Monday, September 23, 2013

Potty Training x2

Over the last month or so my children have given me some subtle and not so subtle queues that they might be ready for potty-training. They are fascinated with the potty and love to flush it...and they have also been reaching into their diapers and pull out some poop to show me that they did indeed poop. Nice. So any who, I decided it was time to give it a go, but knew I wanted to make a serious attempt. So I loaded up on following items:
  • training underpants (1.99 clearance sale at JC Penny's :), 
  • two green froggy potty chairs - and yes before you ask, of course we had to get two potty chairs, they will definitely want to go potty at the same time, and I don't have time or the energy to try to do it separately
  • a stool 
  • potty seat for the regular toilet
  • flushable wipes
  • lots of **treats** (aka M&M's and fruit snacks)
  • as much patience and understanding as I could muster
  • Several bottles of wine, or booze of choice

So, with all of that now in stock I was reach. Kind of. I was actually really not looking forward to it, but had blocked my schedule for at least a week in order to really give it a good effort. I figured if they were going to understand what we were doing I would be the one getting remind them to go to the potty, sit on the potty, etc etc, a million times a day. So we went cold turkey on a Wednesday morning, and took the diapers off when they got up in the morning and only wore underwear the rest of the day. Diapers were only allowed during nap time and bedtime/overnight. The first few days went about as I thought they would, lots and lots of accidents, running around naked, missing the potty my a few seconds (and peeing on the floor), etc, etc, BUT I was pleasantly surprised that we did have several successes the first few days where both boys peed and pooped in the potty a few times. I considered this a huge victory. I also journaled the first few days so I could hopefully see patterns and progress. By the end of Day 3 I do think I was doing less laundry, but overall they still weren't 100% getting it. I was so tired of asking them if they needed to go potty, giving them an M&M and then trying to grab them as they run away naked  and laughing, but this momma was determined to keep at it. All the hard work was not going to be in vain. Then Saturday night happened and I snapped and gave in....temporarily (not at the boys....just went back to diapers for a bit go regain sanity). We took a quick trip to my mom and dad's because I needed a break, after 4 full days of being trapped with mostly naked children and lots of clean-up I needed a little break. While there, we were eating some dinner and watching a Buckeyes pre-game while the boys played on the floor slightly out of sight on the other side of the kitchen island. After a while we hear the dreaded "Uh-oh". So, Tim walked over to see what this was about, and he roared, very loudly "WHAT?!?!?!" I believe both children jumped about 4 inches off the floor. Apparently one of them had pooped and they thought they should try to clean it up themselves with the doggy treat containers, plastic hammers and the play dustbuster. Good try...not. It was so so so so gross. We had to to do massive clean-up, baths, throw away a plastic container that had poop in all the hinges, etc and disinfect. After that, we quickly left to go back to our home. So, apparently the boys were not quite ready to leave the nest yet in undies. 

Sunday was a break day, and they had diapers on the entire 2nd half of the day and this momma took a break! But, alas, Monday came all too soon and it was back to the training. I had the rest of the week to see what could happen and that's all I was really giving it. Mercy was granted to me on Wednesday when Luke went 24 hours without an accident. It was AH-MAY-ZING!! And I finally started seeing the light that at least one of my children may be getting the hang of this thing. Party sounds were going off in my head and I was almost dizzy. My other minion has decided he's not super interested in the potty, and only will use it (and he uses it correctly and will go pee or poo in it) when he wants a treat - primarily chocolate...I think he's his mother's son :) So, Logan is in diapers, but occasionally using the potty and Luke is in underpants all the time and really doing great! He's starting to let us know sometimes when he has to go (we don't ALWAYS have to remind him!) and that is also an awesome step in the right direction. So, here are my lessons learned: 
  • The 3-day potty training method, may be slightly inaccurate on the # of days it actually takes to potty train a 22 month old child
  • I 100% recommend going cold turkey at first and only using training underpants or nothing at all, whatever your preference is. Less confusion and more re-enforcement for the child that this is the new norm
  • Trying to potty train twins is challenging, especially when it's your first time around and they can be little crazy boys that have a mind of their own
  • Due to the lack of clothing and nakedness during potty training, my children now want to play naked all the time....always new problems to deal with! 
  • Perseverance and structure is KEY! Don't give up, never give up! It took us at least a week to get to a place where they started getting the hang of it, but it has been worth it to actually see progress and know there is a light at the end of a very long tunnel
  • When you start potty training you have to train yourself to be a constant reminder for your child, it can get old and annoying to have to constantly ask them and poke/prod them to get on the potty, but completely necessary if you want to drill it into their brains
  • Never take your eyes off of them...this is impossible, but the poop episode has made me wary
  • Celebrating with the happy potty dance after we have a successful potty is A LOT of fun for everyone
and next steps:
  • Keep working on Luke to get him fully potty-trained and telling us each time he has to go potty
  • Work on teaching them how to successfully take their pants and underpants off every time by themselves
  • Start weaning them off the treats (already doing this, if they don't ask for them or seem to miss them, then I don't always give a treat)
  • Work on action plan of how to work on PTing when we leave our house and/or out in public
  • Work with Logan to get him more interested and back in undies rather than diapers
So overall this will be an on-going process but I am very happy with the results so far. I will check back in after a few weeks to let you know how things are going!

Here are a few fun potty pics I have from our time together....warning some are a little graphic ;)


Brittany said...

Ohhhh Luke and Logan, always keeping you on your toes :) Glad that Luke is getting the hang of it more and more, hopefully Logan starts to follow suit soon!

Amanda Clouse said...

Love the PT hats/bowl on their heads!

Steve and Sharon said...

Congratulations on your perseverance. I know I was exhausted after one day of babysitting while they were potty training. Way to go Danielle. Love mom k.

Sonya Kimmet said...

So glad that you are getting there! I'm sure we will be looking for tips in a year or so :)