Adventures in Potty Training

I up and decided mid-May to start potty training Eleanor.  I had been in no rush whatsoever to start on the potty training bandwagon.  In fact, I expected to wait until she was closer to 3 years old.  However, Eleanor was definitely interested in the potty (we had been casually sitting her on one for months) and I was a little worried about missing my window of opportunity.  She also started getting more diaper rashes and subsequently hated having her diaper on.  She'd wake up from her nap yelling, "Change diaper!! Change diaper!!"  We were nearing the end of our box of diapers and I really didn't want to have to buy more.  Without giving it too much thought, I decided on a Monday morning that we would start the very next day.

We headed to Target with a list of potty training essentials (princess panties, step stool, juice boxes, treats for bribes, etc. etc.) and loaded up.  Eleanor picked out Ariel and Frozen panties and was very excited.  We talked all Monday about how tomorrow we were going to say "bye bye diapers" and how she was going to go on the potty like a big girl.  We talked about it so much that even I was getting excited.  

Of course, that Monday night Ford refused to sleep all of a sudden and I woke up that next morning not feeling well and Aaron had a 6 am meeting so he was gone.  It seemed like the perfect storm and I contemplated not following through but in the end felt like I couldn't turn back.  We were too committed at this point.  Eleanor and I did our normal morning routine and I let her stay in her diaper through breakfast (if I were to do it all over again, I would have taken her diaper off right when she woke up) and then we got dressed for the day.  I had her throw the last unused diaper in the garbage can and she said "Bye bye diapers!"  We put on her big girl panties and took pictures to get her excited.  

Those first two days were ROUGH.  Turns out Eleanor has an amazing ability to "hold it" so she would just hold it for forever and then have an accident.  I was totally discouraged and thought we'd surely be at this business for a month.  It's amazing to me how mentally and emotionally exhausting it is to watch your child constantly and be ready to drop everything at a moments notice to rush to the bathroom.  And of course this is all the more exhausting when you are in the middle of nursing your 3 month old.  However, by the third day Eleanor had zero accidents and seemed to be getting it.  And now a month later, potty training seems to be a breeze.  M&M's and fruit snacks were the golden ticket for Eleanor in the end and even though we've long since run out, she still reminds me that we need to go to the store to re-stock. 

And the happiest development as of late is that she can now go entirely on her own using her step stool.  I'll often be in another room and she'll run in to let me know that she just went all on her own and wiped and flushed too.  When I told my mom this the other day she said, "I hope you know how incredibly lucky you are!"  And I don't take it for granted at all.  I'm counting my lucky stars that she caught on so quickly and that we are now down to just one child in diapers.  

Aaron and I have some incredibly awesome potty training stories now and find them hilarious to share.  We are realizing that people have their limits though on how much they are willing to hear about Eleanor's potty adventures (and I can't really blame them ;)).  We find it incredibly funny though that she has a potty song (she sings "sittin' on the poooottttyyyyy" everytime) and that she managed to hold it for the 5.5 hour drive to Southern California because she was scared of the gas station potty. 

So yayyy for potty training!  So glad those first few days are over!

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