Saturday, September 22, 2012

How to Train Your Toddler

Correction: How to Potty Train Your Toddler

Step 1: Wait until she's ready.

The end.

I started to try to potty train Noelle at the beginning of the summer. I was determined to proudly walk my potty trained two year old into her daycare at the beginning of this school year and proclaim to all that I had successfully coached her out of diapers and WOW aren't I the best at being a mom??

Well, after one day of potty training in May, I quit. I cried and then I quit. Noelle wasn't getting it. I wasn't sticking with it. End of story. Looking back now, I laugh because Noelle was still sleeping in a crib. How on Earth was I going to teach a child to get up out of bed in the middle of the night to go potty when she wasn't even physically able to get out of bed in the first place?

So, we abandoned the potty training idea for a couple of months. We bought her a twin bed and started pumping her full of "I'm a big girl!" confidence. Once she started school, the people at the daycare began to plant the seed of sitting on the potty. I had mixed feelings about this-- mainly because I wasn't really asked if this was OK, and I wasn't sure if I was ready for them to do it...but Noelle insisted on trying like the big girls, and I guess it ended up being a good thing.

As of last Friday, I added several pair of Hello Kitty underwear to the Dora & Yo Gabba Gabba ones we already owned from the first failed attempt and told Noelle we were done with diapers.

Now, I'm not saying I haven't had to clean up my fair share of pee on the floor, on the toilet set, in the undies, on the socks, etc, etc, etc...but I will say that in one week, she had only ONE accident while at school, and she has used the potty numerous times out in public, too. I'd say her success rate is about 75-80% at home, and I think that's pretty good. She wants to be a big girl and she likes feeling successful.

We are trying to reward her with stickers instead of food treats, but I'm not gonna lie...I've been so happy she's finally doing it that I have given her suckers, gum, fruit snacks, chocolate, and I bought her a stuffed penguin today because she peed in the potty at Hobby Lobby. I'm that mom...but I don't really care. I can honestly say I haven't changed a diaper in a week, and that hasn't happened since early 2010. All this just in time for me to start changing lots and lots of tiny diapers here in a few weeks.

Potty training is HARD work on the parents, too. Diapers are much easier. I actually was OK with her being in diapers. It's far easier when you're out in public to just let your kid pee in her diaper instead of frantically trying to find a bathroom while your child is yelling to an entire store "I have to go potty!" all the while you're sweating profusely and worried someone is going to buy that shirt that's the last one in your size that you're going to need to stash somewhere while you're in the bathroom. Ugh.

But-- it's a necessary evil, this potty training thing. I'm happy she has decided to take the leap. Just one more notch in her "I'm a big girl" belt.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Playing Catch-Up

I can't believe it has been over a month since I last posted. I used to be so devoted to keeping this blog updated, and I used to really love reading blogs. I still do, but I get so overwhelmed when I start that I usually just go to Facebook. It's a really exciting life I live.

Let's see, what's new with me? I am currently attempting to save the world, one student at a time. I think the school year has started off well, but I am completely distraught over the fact that I don't have a maternity leave substitute yet, and I don't have all of the information ready to give to my "maternity leave sub." I want to put together a binder of all the important things he/she needs to know while I am gone for 12 weeks, but I haven't had time to do that yet.

I suppose I feel a sense of urgency because at my 32 week appointment last week, I basically had to convince the nurse practitioner (I didn't get to see my doc because she was already scheduled full) to check me to see if I was dilating (which is a really gruesome word and I hate using it) yet. I have been feeling nonstop pressure down low and a lot of contractions, so I was just curious. I was having flashbacks of my pregnancy with Noelle when I was 7 cm dilated at 38 weeks and 2 days later they induced me. So, she checked me, only to find that I was already 3 cm....yes, at 32 weeks. Of course it is too early, and it's not even anything to get excited about because if the baby is trying to come early, she is WAYYYY too early.

I go back to the doctor on Tuesday of next week, and I'm wondering if she will check me again. I am also wondering if I will have progressed further. My biggest "wonder" is what she will tell me if I am progressing. Will she tell me I need to go on bed rest? Will she give me some sort of medicine to helps stop contractions? Will she let me be and just tell me to wait it out? I don't know...but I am nervous and oh-so-thankful that Luke can come with me this time. The last time, after the 3 cm scare, I was put on the fetal monitor for about 20 minutes. I was all alone and scared and nervous and going through all of the "what ifs" in my head.

So, all of those things aside, I am really, really excited for this weekend. Saturday is going to be "Baby Preparedness Day." Luke is finally off on a Saturday and we have planned for this day to be the one when we pack hospital bags, bring down baby gear from the attic, get the nursery all ready to go, wash bedding and blankets, and do all of the things we have neglected to do for the past 8 months.

Then...Sunday marks my final (LAST ONE!!!!!!!) photo session before my leave begins. I never thought this day would come. Honestly, I love my photography business and am SOOOOOO thankful for all my clients, but I am so ready for a big ol' break. I haven't set a return date yet, but it will probably be Feb/March of 2013, provided we survive the apocalypse. I am so excited for all the free weekends I will have. It's going to be amazing!!!!

It's now 8:30 and I am ready for bed! Tired doesn't begin to describe how I feel right now. Even Noelle passed out an hour earlier than normal. I think that's a sign that I should, too.