It’s summer. He’s 2 and 2 months. I’m home. He’s home. So naturally, I’ve been working on potty training Jacob.
When I say working on potty training, what I really mean is, I’ve set him on the pot a total of 4 times in the last month hoping he’ll have success. Mostly, I’m working on it by talking to him about it.
And when I say talking to him about it, what I really mean is, every time I change an unusually nasty diaper, I mention to him that since he is such a big boy, he could really go potty in the toilet next time.
So really, the “potty training” has consisted of me telling Jacob – several times in the last few weeks – what a good idea it would be for him to go potty like a big boy and hoping he figures it out for himself.
No luck so far.
I know, shocking.
I’m holding out, though. For a little while at least. Because I’m not new to this parenting thing, you know. I was a master, a master, at training Annalise.
It pretty much went like this:
- 5 months pregnant. Plan to potty train 2-year-old before baby boy arrives.
- Take advantage of 2-week Christmas break. PERFECT! Because Christmas break is not busy at all, and anyone can potty train a 2 year old in 2 weeks time while starting and finishing Christmas shopping, baking, packing, traveling, and staying with family out of town. NO problem.
- Use the first day of break to cover the carpet in hospital pads, set up the potty chair, play games and take “potty breaks” while reading books about potty training. On hand: stickers and star chart, treat rewards (m&ms), and big girl panties. Mine, I mean, because they’ll be needed later when I have to put ’em on and deal with it.
- Begin the day calmly, but keep the “potty mood” exciting! This is BIG GIRL stuff going on here!
- By afternoon, take a nap at nap time because, well, I’m worth it. And because seriously, I’m working a heck of a lot harder at this potty training thing than she is.
- By bed time, finish off the m&m rewards and go to bed less than thrilled about the lack of success. No worries, though. There is always tomorrow.
- Day 2: Begin the same as Day 1. Give up after the first accident because 5-month-pregnant-gag-reflexes are on overload and frankly, you don’t want to deal with bigger messes than this.
- Sulk for weeks – then months – about having to change diapers still.
- Accept the fact that even though you have a very bright and capable 2 and 1/2 year old, you will be changing TWO kids’ diapers soon, because you seriously suck at potty training.
- Thank God for the miracle when, just weeks before her brother is born, Annalise says to you out of the blue, “Mommy, I think I’ll wear big girl panties today.” And she does. And never once has an accident even though you rarely remember to take her. She just asks to go on her own.
- Consider your potty training a success. You have about 3 weeks of no diapers before the little man arrives. Job well done.
So like I said, I’m pretty much a pro at this and am really just holding out for Jacob to show his readiness. Yeah, that’s it.
But just to speed the process along, I decided to take the boy shopping and get him some big boy undies. You know, for motivation. He picked out the Disney Cars undies and was super excited. Right up until I told him what they were for. Because really, he has no intention of going potty in the toilet.
I told him big boys go potty in the toilet… He told me he is not a big boy! I told him that yes, he actually is.
It was at this point during our conversation that he told me why he is not a big boy. “But I not a big boy, Mommy. Because I stiwl sweep in my cwib. And because I way-oh (wear) die-pees (diapers). And because I’m dist a baby stiwl. I your wittle baby, Mommy. So I can’t go potty in da toe-let.”
Funny. “Babies” don’t usually reason like that. Hmmm.
“Jacob, Mommy thinks you’re a big boy. I know you’re a big boy. Will you just wear the big boy undies and see? It will be so fun! You’ll get to wear Lightning McQueen Undies!”
“No. I not wearing dem.”
“Jacob, will you please try…”
“How about you just try them on. Will you put them on for mommy?”
“No. I WILL NOT! I will NOT. PUT. DEM. ON.”
It was at this point I had finished buckling him in his car seat. I opened the package from Target and handed him a pair of Lightning McQueen undies to hold while he thought it over. Because clearly, from that last statement, he indicated he would think about it.
I unloaded the rest of the cart in silence and fumbled through my purse for my phone, paying no attention to the strong-willed “baby” in my back seat.
But then, hope! He showed signs of giving in… “Mommy, I will wear da undies. I will wear dem for you.”
Yes! My plan is working! Proud of myself for my convincing tactics, I move from the back of the van to his open door to look at my son to tell him what a big boy he is. And I see him. Grinning from ear to ear. Clearly proud of his own tactics. “See Mommy. I wear dem for you. Wight away!”
Not exactly what I had in mind.
Just the same, he is cute as can be and rather hilarious. So I set the package of undies on his lap and – phone now found – hold it up to take a pic. “CHEEEEEEEEEEESE!” He shouts.
And I laugh, seriously impressed he was able to pull them over his head. Not an easy task, actually.
Big boy. Big boy indeed.