Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Like Day and Night- Potty Training Twins

     Potty training the twins has definitely served to underline just how different they are.  I really don't think there could be two more different people.  Samuel is my enigma.  Everything he does is completely his own, and he rarely does what the books say children are suppose to do.  For instance, I got a little potty seat for the twins when they were eighteen months old.  I didn't expect them to use it that early, but it was on sale.  Samuel showed immediate interest in it, so I took off his diaper and sat him down.  To my surprise he actually peed!  I thought, Wow! this guy is going to be a breeze to potty train.  Only eighteen months, and has bladder control!  He continued to show mild interest for about six months; going on the potty before baths and after diaper changes.  He wasn't ready to be completely diaper free, but I felt this was a good start.  Meanwhile, Abriel wouldn't go near the potty.  She thought it was "yuck" and somehow in the domain of Samuel. 
     After he turned two, Samuel started taking off his diaper and leaving "deposits" on the floor, so I figured it was time to really start the potty training.  He did OK, but but didn't seem to be making any real strides.  I was starting to get a little frustrated. 
     Back to Abriel.  She has suddenly decided to give going in the potty a try, and is soon doing great.  Within a month she is completely diaper free, even staying dry at night.  There's just one problem though; she won't use any other potty but her own little one.  She will not even go in to a public restroom.  So how did Samuel take to his sister's potty proficiency?  He stopped wanting to have anything to do with the potty, except at public restrooms.  Then he boldly goes where no baby has gone before, and shows his sister up in the one area she will NOT go.  So now I have Samuel happily taking his time on the nasty public potty, while I am trying to keep a hold on Abriel, who is in full blown screaming panic mode, and is trying to make a dash for the door.  People are looking at me like I'm crazy, and that I must surely be doing something really terrible to the poor screaming child in my arms. 
     This status quo goes on for a while, with the only time that Samuel goes on the potty is if he can find some new and inventive was of doing it.  Such as sitting on the potty backwards.  I decided to back off with him, and wait until he seemed ready and Abriel was more independent.  She still has to have me, and only me, go with her to the potty every time.  This takes up quite a bit of my time.
    Then something unexpected happens.  Samuel is getting over a stomach bug, and is going poop many times a day.  Diaper changes are a major cramp in his style, since he has to be still for seconds! I think being still is physically painful for him.  Well, I guess he gets tired of it, and comes up to my bed one morning with the announcement, "I go pee-pee." He then proceeds to take off all his clothes, walk by himself to the bathroom, climb on to the big potty, do his business, wipe, climb off, and flush all by himself.  He does this all day without one accident!  He also refuses to let me help him with any part of the process, which is kind of gross, but I was so thrilled I didn't care.  The next day was the same thing; total independence.  I thought, This is it!  Not quite.  As soon as he got over his diarrhea and didn't need all those diaper changes, he quit going in the potty. ARRRRRRRRRRRG!!!!  Some times I just don't get him.

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