FYI: If you don’t want to read about pee and poop, skip this one. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
Ever since we had to scramble to potty train Riley before he started PK3 at SCR, I was determined not to wait until the last minute with Rory. I had grand plans for him to be all trained at two and a half. But of course that didn’t happen.
And when he started showing some interest in using the potty in early January, I totally dropped the ball. Then he wanted nothing to do with it, and I feared we would have to go through the same thing we did with Riley.
So when Rory expressed slight interest on the morning of Tuesday, April 12, I jumped on it. We stayed home all day long and trained. Kenny was at work; Riley was at school. It was just Rory and me. And a lot of apple juice, juice pouches, and movies. And patience. LOTS of patience.
I used the same method we did with Riley: gave Rory anything he wanted to drink, encouraged him to drink lots, and set a timer to try every 20 minutes. He had three accidents in the first hour and a half, but he went every time I sat him on the potty. However, he started to cry after the third accident, possibly from getting the cars on his underwear wet, which I encouraged him not to do. That was the point when we ditched the underwear and just went naked from the waist down for the rest of the day.
Even without the underwear, he cried hard the next time I sat him on the potty, which was when I started to doubt myself. I really questioned whether I was doing the right thing; after all, I didn’t want to traumatize him! But we pushed forward and I just hoped for the best.
It was around 11:30am that he finally didn’t cry. I pulled a stack of books into the bathroom and read a construction book to him while he went, which seemed to help. Shortly after that, he had two successive yet small accidents on the comforters I had spread out in the living room, but not much at all. And he went on the potty right after I caught him both times.
It was just after noon that we had a breakthrough: I noticed he looked like he could go, so I asked and he said that he wanted to try. He ran to the bathroom on his own and went. Fantastic! This earned him half of a York as a reward, which I continued every other time he went.
Much of the rest of the afternoon was nothing but success. Sometimes before the timer went off, sometimes after. I extended the time to every 30 minutes at one point because he wasn’t drinking as much.
Then he fell asleep on me around 3pm. We were both exhausted from the long, trying day. Nola and Nopsi went to pick up Riley from school and dropped him off at home so I didn’t have to leave the house. Rory slept for about an hour, and I rushed him to the potty right when he woke up. Naturally, he started to cry and refused to go. We came back out to get some juice and calm down and of course he peed all over me.
However, the rest of the afternoon and evening were accident-free. In total, he was successful on the potty 19 times, with 2 major accidents and 4 small ones. Not too bad for his first day. Oh, and did I mention that Kenny had customers in town that week and had to go out to a business dinner on Tuesday night? Yeah…..you can bet I opened a bottle of wine the second both boys were in bed.
We put Rory in a diaper for overnight, and he woke up with it completely full the next morning. Not surprising. He went to his music class with Grandma and had an accident while they were there, even though he had gone right before they left her house. Then he had another accident that afternoon while he was upstairs playing with Riley and Nola. But only those two, and he started asking to go that evening before bed, which we counted as big progress.
The next day he had no accidents whatsoever and even pooped on the potty for the first time (after crying because he had held it in too long) and peed in public in the library bathroom. Hooray!
It’s been more of the same since then, although some days are better than others. He’s a had a handful of accidents (#1 and #2), and a lot of times he says he has to go when he really doesn’t, but he’s getting there. And most times he wakes up from nap and nighttime dry. I decided to put him in underwear twice for his nap earlier this week to see what happened. The first day he did great but the second day he woke up soaking wet. So back we went to diapers during his sleep time for a bit longer.
Potty training. It certainly is a process. A long, exhausting process. But Rory has ultimately done really well. And I’m really glad I took advantage of his willingness when I did.
No more swim diapers this summer!