Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Potty Mouth

A few weeks ago, Emerson started doing some Hammer-esque crotch grabbing to indicate that his diaper was wet, so I taught him the "diaper change" sign. He has been using it pretty regularly since then, which meant it was time to introduce him to his own potty.

I have been dreading potty training since before Emerson was even conceived. And considering how slowly and painfully he has achieved other milestones, I have no illusions that this will go any better. But to my surprise, at least the initial introduction went better than expected.

We spent the majority of that first day playing with it - all three of us crammed into our tiny bathroom we dubbed "the head" since it gives one the distinct impression of being in a submarine. Without any prompting, he immediately sat down on his throne and let out a satisfied sigh. I cringed at how realistic this reenaction was and thought about offering him a magazine to read. But it did not stop there....

Emerson had to sit on the little potty....I had to sit on the big potty...Emerson had to sit on the big potty...we both had to sit on our respective potties and look at each other...the baby had to sit on the little potty....Emerson had to sit on the little potty while holding the baby....etc., etc.

I made an effort to let him watch me anytime I actually had to use the bathroom that day - emphasizing each part of the routine and letting him flush it down. This ended up being a mistake because over and over again he would drag me to the toilet, jab his finger at me like a little dictator and demand, "Go, go, GO!!!" Maybe in my pregnancy days I could've followed his command on the spot, but now not so much.

Since that day, the potty's magic has faded and now he only occassionally sits on it. I'm not entirely sure he understands the point of it considering 1) he insists on being fully clothed while sitting on it and 2) yesterday he pulled it up to the big toilet like he was pulling a chair up to a table. Then he began to scoop imaginary food off the toilet lid and pop it into his mouth, savoring each bite with smacking lips. I'm pretty sure OSHA would not approve of that.

I'm not going to push this experiment further for now, but I know that day of following him around like he's an untrained puppy, anxiously asking "Do you have to go potty?" is coming eventually. In the meantime, at least our bathroom fun has motivated me to keep the toilet so clean you could eat off it.

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