Friday, February 7, 2014

The Potty Wars: Episodes IX and X The Never Ending Story

Even with 2 decades of parenting under my belt, I remain a mere Padawan about the means by which one housebreaks a toddler. Somehow, eight of them mastered the basics of personal hygiene despite my best efforts. The problem of getting non rational beings to control their bladders and bowels rest squarely in the arena of getting them to take their first step into a larger universe, but I seem to have only birthed Han Solos.

Yesterday, my older of the youngest two, had unsolicited victory. Twice. Once at his pre-school, once at home. I thought, "This is it! He's got it!" "We got lucky." my husband posited, "it's the only explanation for the ease of this experience." I shook my head, "You call that easy?" We've been at this for years. Foolish woman that I am, (and yes, ever hopeful), I went out immediately and purchased Starwars 4T underwear and boy pull-ups for the young Jedi. I hoped to prove to their father the power of this fully operational toddler.

Daringly (and proof I've yet to learn squat about squatters squatting in my two decades of managing minors), I acquired Hello Kitty panties and pink psuedo diapers for my three year old daughter as well. Lastly, I grabbed a bag of M&M's as a reward for successes. I didn't hear Admiral Ackbar's warning, "It's a trap!"

My son liked his underwear. But he wasn't in it for the revolution or for me, he was in it for the candy and equated it with peeing and not where you pee. So much so, we went through the whole 7 pack of underoos in about three hours. I put him in pull ups, determined not to lose ground. All I lost was my patience and a few overpriced disposable nappies to his happy kidneys. I found him in the kitchen later, having sweet talked an older sister into breaking out the candy for a snack. "This is for toilet training! These are not the snacks you're looking for, move along!" I explained. My expression must have given a signal of scary Darth Maul Mom, as she immediately put the treat back and muttered something about having to do homework before vanishing to her room. My son just looked at me with his sweet blue eyes and ecstatic smile as he revealed the chocolate had indeed melted in his mouth.

But, I thought, there's always "Sister." and went to introduce her to the new world order. My daughter has always been something of an imperial soul. Despite being the youngest of a large horde of people, she commands attention and her words are often treated as law. She finds their lack of obedience disturbing. She owns two stuffed kittens owing to her expressing a love of felines. I thought Hello Kitty the perfect segway to bring her out of the diaper set and into the toilet trained. I forgot that like the creatures she favors, she remains forever aloof and fickle. Seeing my intent, she put her hand out and said, "Stop. No. I don't want Hello Kitty. No Kitties. No underwear." She brought me a diaper. "Maybe we could try it later?" I offered. "No. Never." she announced, but I heard, "You're far too trusting." and something akin to "I'll never join you. Never!"

So now I sit with a pile full of unused underwear tucked in her drawer, hoping one day she'll reconsider her edict, and a pile of dirty laundry proving my perpetual hope against experience. Teaching them the ways of the force would require I "let go." In the meantime, I remain at the beck and call of two undomesticated ewoks. 

Cursing my internal Yoda, I took the load to the wash and did the only thing I could do, hope that one day my young apprentice would one day be a master, eat the M&Ms and pray the sequels to this episode would be less painful, but come soon.

1 comment:

J said...

I love it!! I am about to attempt potty training, and think I may hold off just a bit - she just turned two. Am I a little to eager to get rid of those dang diapers? ha ha ha Good luck! :)

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