When my mom was dying I told her the very hardest part about the whole crappy thing was that she wouldn’t know my kids. Ugh – thinking, saying or typing that fact will forever bring tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat. Anyway, her response through tears was, “sweetie, I’ll be there cheering you on through potty training, I’ll be there.” She knew what I had not quite accepted. She really is right here, all the time, a voice in my head, a little bird on my shoulder guiding me along the way.
If my mom was of this earth she would be here potty training Emma, that’s just who she was. We got our dog right before my mom came for a visit knowing she would get her house broken. She accomplished this in less than 10 days. She was the most maternal of mothers and I think she honestly loved these parental tasks that require immense care and attention. I don’t think I can quite say the same for myself. I spent one evening scouring the internets for every possible potty training piece of advice to make sure Emma was really ready. I discovered yes, Emma is ready and I need to stop looking for ways to put it off and buck-up.
I am basically following the Jan Goodner dog house-breaking method. This involves taking Emma to the bathroom constantly and a heck of a lot of cheering. Maya got a treat each time she went “whiz”. Emma doesn’t seem to find the treats to be so important so I’ve bumped up an extra notch of woo hoo’s and you did it’s and I am so proud of you’s with a bunch of clapping and hi-fives. I do love seeing the look on her face when she feels success. I also love the day I put the child adaptor on the toilet. Emma sat on it with an enormous grin across her face and kept reapeating, “happy, happy”!
We’re knee deep into this potty training thing. It’s turning out not to be nearly as daunting as I expected. We spend lots of time in the bathroom and possibly even more time talking about everyone we know who uses a potty. Does grandpa use a potty? Yes. Does grandma use a potty? Yes. Daddy? Yes. Mommy? Yes. Teacher? Yes. Neighbor Bob? You betcha.