Wednesday, February 28, 2007

a bigger girl

It was quite a big day, Monday.

M and I had the day to ourselves, as I'd taken the day off to spend with her after being gone for so long. We spent a bit of time with a friend and her daughter who is M's age, and they spent a few hours alternating between fighting and hugging. M noticed her friend wearing big girl underwear, as her friend is a bit farther along (or shall we say more honestly her mom is a bit farther along) in the whole toilet training situation. On the way home M said Me big girl pants? So I figured, ok then. Let's do this.

So we went shopping a bit later and M got to choose between several commercially branded selections. We sat on the floor in the aisle and debated the differences between Tinkerbell and My Pretty Pony, Hello Kitty, Dora and Elmo. It was a difficult decision and while I might have chosen differently, we ended up with My Pretty Pony and Dora. Joy abounds.

So we drive home, M holding the packages in her hands, saying show daddy? show daddy? to which I said of course baby, Daddy will be so excited. So we arrived home and M eagerly tore off the packages, pulled each pair out and laid them on the floor. Once again, we sat and explored the options, the colors. The joy continues.

It should be noted that during this entire episode we talked (I talked) liberally about the correlation between big girl pants and the big girl toilet. I did. I swear.

So M rips off her diaper and pulls on her first pair. Declines all need for BGT usage. After about 4 minutes she rips them off and tries on another. Repeat. It's smashingly adorable.

So all the while I keep mentioning the BGT, to which M replied with her new favorite (so not mine) saying No way! Along the way J got home, ooohed and aaahed appropriately, and then after hearing the no ways! when the repeating of the BGT usage was mentioned said Perhaps we should have a strategy for this before just jumping in. Ahem. Useful insight. Especially as strategies have proven useful here at Casa Talia. Like that birth control pill usage strategy we were using 3.3 years ago. I'm just saying.

So we kept celebrating the excitement of the BGP. M was in glory, exploring the non-diaper situation, the newness, the PONIES! And the whole time she was bouncing off the walls, dancing, sashaying around, she's money, our M.

One accident occurred. Whoops. M tried to deny it. Not wet, Mama, not wet! But it was wet, sweet M, and thus the need to use the BGT, sweets, so let's try again. No way!

And then the miracle. She sat on the BGT, and went. Joy on her face, mommy and daddy cheering as we all sat in our tiny bathroom. M leaps off the BGT and into my arms. High fives her daddy. She's done it. By god, she's done it.

It should be noted she wore them to daycare yesterday over her diaper so she could show her friends. Yes way!

Does a time ever arrive when it's possible to feel like you are not simply winging it?


The Atavist said...

h... the joys of raising children. The title made me chuckle, because it brought back a memory. My son, years ago, after having been told a gazillion times that he could do something when he was 'bigger,' one day announced to me: "I'm a bigger boy now, Daddy." He logic was irrefutable, and he got to do what he wanted.

Sober Briquette said...

What a big step! Yay Jen. (and M of course, but toilet training is much harder on the parents than on the kids.)

Lorenzo will be there soon, too. If possible, I think I'm dreading it more than I did the first time around. A friend has a certain potty chair I'm going to get, as if the equipment really makes a difference

Fiona's birthday is coming up, and she's been saying, "I'll do that when I'm older, like five." As if there will be a giant shift in the universe.

So, the answer to your question is no.

Tabba said...

For all of my planning on the situation, all I get out of my girl is: sitting on the potty with NO action. Wear a pear of panties? Uh, no way. She's got the whole thing backward.

And I believe Grace would have chosen Dora, as well. Despite the fact that Hello Kitty totally Rocks!

No parenting, by nature, I believe is totally winging it. Every plan I have ever devised, in sinister plotting and laughing, has always been squashed 1.5 seconds after it has been deployed.

Nancy said...

Congrats to M! And to her parents!

I have found that the character panties are quite a life saver in potty training. Since my Mimi doesn't have a lot of character-themed apparel, having the princess/Dora panties was quite the exciting thing, AND she was loathe to get them wet. Brilliant. I can now see why Underoos were so popular back in the day. ;-)

Mad Hatter said...

I can live with the winging it as long as I get those wonderful, irreplaceable moments. What a lovely description of this all, Jen.

nomotherearth said...

Great post. I'm pretty much winging it all the time. I think you did fabulously well.

Anonymous said...

"Does a time ever arrive when it's possible to feel like you are not simply winging it?"

For me? Not yet!

Metro Mama

NotSoSage said...

Ah, this is exactly what's been going on at our house the last few weeks. We have been plied with Dora, Pooh and Curious George underwear and Mme L has to try on every pair as soon as she gets it. We've had little successes with training, but nothing long-term yet (although, apparently, she's pretty consistent at daycare, but not at home).

So far, the winging is working. You, my dear, have a sweet, sweet little girl and that's a testament to you and J.

Thailand Gal said...

Having never raised children, I can't say for certain but "winging it" is likely one of those immutable laws of the process.

Good for M! I think she'll like being a "big kid". :)



deb said...

My oldest turns 23 next month and I'm still winging it. How do you get a job for a boy who's on parole, just out of jail for selling drugs, and living in a halfway house? See, still winging it.

mamatulip said...


And congrats, Mom. :)

To answer your question, no. Not at all. LOL!

J Fife said...

Under some very bad advice, I was on an extemporaneous speech team in high school. I totally sucked. My parenting experience has felt a lot like those competitions. I'm standing around waving my arms, trying to sell some concept and smiling, smiling, smiling. I keep hoping the smile will get me some points. I still suck.

Deezee said...

I remember when my son woke up one morning and said, "I want to wear underwear to school." He'd never gone near a potty. I honored his wish while hiding my thoughts, put him in underwear, drove him to preschool and pulled the teacher aside and said, "He's in underwear and has never used a toilet." With a casual expression she said, "Don't worry about it. Bring us a few spare pairs and we'll take care of it." And just like that toilet training was done. I love preschool! ;)

Oh, The Joys said...

...or maybe learn to embrace and love the winging it...

(I'm still struggling with this one.)

(and daycare trained The Mayor).

Penny said...

There's always a new phase right around the corner, just after you've mastered the last one. lol!

I kept waiting for the learning curve to level out.. it doesn't.

But, good job on the toilet training!

I have a four year old in night time pants, still.

Small bladder?

Limited time to sleep as it is for Mommy is more like it.


GOOD FOR M!!! Yaaa!!

Lynanne said...

I think just winging it is the best way to potty train. Its far less stressful for both mom and kid :) Congrats on the success so far!

Mayberry said...

Just like Penny said - the second you feel like you are not winging it, some totally new thing will show up to blow your mind.

But yay for undies!

Deezee said...

I just noticed the 'diaper free' ad alongside this post...a little subliminal advertising?? ;)

Julie Pippert said...

No, I think it's pure winging it forever. I'm pretty sure if I called my mom and asked she'd admit that she still wings it. And her kids are old. ;)

Congrats on the potty.

My decided, "I turn two, I use potty."

This week she's managed to stay dry an entire day, even through nap.

Please don't get me hopeful. I see an end to the diaper work. I mustn't look yet. LOL

They are awfully cute, though. I can just picture your M.

Her Bad Mother said...

From what I hear, it always feels like winging it.

Which is why mothers grow wings.

(yay to your big big girly bird!)

meno said...

That's how it works. I put underwear on Em when she asked, explained to her that she would have to use the potty when she wore them. She peed in them, looked down at herself and said "Oh."

And that was pretty much it.

Wing away lady, wing away.

Laurie said...

Nope, that time never comes Jen. You wing it for life.

flutter said...

My mom still calls me and asks if I feel like she knew what she was doing.

She absolutely does. Yay little M!

Heather said...

There is a way other than winging it?

Emily said...

I loved this story. It seems to ring true of so many things in get inspired and then it's more then pretty underwear...and then there's success. I really enjoyed this.

KC said...

Adorable M story. Joles only likes to put on her daddy's tightey whiteys over her pants. That's about as far as we've gotten. Oh, and my underwear around her neck.

Can you believe no manuals here?

Hel said...

Like always just what I needed to read.

You are both so lucky to have each other.

Mrs. Chicken said...

I cannot tell you how I fret about the BGT. It is the only parenting task so far that has me completely freaked out.

I love the image of you all in the bathroom cheering.

Hooray for M!

Lucia said...

I love it that you've shared this remarkable joy for her and for you. I wish I felt this way when I bought new undies!

Juliness said...

Great story and perfect description of life's most unpredictable ride. Having watched my bro go through the potty-training deal 3 times, my patience goes out to you. Hang in there.

kristen said...

A wore big girl panties over her nighttime pull-ups for a good year, it's a good compromise.
She was totally peer-pressured into going on the potty. It is SO liberating and your girl sounds much like mine in that she'll do the potty thing on her own time. Oh and bribes, they totally worked. I'm just saying.

s@bd said...

dear sweet mother of all things good,

that was easy.

(Maybe oscar will be like M? Dare to dream, I always say.)

AND WHERE IS THE VISUAL VERIFICATION?! it's awfully hard to 'enter the letters as they are shown in the image' if THERE IS NO IMAGE.

grrr ...

(had this window open for TWELVE HOURS waiting for the visual verification to show up. silly-dumb blogger!)

Bob said...

what? there's a structured, planned way to raise kids? damn. I guess I didn't get that memo. oh, well. only 21 years too late.

toilet training has been, for some, a traumatic experience. or at least a trying one. maybe M's enthusiasm for BGP will make this a positively easy one.

and them i will be profoundly jealous that once again you have made parenting (appear) effortless and me (actually) a moron.

ewe are here said...

Woo hoo! And she's on her way!

We're so not there yet...and I don't even know where to begin when we do get there.

Lotta said...

Never. I think that's the big secret of parenthood. Our kids think we're geniuses but we're just bluffing our way through it all.

Congrats to you and your big girl. How cute!!!

urban-urchin said...

To answer your question- nope not as far as I can tell.

And yay M! Big girl pants! That's exciting stuff. The boy got big boy pants from the grandparents for Valentines Day (don't ask) and has NO desire to use BBT either.

slouching mom said...

This was lovely. I think you guys got the toilet training thing just right.

Momish said...

Wow! How proud you must be of M. We are just turning the corner on this next step at chez momish. We have the potty out, but so far, it is just a curious toy. I will have to remember that undies are a HUGE motivator when the time comes!

Ruth Dynamite said...

This is big, mother! Congratulations to you and your big girl.

lildb said...

jesus, Jen. I think that every fucking day. winging it seems to be the thing I need to have inscribed on a plaque to be hung above every door in the house.

thanks for this story. makes me feel like I'm not alone. you're good at that. (also, congratulations on the potty-in-the-toilet!)