Whine: Potty training stinks. Literally.
Cheese: Ave the Brave is home from the hospital and doing great!
I’d like to start this post with a disclaimer: I believe in disciplining children. In our house offenses such as hitting, biting, spitting and ripping out sister’s hair do not go uncorrected. I have learned in my very short stint as a parent, however, that there are some things you cannot make a child do. Specifically: eat, sleep or go potty. In these cases, your best bets are trickery, bribery and flat out begging.
Fast forward to this morning. Big Sis knows how to use the potty to, how do I put this delicately, um, go “Number One.” But she has thusfar refused to even consider using the potty to do the other thing. This means that I can either leave her in a pull-up all day and have her regress on the skills she already knows. (Because why would you use the potty to tinkle when you have a convenient system already in place?) Or I can put her in her princess panties with the full knowledge that I will be cleaning out some very un-princess-like substances several times each day. It’s a rock and a hard place, people, let me tell you.
Between the clean up and the astronomical cost of pull-ups, you can see why it behooves me to potty train this kid of mine. So I spend all morning watching and waiting. At the first sign of, well, you know, activity, I leap into action. Faster than Superman on Redbull, I grab Big Sis, run to the bathroom and place her on the potty. She takes umbrage at being interrupted and procedes to wail and howl. After approximately two to four time outs (for the unnecessary screaming, flailing and kicking) we are finally ready to begin negotiations.
I do my best Howie Mandel and start with a low offer, keeping it very casual. ”You know, Big Sis, if you go Number Two on the potty, Mommy will give you some candy.” Unimpressed, she yawns. No deal.
So I sweeten the deal a little bit and offer a cookie, or two, or three. The offer registers without even a twitch. No deal.
I’m getting desperate now, it’s time to pull out the big guns. I try to put on my best “breezy” voice and mention that if she were, in fact, to happen to maybe go on the potty, just this once, we could go get that new Veggie Tales movie she’s been wanting. To which she replies, “I don’t want that movie; it’s too scary.” No deal. Well played, Big Sis, well played.
The game ends with an empty potty and a full pull-up. I’ve lost and she’s won. Although I’m not sure exactly what she’s won, except the ability to work Mommy like a marionette. By the time this is over I’ll be offering a pony and a trip to Disneyworld. But at what I save on pull-ups, I might just come out even.