Wednesday, November 05, 2008
I can lead colorguard units to state championships, teach kids how to do some pretty crazy things with flags, rifles and sabers but do you think I can teach a toddler how to use the potty?
If I had a bathtub that my body could fit in and could afford Calgon, I'd be screaming, "Calgon, take me away!"
One thing about motherhood that I've never come to appreciate or tolerate is poop. The more I have to look at it and smell it, the more I despise it.
Different pull-up diaper brands boast guaranteed success towards potty training if you use them. Cool Alert is supposed to tingle the tinkler so the toddler can trot to the pot. Not my kid. Doesn't seem to feel it or care.
We've watched videos on how "big boy" it is to do you business in the toilet. Videos that hold real underwear in high regard.
When I opened Booger's door this morning, the smell hit me like a tsunami. Gagging, I chased him around his room, over trains, through a tee pee and into a pile of stuffed animals. My fingers latched in his arm pitts and I hoised him on the changing table (which is duct-taped together b/c he's pulled it apart and destroyed it).
"No! No diapers! I don't want diapers!"
"I'm gonna put on your almost-underwear to help you get ready for real underwear."
"Real underwear, I want real underwear." Kyle wiggled and kicked at me as I tried to shove his feet through the leg holes. I'd put him in underpants if he had some. Money is tight and The Budget won't allow for much beyond bills.
Booger vaulted over the edge of the table, I caught him and put him on his back - again. Then I remembered my mom sent a little money in a Halloween card. I knew just the thing to buy.
At Babies-R-Us, Kyle marched proudly down the aisle behind the sales lady toward the rack of big boy underwear. Diego, Cars or Elmo? I was hoping for Thomas, but the Boog lunged for his fave red monster.
"I want Elmo!" The sales lady handed him a 3 pack of 2Ts and he hugged it to his chest twisting from side to side with a huge grin.
After lunch, I dared to ask if he wanted to have an underwear party and put on his new underpants. He chose which pair he wanted to wear.
"Now, if you feel like you need to go poop or pee, tell me and I'll put you on the potty, okay?"
"I play Thomas," Booger said.
Every few minutes I checked for a tell-tale dark spot on his sweat pants. Wanted to catch him before any pee got in my rug.
An hour passed. Bogger bounced up and down on his bed. "Mommy! I jumping!"
And I smelled it.
Let me ask you parents; have any of you ever tried to check you kid's pants while they were bouncing up and down? If not, it's not easy. Trust me.
Matching his rhythm, I pulled at the waistband. The top of a brown pancake peeked at me. Great. Now what? How do you get a kid out of underwear full of poo? I couldn't peel it off like a diaper. Nor could I lay him down. I didn't want the stuff spread like peanut butter down his legs.
Into the bathroom we went. Booger kicked and screamed, "My butt! My butt! Mine poop!"
"I know it's your poop, but it needs to go bye-bye. Elmo is sad because he's dirty." I flipped up the lid of the toilet with my toe.
Suspending his backside over the edge, I peeled down the pants. Or tried. Booger writhed, sending brown quarter-sized poocakes flying.
"Is that poop, Mommy? Is that poop?" He lifted his arms straight above his head and slid from my grasp, planting a socked foot firm in a pile.
I wish I could tell you I reamined calm and collected and said in my most business-like voice, "Now Kyle, I need you to hold still so I can get your sock off. Then I'd like it if you could move over by the tub."
"Nonono! Ew! Getyourfootoutofthere, yuck, your're stepping- oh gross! No! Don't jump! Stopjumpinginyourpoorightnow! I'm loosing it. How do I do this?"
I tucked my kid football style under my left arm and yanked off a yard or so of toilet paper.
"Mommy? Is that Kyle poop? I want to pick up Kyle's poop. Mommy?"
"Don't talk to me, I'm trying to clean-" I remembered the socked foot rubbing against my arm wasn't clean. "Ahhhhh!" I flipped poor Kyle upside down and peeled the offending sock from his foot, flinging it out of reach. "Oh, crap!" It landed poo-side down on the carpet.
"Mommy, are you okay?"
"I'd be okay if you pooped in the potty instead of your pants."
"Where's Esau? I want to scare him. Like a ghost."
Good thing I can bend my body like a pretzel. With one hand I grabbed the sock along with the nasty pants, tossing them in the sink. Now what? Do I just wipe him off with TP or take him to the changing table.
"Stand still so Mommy can clean you..."
"I scare Esau!" My little bun-rocket shot out the door.
"Get back here! You have a dirty bottom!" I gave chase and caught him under the arm-pitts. "I need to clean you up and put on a diaper so you can take a nap (and I can get some work done)."
"No! Mommy, I want underwear!"
Booger is wearing a diaper right now. He's jumping on his bed, scribbling in Daddy's checkbook, and chasing the cats.
No wonder some kids wear diapers until they're eight!