Sunday, January 22, 2012

Potty Training H-E-Double Hockey Sticks!

(The following post is ALL ABOUT poop... this is completely for my own records and reflections and not intended for the masses unless you are so inclined... you were warned... Thank you!)

Pardon the title but... really... it's been hard! But wait, I thought he filled his potty jar and got to go to the hockey game? Right... he did, BUT he did that by adding one potty penny at a time... for the pee pee, not the poo poo! Oh the poo poo, the poop, the big #2... why, oh why is it so hard?!

Well, I guess we should go way back... about 27ish years ago when a sweet little girl named Katie was learning to go #2 on the potty... her parents had tried everything... but alas, they had no luck. So they did what any good parent would do... they doped her up with miralax and forced her to sit on the potty for 30 minutes at a time... screaming, crying, begging to get off and poop in a diaper... oh please! For the love! Can she just poop in a diaper?!!

Seems cruel, doesn't it?

Well, when we first started potty training Caden it became clear very early on, like day one, that he wasn't going to be easy when it came to pooping on the potty. My every day pooper and sometimes twice a day pooper was becoming an every FOUR day pooper. I know that sounds terrible, but I was operating under the assumption that what goes in WILL eventually HAVE to come out... and so I waited, and waited and waited... and then when I knew there is NO way it wasn't coming out we sat, and sat, and sat on the potty... screaming, crying, begging, to poop in a diaper. No go... tried a suppository or two... BUT I couldn't hold him down in order to get it in well... flailing, kicking, screaming... the kid is STRONG! Even KK was visiting during one of these times and the two of us together couldn't do it... and during that particular struggle I decided that was IT... I couldn't do it any longer. I could NOT listen to my sweet baby boy scream ANY longer. It was torture... for him and for me and I was over it. So I gave him a diaper... and made a habit of giving him a diaper every 3 days if he hadn't pooped... which of course he never did.

Well, then came the potty incident of 2012, when we exploded all over my brother's nice new rug... nice one! Clearly, our plan was getting us no where and I knew that. So I talked to his doctor about it one day when we were there for Kaki's well-check and she suggested I do Miralax and not fight the issue... she told me and I quote, "If you try to fight him on this one, you will lose!!" FINALLY, someone who was understanding what I had been saying... we are LOSING this battle. She had given me the out I so desperately wanted... I didn't want to have to be tough on him!

So I went home, got some miralax and we started. Well, miralax makes your kids a smelly, tooty mess. Or at least it does for Caden, so I decided that I didn't really like that, plus I felt like it was making him not feel well...but basically it was me just making an excuse not to use it and thus not having to worry about Caden pooping on the potty at all... at least not by torturing him to do it... or forcing him... or whatever you want to call it.

Diapers, diapers, diapers... that gets old too. I mean a three year old who is eating the same food I eat really shouldn't be pooping in a diaper anymore, you know?! Or even worse... a kid who says, "Mommy, I need a diaper so I can poop!" REALLY doesn't need a diaper to poop. I mean he obviously knows it's coming... I mean, hello!

I was feeling pretty good about our diaper deal and I had learned my lesson in Nac and was letting him have a diaper every other day and wasn't forcing the potty issue at all. Well, he QUICKLY (like overnight) got used to the fact that he was going to get to poop in the diaper without a fight on the potty at all. And then he got even smarter and realized that he could ask for a diaper ANYTIME he needed to go to the potty... like he could ask for one two, three times a day... even when he didn't REALLY need to poop so he could pee pee in there too... that way he wouldn't have to interrupt his playtime and could just go... I mean, duh!

Well, I guess I look dumber than I actually am because I caught on to this pretty quick... it was earlier this week, while KK was visiting us that I was discovering that Caden was outsmarting me... BIG time. So I had a little pep talk/pow wow with KK and I decided that enough was enough... I had tried it all... NOTHING was working!

Aside from buying him his own COUNTRY, I had offered to buy him everything... take him anywhere... let him play with ANYTHING and NOTHING was a big enough motivator. I even started taking away his favorite toys every time he used a diaper to poop... BUT nothing! I mean his favorites... the trumpet, the Baylor flag, the drum... and while my life was much quieter for those few days... I was getting NO WHERE! Pretty soon his ENTIRE playroom would be up on a shelf and he would still be pooping in the diaper... NOT ok!

So... I decided it was time... I was going to INSIST that he do it on the potty... no more diapers NO MATTER WHAT! So, all day Friday I pumped that kid full of juice... and not juice mixed with water... straight juice... he was eating lots of fruit... it was just a matter of time. So Saturday comes along and he is obviously VERY gassy... which means that he is trying with ALL HIS MIGHT to fight the urge to poop. Not to mention he has had a double ear infection this week, so with all of the YUCK coming out of his nose and down his throat plus all of the meds he is on, we knew he was REALLY needing to go. Justin and I took a deep breath and said ... "Here we go... we are about to enter potty training h-e-double hockey sticks... we can do this! We are going to win!"

5:30 pm, Saturday evening... started on the mini potty in front of the TV. A new tactic after Caden seeing it in the garage and asking to use it to poop. So we tried it...

30 minutes later we are still sitting on the little potty... and nothing. He asks if he can move to the big potty... SURE, we say! And so he does...

6:00pm It's dinner time at the Cox house and so we all sit down for dinner... EXCEPT for Caden who we make continue to sit on the potty. We thought this isolation tactic might work to our advantage. So Justin, Kaki and I all sat at the table with Caden in the bathroom... crying, yelling at times, asking over and over again to be done. Spankings were his alternative... seems harsh I know, but we had to do it...

6:45pm Caden is STILL sitting on the potty. By this point I have spent over 30 minutes singing, praying, rubbing his back, trying to calm him down and make him relax while on the potty. Justin took a turn once, but it was Mommy who he wanted to "come see me." And so I did. After sitting there with him for over 30 more minutes Justin felt like we needed to take action... so we put in a suppository!

We have had to use suppositories on Kaki a few times lately and it never has taken longer than 15 minutes to work although the bottle says it can take up to an hour... so we were hopeful that by 7:45 or so, we'd have a happy kid who had just pooped on the potty and we could feed him some dinner and get him to bed. Oh please say that it will only be another hour at the MOST! And by the way... Daddies are REALLY strong and a HUGE help when trying to put a suppository in! Praise God for Justin!

7:45 rolls around and still NOTHING! NOTHING! He has managed to still hold it in and refuse to let it out. Again, we spent the hour going in between singing, praying, talking, being firm, saying "PUSH, PUSH..." I felt like a labor and delivery nurse... We were counting and pushing, and counting... I could tell when he'd try to push and when he wouldn't... a few times we got a little something during a good push, but still no actual poop!

8:00 it's been over an hour, the kid is tired, his hands are red and hurting from holding himself up on the potty for so long so we decided to let him get off and eat dinner. Keep in mind that we have let him get up to take a "break" a few times, but each time he runs right back to the potty because he can tell it's coming... it really was the most frustrating thing to watch him RUN back to the potty knowing that it was coming out and then get there and not actually do anything to go!


Caden is eating dinner at the table by himself. Tough love people... we were trying to keep it up although it was killing us. So sweet thang sat there and chowed down on his pizza all by his lonesome. If he turned around we'd tell him to watch the microwave... isn't that sad?!

8:30pm back on the toilet. Justin took a shift. As I was pouring myself a glass of water (don't worry I had already had a glass of wine with dinner) I heard Justin say, "Caden, if I put a diaper underneath you while you try to poop will that help?"

From the kitchen I scream, "NOOOOOOO! No diapers!!! We are NOT going back there! Absolutely not!!"

I was thinking that Justin had surely lost his mind. It had been THREE long, painful hours at this point... NO WAY were we going to give up now... NO SIR! You are going to do it!!

9:00pm VICTORY... but not in the way we KNEW it needed to be. It was actually kind of a pathetic excuse for poop... BUT we didn't think we could change the rules and now say that while he DID poop it wasn't enough. So we said YAY CADEN! Celebrated for a few minutes and then sent the kid to bed, without a bath...

9:15pm Caden is asleep... SO TIRED!

9:45pm Justin and I are asleep... BEYOND TIRED! I think it may have been the most mentally exhausted I have ever been. Truly!

Which brings us to today...

Juice... mexican food for lunch... Sprite... chocolate milk... miralax... oh yes I did!

1:30pm Caden starts crying and screaming, "I am pooping... I am pooping!!" But he's in his playroom and not on the potty. So running... he climbs on the potty with just a little bit of a mess in his undies and sits...

Justin is coaching him through it... you can do it Caden, you need to... it's coming!!

It's COMING!!!

And boy... did it EVER come... not sure where it all came from, but he did it!! And it was glorious!

And we clapped and cheered and Justin drove him straight to Sonic for an ice cream treat! He didn't have to take a nap because he had pooped in the potty! It was SO exciting! And it made the night before not seem so bad... because it had worked... we had won! He pooped... no diaper!!

Now... I don't consider us cured... and I know that we still have more long, painful, stand-offs on the potty in our future... BUT we're moving in the right direction and I don't think there is ANY way that he can outsmart us on this one!

All of this to say... that being a parent IS tough and sometimes we have to do things we HATE doing and those things may even make our kids sad, cry and scream BUT at the end of the day we all cheer, hug and eat ice cream together and that's what really matters!! So I guess that means that even potty training H-E-double hockey sticks has its rewards... Way to go Cox Fam!!

1 comment:

KK said...

I am so proud of you guys! Being the parent is way tougher than being the kid!!