For some insane reason, I really wanted to have a horrific potty training story. I wanted to tell you that we had poop everywhere. That everything from the dogs to the newel post had been pissed on. That I went in as a naive stay at home dad, but came out an R. Kelly supporter. I wanted to have some real useful information for you parents or soon-to-be parents out there who were looking for comfort or direction. Alas, there is no goopy, smeared up, or inadvertent golden shower end to this story nor is there any real direction (well...maybe a little, but you're really going to have to look hard).
We started potty training the Big Guy in April. I had this not so glamorous idea of hammering it out through what is called the 'commando plan'. You let your kid run around buck naked for the weekend, don't leave the house and keep placing them on the toilet until they start to get the sensation of needing to go to the bathroom. The point to keeping them undressed is so that they can see the action instead of it be even remotely held back by pull-ups or even underwear.
All of the write ups on this method certainly gave warning to the possibility of mass accidents, that it would be a miserable weekend for all involved, but that in the end, we would have conquered the almighty porcelain god...or in our case, the duck potty.
This never happened.
So we went with the easier approach. The ol'just-pop'im-on-the-potty-every-fifteen-to-twenty-minutes-until-something-happens-and-go-from-there method. I don't really think that is a per se method, but you get my drift.
The main reason for going about it this way was I was simply too much of a pansy to make a go of the 'commando plan'. Call me crazy, but I didn't want full fledged piss streams with mini logs running through my house. I hate getting even remotely close to poop. After wiping one of the boys, if it happens to touch my skin somehow, I nearly lose it. You'd think that after two kids that I would have more than gotten over this. But I haven't.
Just yesterday, the Big Guy said he need to take a dump, then once he was on the toilet he said "my poop won't come out, Dadda". But apparently he had a turltler (for you uninitiated, that's a poop that just breaks the barrier and is just itching for a reason to drop or smear somewhere). Because when I came back to the bathroom I saw a small ball of something outside the door, thinking it was dirt I went to pick it up...it was shit. Now while I really do try to curb my foul language around the boys, when fecal matter is involved, I invariably drop a few bombs. Nothing too imaginative, just your usual 'son of bitch', 'fuck my life' and 'are you fucking kidding me' variety. Then to compound the problem, the Big Guy then changed his mind and said he really did have to take a poop. After wiping him, we needed to get his underwear back on (which he had happily shed upon his false alarm), so as I held his Toy Story 3 underwear for him to step into, I noticed a grape sized smear of crap on his ankle. As my stomach began to sink, while I realized that there must be the rest of that smear near by, I noticed that the other half was closer than somewhere, it was running down the knuckle of my finger. And the cussing re-commenced. But I digress.
Truth be told, the first day of potty training went better than expected. We had two accidents and one success. Since we diaper the Big Guy at nap time and bed time, we missed out on a few. But overall I was happy. From then on, it wasn't too bad. The only real trouble is that while he was a wiz (no pun intended) with peeing in the toilet, he had yet to take a poop in it.
That would take a few more months. Like I said, we took the scenic route.
Now that he is pretty well trained (though we still do nap time and bed time diapers for him), we run into other somewhat awkward issues. Just things I never expected. Such as teaching him to wipe. As natural as it is, just try to (assuming you haven't had to yet) explain the concept and motion to a three year old. It's hard enough to explain the sun rising or why Momma works, let alone a backwards crank of the shoulder, mixed with a twist of the wrist, very specific targeting and the inward/upward motion that is ass wiping. With my aversion to getting excrement on me (or as would be in this case, being around other people with crap on them), it makes it difficult to want to explain to him how to wipe himself. I know I will have to, but I can just imagine all the crappy hands I will be cleaning and just the thought alone of that makes me ill.
Right now we are dealing with 'itchy butt' and 'Dadda, come wipe me'. Just today as we were having the house sprayed for insects (I now have the advantage of knowing the difference between a smoky brown cockroach, the standard wood roach - also known as the American cockroach and the apparently very fertile German cockroach...and knowledge is power), Benj yelled from the top of the basement stairs "Dadda, I have itchy butt". To which I told him to go ahead and scratch it, otherwise I would check him out after I was done speaking with the exterminator. He yelled back "but I have itchy butt now, Dadda". What's a guy to do?
A few weeks ago, as I was canceling my Direct TV service (since our new house would unfortunately have no line of sight of the southern sky), Benj declared that he had to poop. He likes to tell me that he has to go to the bathroom. I am not sure why. Probably because it is still pretty new to him that he is doing it mostly on his own. Or perhaps, maybe he is some sort of excrement exhibitionist. I don't know. Either way, when he finished, he loudly demanded (of course during a moment that the Direct TV rep was quietly researching something): "Dadda, I went poop. Now you wipe my butt". The Direct TV rep enjoyed this to no end.
All in all, I guess I am happy that my stories aren't more gruesome or that I don't have to wonder where the smell is coming from or why the carpet is wet. It was a surprising turn of events for me, but like most other things with the Big Guy, I suspect he has something in store for me in some other regard. Something that will make me want to crawl out of my skin. Something that will drive me nuts. Almost certainly something I haven't even thought of yet. And then there is the Taz. They remind me a bit of myself. Crafty, conniving, mischievous prone and ill timed bladder having little shits.