Thursday, November 15, 2012

Are you Ready?

My oldest has been potty trained since he turned 2 without much incident.  After about three days, he was accident free and I thought, "why do people make such a big deal about this?"  Then came night potty training.

He simply hasn't wanted to do it.  I asked the doctor and he said to give him time.  Most kids aren't ready until they are 3 1/2 or 4.  I didn't worry much until we hit the 3 1/2 mark then I started thinking that he should be ready by now.

But he wasn't.  He loved his diapers and cried when we brought home Pull-Ups.  I let him know they were there when he was ready and let it go for awhile.  One day, we had run out of his diapers and Pull-Ups were the only option.  I told him it was only for one nap and then I would buy new diapers.  He was not a happy guy.  He got up to go to the bathroom six times in an hour and wasn't able to go to sleep because he was so worried about peeing his pants.  Eventually, he did rest and awoke with a wet Pull-Up.

But he wasn't upset.  He was filled with  complete joy - "Mommy!  Did you know you can pee all you want in Pull-Ups, too?!"  

That kid is too smart.  I tried to explain that yes, you can, but the goal is to have a dry Pull-Up.  We set up a reward system where he would earn stickers for every dry Pull-Up and that worked for about a day.  He said to me, "I just really like peeing in my Pull-Ups".  I guess that said it all.

I told him to let me know when he felt like he was ready.  I thought it was silly that I continued to push my agenda.  Especially about something so small.  And then, out of nowhere, he was ready.

He said, "Mommy, I think I'll just sleep in my undies."  And he did. And he hasn't had any accidents nor has he had trouble sleeping.  He was ready.

It's so easy to push our kids when we think it is time for them to be able to do something.  Whether it's potty training, sports or school, they have their own timeline.  For me, it is so much less pressure to let them lead me and to listen to them when they say in their own way, "Not yet, mommy.  I'm not ready yet."  They have the beautiful gift of feeling like they have all the time in the world.  Who am I to take that away from them?

How do you remind yourself to let your kids wait until they are ready?

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