Lately we’ve had a major potty training problem, but then when DON’T we have a potty training problem around these here parts? I know there will be a time in my children’s life when trying to prevent accidents and cleaning them up when they occur will no longer be the norm. Right now that time seems so far in the future that it’s on the verge of being fictional.
Anyway, ever since Rose was apparently mortally wounded by the sound of the toilet flushing at the park, she’s refused to use public toilets. Often she can get away with this, but sometimes she can’t. Lately she’s had a streak of bad luck and bad timing with her attempts to only go potty at home. Keep in mind, she is refusing to use pubic toilets even though I’ve gone to the trouble of carrying a potty seat with me wherever I go, have promised to NEVER flush the toilet while she’s still in the stall and have promised to protect her and make sure the potty would never ever hurt her.
No dice for forever. Rose was getting so upset about the prospect of having to use the potty in public or have an accident that she didn’t even want to leave the house. We’d have massive blowouts just to get out the door. It was absolutely ridiculous.
Finally after one particularly bad public accident, I had absolutely had it. I was ranting on and on about how public potties were FINE and she would be safe and what else could we do to make this better when it occurred to me that my thoughts on the matter had no effect on her. Who cares if Mommy wants her to go potty? I’m just nobody. There’s somebody in Rose’s life FAR more important than me.
So I called in Cinderella to help me to convince Rose to use the potty in public again.
“Cinderella wants you to use the potty!” I said. Her potty seat is actually in a bag with a picture of all the Disney princesses on it. I made the bag move to have Cinderella talk to Rose in a high-pitched voice. “Please use the potty in stores, Rose! I’ll be so proud of you! In fact, I’m going to give Mommy chocolate to give to you if you go to the potty in the store.”
Rose was intrigued and agreed to use the potty at the next store we went to. Even though we raced across a giant store to get to the bathroom, when we finally got there she was still apprehensive. Cinderella had to speak to her several times, but eventually she finally sat on her potty seat.
Unfortunately, it was too soon after her massive pee accident. Rose’s bladder was completely empty! She burst into tears and refused to leave the toilet!
“It’s ok! You can get down! You still get chocolate just for sitting!”
“NO! I HAVE TO STAY HERE!” Much wailing followed.
We were in that bathroom a LONG time before Cinderella and I finally convinced her that it was ok if she didn’t pee just now. The important thing was that she TRIED to use a public toilet again.
Then Cinderella slipped me some money and we bought her a big bag of Hersey’s Kisses.
“Cinderella is so proud of me!” Rose triumphantly announced when we got back to the car.
Though public potties haven’t been all sunshine and roses since this event transpired, she hasn’t had another accident and is using public potties again. She even admitted to me that maybe the flushes weren’t so scary after all.
“Flushes can’t hurt me!”
This has been your second public service announcement that even though it seems totally safe to send your two small children alone into a single stall bathroom while you stand right outside the door with a sleeping baby, you WILL pay for it. Shortcuts never pay.