Don’t you just love it when your child goes ahead and reaffirms the idea that you do indeed know them really well, and in fact are totally tuned into their personalities? Well Sausage has well and truly proved us right this week, and I couldn’t be more proud.
We started to attempt potty training probably over a year ago now, right before her second birthday, as she’d been bought a potty and some knickers by a well-meaning relative who thought they’d give us a hand in kick starting the process. We just knew it wasn’t the right time for Sausage, and she remained very resistant to even sitting on the potty. I read a guide a while ago that said children who are still in their ‘negative’ phase, i.e. still saying no to everything, should wait until they start to appear more positive to begin potty training, and I have to say, I totally agree with this assessment.
Anyway, we persevered with trying to get Sausage to go on the potty, trying at the very least to get her to use it first thing in the morning if she woke up dry, and we had varied levels of success. Husband and I discussed different ideas and came up with a reward chart to act as an incentive, and it must be a case of great minds as my Mum called me a couple of days later and said she’d been given some charts by a rep at work, which she’d kept in case we wanted one! We put the chart on the living room wall and promised Sausage one sticker for a wee and two for…well, a number two! Once she reached ten stickers, we told her she could choose her own present as a reward. It took a couple of weeks for her to reach ten, and for a while it all went very slow. I was reluctant and neurotic about leaving her in knickers as I didn’t want wee on the carpet, and it held things up a lot.
Last week, we decided enough was enough. So we put Sausage in knickers and decided what will be will be. We had a fair few accidents, in fact the first day, she went through 5 pairs of knickers (and I spent the majority of my day on my hands and knees with a scrubbing-brush!), and in the subsequent days, the accidents got fewer and farther between. Then, three days ago, something clicked.
Every single call-of-nature has ended up in either the toilet or the potty, we’ve had no accidents, my carpet is pee-free and she’s only worn a nappy for bed (we’ll get to that part of the training at some point, I don’t think it’s essential for her to be dry at night right away, although she does wake up dry most days) In our heart or hearts, I think we knew that Sausage wasn’t ready a year ago. When it comes to our daughter, we very much have the attitude that she’s a bright and fiercely independent child, and she’s done everything else when she was good and ready! Be it walking, talking, reading, she’s decided when she was ready and got on and did it, so I was loath to push her onto the potty when it wasn’t her decision.
It’s a nice feeling, to be honest, to know that we knew our daughter well enough and allowed her the space and freedom to come to it all by herself, and even if we have little accidents in the future, I could not be more proud of my little lady. Although, as a footnote, I have to say, it does seem weird seeing her little tush in knickers and not a nappy!