Potty Talk

Many of you will find this post to be of absolutely no interest to you. Others, however, may think this is perfect timing for you, or at least something that you can come back to in a few months when you are ready to being some “potty talk” in your own house.

I mentioned in an earlier post that we were sorta potty training Daniel. This, of course, is a daunting journey for most parents (curses to you parents out there that had the kiddo fully trained in a weekend). He’s pretty much figured out the “gotta go” feeling, and during the day or evening, while at home, he is peeing 3-5 times in the potty!! I am utterly thrilled with this fact, especially since I understand that boys are much harder to train than girls. We’ve got to discover, however, how to transition this success to the outside world. As of now, he only goes in his potty, but he has major interest in the big potty, but just don’t try to get him to sit on it! He is also sitting to pee, so there is yet another changeover that we will have to make at some point. Being that he just turned 2 in November, I can see why those things seem a little overwhelming at this point. He’s even pooped in the potty a few times, but that seems to worry him a little after it has happened. From what I hear and read, this is normal too.

To help gear the kiddo up for the process or to encourage him in his attempts, I wanted to find him some videos that show or tell him what he needs to do. First off, I requested a free DVD from the Huggies folks. It has parent tips and such, but the best part are the songs that you can play for your toddler. Through this, Daniel learned the excitement of “wooshing” your pee down the potty. We had specific dance moves that we would do during celebration clips, after he had successes. With this being free, you can’t really go wrong, so if you are training or thinking about training, just go ahead and ask them to send you one. One downfall to this DVD is that you have to play each clip individually, so after a few seconds or a minute, you have to move on to the next one, for it will not just “play all.”

Another thing that I did was to explore YouTube for some teaching vidoes or fun potty clips. The best one, according to Daniel, is the Elmo potty clip. It has a catchy song and, well, it has Elmo!

I also hunted down some other appropriate clips for him to watch, and you can see those links below (please note, none of these are of the greatest quality, but they help to get the job done):

“Once Upon a Potty”

“The Potty Song”

“Super Duper Pooper”

There is a pelothra of videos that deal with toilet/potty training, but really, don’t waste your time looking for many more. Trust that I have done the looking, giving you most of the decent clips. There is a whole series of videos that contain a Japanese tiger who learns to pee in the potty, but it is all in Japanese. Therefore, unless your kiddo is fluent in that language (or he can read English subtitles) they will not really work for you. And, I have a caveat to share……make sure you preview all materials first. I know this is a classic rule for folks in the world of pedagogy, but after Daniel had viewed some of the cute, decent clips I had found, he kindly asked me to see more, hence I began to click on other “suggested videos” for him to see, which I had not viewed yet. A few started off fine: a digital baby goes to a toilet and begins to pee on it, only to be completely swallowed by a toilet with a menacing laugh. Daniel did not flinch or batt and eye at that clip, but I can’t imagine it was a good thing for him to see it.

Ses@meStreet.org is a great site full of neat games and videos for kids that I sometimes show Daniel. There are even “lap games” that you can play with your kid, such as a hide-and-seek game. These require no knowledge of what to click or when to click it. Instead, they allow a kid to partipicate when he or she touches any key on the keyboard. For example, Elmo hides and your child touches any key, he or she has automatically found Elmo. On that same site is a video that discusses stopping what you are doing and making sure you go to the potty. We have not watched this one too much, but I do think that it could be very helpful, especially if you are working on trying to break a toddler of accidents, rather than just beginning the potty training process.

A final helpful thing that I have come across, other than a few books (but those are pretty easily acessed), is a potty time DVD that I found at a consignment store for $3.00. Now that we have it, I would say that it would be worth buying it, even at full price.

So, there you have it: a mixture of potty training tools. If you know any other helpful materials or tips, please share them with me!

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Ouch!—That’s Some Perspective!

For starters, this day began way earlier than I had anticipated. Daniel had different plans for what time “wake up” time would be. Normally, our son is a sound sleeper that rises at an appropriate time. Today, however, he awoke at 5 AM, and I cuddled with him in his big boy bed, hoping he, and I, would fall back to sleep. I might have dozed for a moment, but there was no sound sleeping, that is for sure. As any mommy knows, this means the day will be a little difficult–for both of us.

I had some errands that needed to be taken care of, but I wanted to let Daniel pee in the potty before we took off on a trip to town, for I knew that “out and about” potty trips are not successful yet (we’ve been having major success at home though, which is wonderful!). Time passed and passed, and still no peeing in the potty—or anywhere else for that matter. I made him try, for I wanted to hit the road, and he would try, but there was no fruit for his labor. As the morning began to tick away, I decided that we were going to have to go out soon or we would hit his nap time, which normally would not be a huge deal, but with the early alarm this morning, I knew the opportunity for a public fit would greatly increase. So, pull-up on, we headed out.

For some reason, Daniel has in his mind which way our car should turn. Now, there is a 4-way stop near where we live, and if we go a certain direction, we fare towards specific places that he would enjoy (e.g.-a friend’s house, his grandma’s, his sitter’s, church, etc.) so it makes sense when he gets a little upset when we turn a different way than the one he wanted. Elsewhere in the world, however, I do not see how he should know or care which way we turn, yet he does at times……which can be very annoying. We can be in an area where he has never been before, and he will cry aloud and point a different direction, yelling “Go! Go!” Where that way goes, I have no clue, but in Daniel’s little mind, that is where we should be headed. Needless to say, each turn was the wrong one to Daniel today.

As soon as we got to our first stop, Daniel had already told me “uh-oh…..pee-pee potty,” which meant he was no longer dry. I was not mad at him, just frustrated that he and I could not enjoy a successful potty at home, complete with cheers and applause. As we went inside the building and into the restroom for a change, Daniel proceeded to whine and  pull away, for he is beginning to get a little upset at a potty mistake (which is a good sign, right?). We battled into the restroom and into the stall. He cried as I changed him, and I am tugging to keep him from trying to unlock the stall and dart out. I then decide that it is a good time for me to use the restroom, and I begin the duel to keep Daniel from trying to flush the toilet as I try to use it. Finally, we exit, mostly unscathed. Of course, we need to wash our hands now. I am beginning to feel extremely tired myself. I am after all growing a baby, as well as working off of a 5 AM wake up call. Daniel screams as I lift him to rub his hands with soap and clean them with water. Before I continue on to clean my own hands, I place him back down. He is standing near me, beginning to look under the stalls at the other ladies—a new favorite hobby upon entering a restroom.

I am cringing at what the middle-aged lady next to me, quietly washing her hands, might be thinking about me and my kiddo. Suddenly, the main door opens, and two more ladies enter, at the sight of which Daniel cowers in fear and screams “Ahh!!” at them, as if they were trying to touch him, look at him, smile at him…..something extremely terrible in his opinion, to say the least. To take some of the awkwardness off of Daniel’s screams, I say aloud “Don’t worry Daniel, they aren’t going to take you from Mommy.” After a brief pause, I follow it up with a little humor “And if they did, they would bring you back!” One of the receivers of the shrieks replies, “Yeah, I have enough with my own.” A few chuckles commence from the now crowded restroom. As I lean over to pick Daniel up to carry him out, n order to prevent any more “we should go this direction” type moments, the once quiet lady next to me turns and says,

“I’d take him…….we lost our little boy when he was his age…….I would definitely keep him.”

The lady and I are now looking eye to eye, and she looks teary-eyed just thinking about it. To be honest, those words hit me like a TON of bricks. I remember giving her a “my heart goes out to you” type of smile, but, oddly enough I can not recall if I opened my mouth and said anything back or not. My spirit had just been shot a rocket. Here I was, completely frustrated by my son’s behavior, wondering what others might be thinking and how I just wanted him to be quiet and still (a nearly impossible feat for a newly 2 year old, I know) and she was just longing to have her son back so that he could scream, cry, look under stalls, and wake up at 5AM in her presence. How extremely selfish of me!

Now that puts things into perspective.