We’re on about week seventeen of potty training at our house. Maggie is much closer to three than she is to two, perfectly capable of big girl underwear, and we really should be done already. But to paraphrase and slightly blaspheme the words of Jesus Christ: her flesh is perfectly willing, but her spirit says, No freaking way.
I’ve been trying everything, sometimes all at once, which is probably part of the problem. I’ve proffered M&M’s just for sitting on the potty (with diaper on), read books and screened videos on the topic (the “Bear in the Big Blue House” potty episode is a favorite), promised a “swimming Barbie” (her request), had her brothers sing her a song of celebration improvised just for the occasion- all to no avail.
Maggie is my third child, and most third-time parents know well enough to wait until their kids are good and ready. But Nursery School is less than eight weeks away, and patience is not my strong suit, so this week I forced the issue a bit. It was time for the big guns: stickers.
MOMMY: Look, Maggie! This is your new potty chart!
MAGGIE: Why you call dem “chart”? Dem just paper.
As you can see, she is a tough sell. But once the chart was taped to Maggie’s wall, proved irresistible enough that she sat on the potty and WENT, once on Saturday, once on Sunday. Behold!
The “poop” on there is from back in April, when Maggie announced she would sit on the potty one day, did her business, and then completely stonewalled on the entire notion for the next three months.
But now, we were ready. “It just goes to show you,” I told my husband. “When they’re ready, it’s a total breeze.”
48 hours have passed. The chart has lost all power of persuasion. Maggie is back to refusing any potty conversation whatsoever.
But the chart idea has caught on with another member of our family.
As you can see by his “Spotty Chart,” Seamus has given himself stickers for eight peeps and one poop since Sunday. He will be six tomorrow. He hasn’t worn a Pull-Up since mid-2007. My God, I’m so proud.