Freestyle Fridays are for guest posters or for me to veer off my normal course whether with old posts or different than usual ones. So, here ya go, a mommy blog post about potty training. It consumed my life for two weeks so it deserved some words. 🙂 Happy Friday!
Life is never as hard as it seems. Our expectations distort reality and make things harder on ourselves. Whether our expectations are too high and the result is not as good or our fears paralyze us from action. I have learned that plowing through what we expect to be difficult leads to a happy surprise that it wasn’t so bad. This realization helps me to put my expectations aside, silently witnessing their presence but not letting them get the best of me.
So, on a completely different note than usual, let’s talk about potty training. I fully expected potty training to be a nightmare. I was putting it off until we got settled in a new home because I had always heard that boys are difficult to train and I didn’t want to have too many transitions and adjustments at once. Maybe the universe was just being kind and gave me a small gift of ease because he was not difficult at all. My little guy, just shy of three, is fully potty trained and it took just a day less than 2 weeks. I am beaming with pride for him and admittedly myself too.
So, here is my “How to Potty Train a Boy in 2 Weeks” guide, as if I really know anything except that someone might Google “How to Potty Train a Boy” and find this helpful.
1. Let them let you know when they are ready.
My son was in the bath and stood up saying he had to pee so I pulled up his stool in front of the potty, pulled him out of the bath putting him on the stool facing the toilet and he peed. And his love for peeing standing up blossomed there. I’m convinced boys have fun peeing.
2. Teach them to pee standing up. It is WAY easier than sitting down and much less messy.
3. Use a Potty Training App to help you remember when they will need to go.
I used Potty Baby and it was good because I could track when he went to the bathroom, it gave him stars and sent me notifications when he should go again. I could manually set the notifications to a time that matched his schedule. This worked out great having two kids and being busy and on the go.
4. Check out children’s books from the library about boys going to the potty.
This was a very helpful tool. But my kids tend to process new ideas best when I support the idea with a story. This held true with my daughter and moving to a new house too. The library is such an invaluable resource!
5. Go straight to underwear rather than use pull-ups or diapers intermittently.
I almost did training pants at certain times of the day but decided early on to dive in and commit to this training 100% and I think that paid off.
6. Use tons of praise unless they get embarrassed then instead be nonchalant and cool even though you want to jump up and down singing your son’s praise when he poops.
The sticker system worked great for my son. I wish I had used sticker charts with my daughter but she was my first and I had no idea what I was doing. I think I gave her Dibs each time she went. Oh well. The sticker chart is great because it gives them a visual of how well they are doing plus he enjoyed picking out a sticker each time.
7. Cut up a Goodnights bed mat into squares to place in car seat for travels
We used this on a road trip and it gave me peace of mind though he never had an accident.
8. Stalk them for “the poop face”
This may be the hardest part of potty training.
9. Be patient and consistent.
Stay the course! Don’t give up!
10. Rub it in your husband’s face that your constantly asking about poop and pee is because you are wise, persistent and determined and it pays off even if it is a bit annoying.
Our experience was pretty easy and my son potty trained quickly and seamlessly. He is so very proud of himself. He feels like a big boy and while I want him to stay my little baby forever, he is growing up and I couldn’t be prouder. But I am also proud of myself for accomplishing something I had been putting off because I dreaded it being difficult. It was not at all what it seemed and that is a good life reminder.