there?).

  4. Elle says: Reply

    Rhonda, I totally forgot about that! That was hilarious.

  5. Ohhhh….the fun. With sarcasm, I say, “I cannnnot wait.”

  6. We’ve encountered the bedtime procrastination. It is annoying! The first time Quin did it, I lost my patience and told him I wouldn’t read another story (we’d already read about 3), and that he needed to either finish or sit by himself. So he sat by himself. Eric went to check on him, and lo and behold! He had peed! All over the toilet! (We’re still working on the fact that penises point down.) And Dada got to clean it up! Yay for nursing at bedtime. We still have procrastination, but it’s getting better. You mean they’re supposed to learn how to poop too???? Oh, boy, do we have a ways to go! 🙂

    Congrats on the potty successes!!

  7. DebiP says: Reply

    ahhh but you see he is T.R.A.I.N.E.D. the ultimate goal archived…the bed time stuff is a momentary delay tactic that he and you will over come in about a month…hang on you are almost there….

  8. Carla says: Reply

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! Getting your child potty trained should be worthy of medals.

    The bedtime delay stuff? that will work itself out soon when he realizes it doesn’t really help. He’s smart, he’ll figure that out quickly.

  9. Jenny says: Reply


  10. I remember a time while my daughter was being potty trained when I knew the location of every bathroom in every store in the entire western world.

    And around here we sometimes still have to ask, “Do you need me to do a potty dance for ya?”

  11. Harlequin "King" Jetta says: Reply

    Thank you for the laugh! I desperately needed to laugh today.

  12. I’m about to start potty training my daughter. Thanks for making me feel like it can be fun, or at least fun-ny.

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