Monday, February 04, 2008

Potty Talk

Potty-training... going fabulously! I was super nervous about even training Clare because she is... (whisper) a special needs child. With Jamie, we did the whole "sit-on-the-potty-get-an-M&M" routine for a couple months when he was about 2 years old with small success. Then Clare was born, life got crazy, we moved, and potty-training took a backseat. Or as I like to call it, we took a more laidback "when-he's-ready-to-train-he-will" approach. And Jamie did. Woke up one morning shortly after his third birthday, wanted to buy Spiderman underwear (which we promptly did), and was trained in two days. It was almost too easy. So I've been having internal freak-outs about training Clare.

One thing I knew for sure was that I was not going to use Clare's handicaps, delays, special needs, whatever as an excuse. I borrowed a couple books from the library about "toilet training your child with special needs." And there was nothing in there that was "special." Nothing! Everything they talked about was stuff we did with Jamie, which made me laugh. It also made me realize, once again, to treat Clare normally. Obviously we were not going to start physically training Clare until she could actually walk herself to the bathroom. But I started talking about it with her everytime I changed her diaper. There has been lots of potty talk in our house lately! Then we brought out the little potty and just sat it next to the big one. One day, I asked her if she wanted to sit on the potty. She emphatically stated "no" and left the bathroom. I casually asked again a couple days later and received an even louder "no no no." I had one more trick up my sleeve before taking a break. Elmo and M&M's - Clare's two favorite things. I asked Clare if Elmo could go to the potty and get an M&M. She was all for that idea. So she solemnly watched as Elmo sat on the little potty, then proudly received an M&M. Clare wanted a turn. Fully clothed, mind you, but sitting on her little red and blue throne was enough for an M&M reward.

Flash forward a few weeks, and Clare has graduated to refusing the little potty. She insists on only sitting on the regular toilet (with her potty seat on top or else I think she would fall right in!) and almost always pees. She even asks now to go "pee on potty" and, if I ask her about it, she dances around singing "potty emmies potty emmies." (Her word for M&M's.) She eagerly wants to sit on the potty now. We are working towards the big deal of doing the #2, but I am so pleased with Clare's progress. She is still two months shy of turning three. Another teaching lesson for Mom - don't shortsight my kid. Don't make excuses for her. Let her be a normal kid - potty and all.

11 comments:

Julie said...

Yay Clare. I actually was thinking of getting the potty chair out and introducing it. I know he is not ready but I figure baby steps. He does know if he spreads his feet apart and looks down while standing in front of the tub to pee. I don't think he is completely unaware.

Laura said...

Oh my goodness, you just described my potty training experience with Michaela to a "T", right down to the M&M's......only difference was that she was a Barney fanatic.
I too was frantic, thinking "how do I go about training a special needs kid?" Aaron was a piece of cake, trained himself at 2 1/2. But, when she was ready, she did it, and never had an accident and was trained at night, too. It goes to show us, sometimes the special needs label means squat!

WAY TO GO, CLARE!!!! (& mom, too!)

Amy said...

Excellent news! I put Avery on her potty last night and she look horrified.
xoxo
Amy

Every minute counts.... said...

I am so glad that things are going smoothly! I can't wait until I get to post about the same kind of stuff! We get this surgery behind us, maybe just maybe it will help to "fix" our problems. Abi really does want to be potty trained. She asks to wear underwear and everything. We just put them on over a diaper for now. She goes potty when she does and if she doesn't not a big deal.

I hope things keep going well.
Noel

nichole said...

Yeah Clare :) That's such an achievement - special needs or not. My friend's daughter was 3 and a half before she was close to being trained.

Penny said...

Way to go Clare!

Michelle, Tim, Aidan & Ari said...

Hooray for Clare and for you! Imagine a life without diapers.....

camille said...

WOW! That is fantastic! I'm so proud of her, how wonderful for you guys. I think M and M's will be our reward of choice with Connor. He's such a choco-holic.

Anonymous said...

Hip, hip, hurray!! Yeah, for Clare! I think every step towards being a 'big kid' is a big step. M&M's are great- for any incentive. I still believe that Miss Clare will exceed any & all expectations. Again, congrats, Clare! Love ya, Aunt Joan

Katie said...

Thats Awesome! Go Clare!!
i guess this just proves the importance of chocolate ;-)
xxoo

Tara said...

That is fantastic!! Payton is four and still struggles (lately we've been having a lot of accidents) but she is doing better than I thought she would! I think M&M's would help me with just about anything :)