Few weeks ago I caught Mouse stashing uneaten breakfast blackberries in the potty for later, and I knew then that I was doing it wrong. I read a bunch of articles from well meaning pediatricians and mothers. And then some more articles from more frantic mothers and kinda weird pediatricians, and decided I was a professional. Every night we'd let Mouse loose diaper free (since both of us are home, easier to catch her in mid-pee) and try to read books on the potty. It sort of worked. We read LOTS of books, colored lots of pages, and peed on almost every rug in the house.
Potty is for Playing..
Mouse has a remarkable ability to stop peeing when interrupted, which makes it impossible to carry her to potty mid-act, to catch even a couple drops into the potty. So that a celebration dance could be done, of course. She stops peeing, and then when we've relaxed our watch, finishes up behind a drape somewhere. Or behind the giant Costco teddy bear. Or into her little foam armchair. She's not really picky, except that it can't be in the potty. This one time, couple weeks ago, we caught her mid poo - and caught it into the potty, (I have never seen Mr Snork move so fast, and we've played volleyball together) but she was neither super impressed nor convinced that that's a good use of her potty. Even the Oreo didn't really get her riled up to celebrate.
She can also hold pee for a really long time. Like, super long - because, I mean, she's the size of a watermelon herself - so when I feed her half of one, I expect pee galore in minutes. Especially when I follow it up with water, juice, and grapes. Not 3 hours later. That's crazy bladder muscles, and I'm not even sure that it's good for her. On the upside, when she REALLY has to go - it's REALLY obvious. So I guess, there was that.
Yesterday, she peed on my leg. I mean, it was REALLY obvious that she had to pee, to anyone who knows these things, but I thought she was rubbing her butt on me because it was itchy. I tried to lift her to potty mid pee, but she screamed and looked like was done anyway. After that, and (like the articles instruct) some mildly expressed mild disappointment from me and new pajama pants, we snuggled up on the couch, and she peed ALL OVER me. Within minutes of the leg pee. That's when I really knew I was doing it wrong.
I checked with a Russian forum - they don't say how, and they don't even have a term for "potty training", but all these Russian kids are running around using toilets as soon as they can walk. (So, my mother isn't lying). Yesterday night, we did the the usual potty dance. Read the books, drank some water, pranced around. Then, when I thought it was pretty close to rug scrubbing time, I took our potty and books, and went to the master bathroom. It felt like hours, and a little bit like prison, but the beauty of the bathroom is that there are no drapes, no teddy bears, very few toys (she found some behind the hamper), and really, the potty is the only place to sit. I read the animals alphabet book 6 times, from cover to cover. The Russian alphabet has 32 letters, so that's 32 poems, plus pointing out all the pictures, and making animal sounds when appropriate. Periodically, we checked for pee. And then, just when I was resigning, she got off the potty, and waved at it, nonchalantly. And there, was PEE!!!!!!!!
I have a picture of that, too, but I have since realized that it's probably not the case where a picture is worth a 1000 words..
Not an entire glass of juice and 3 slices of watermelon worth of pee, or anything. That she was saving for the night time Pampers. No matter. I did a dance. Mr Snork arrived home just in time to join in the dance. I gave her a magical cookie. (Seriously, it's these Polish soft wafer things, covered in chocolate, with fruit jelly inside. I don't really share them with anyone). After she went to bed, I had a Starbucks to celebrate.
This morning felt like starting over, and just when I was thinking about (and dreading) another hour closed up in the bathroom, I checked for pee, and mentioned that cookie. And turned on Wall-E, alternating it with the Animal Jail show, where some dumb chick locked her dogs in a 103'F vehicle. But plot isn't important, Mouse LOVES dogs, and there was plenty of dog action, and between that, Wall-E, and the mention of the cookie, she peed again. Just a little. I mentioned the cookie again, and she peed a lot. The watermelon may have finally cycled out.
She's just in it for the cookies, but I don't care.
She peed again in the afternoon, when my girlfriend showed up to visit. In between she peed on herself when we went outside, but I think that's a form of protest against the training pants.
They were the smallest (2T) and the prettiest (white) that Babies R Us had.
I would probably pee on them, too. Not to worry though, now that I know that this peeing thing isn't a myth, I've attacked Amazon for some adorable 18 month old pink training pants. Look out, neighborhood. Mr Snork is going to be appalled when the charges come through, but pre-pee yesterday, I was wondering if we had the most defective, ineffective, and repulsive potty out there (why else would you consistently pee on my doormat instead?) and was pretty sure I needed to start trying every brand out there, until one worked. Training panties might be cheaper.