As of Monday, August 3rd, we are officially potty training Princess. She is 18 months old and obviously aware of her bodily functions. So, I've swallowed my apprehension and let my landlady know that I will be using the washing machine a little more frequently for a while.
When Princess was still a tiny baby, my sister-in-law told me that she started putting her son on the potty chair before he was six months old and by the time he was two and a half, he was completely potty trained. Without realizing that this particular technique required a parent to potty train their child for at least two years before claiming success, I trotted on over to Babies R' Us and purchased a Baby Bjorn infant potty chair. When I got home, I stripped Princess down to her onesie and set her on the potty chair. She thought it was great fun and obliged me by peeing in her potty chair. I was thrilled and began imagining not having diapers on my grocery bill in a few short months. Then reality set in. My sister wasn't quite as enthusiastic as I was and, although she promised to put Princess on the potty chair throughout the day while I was at work, I knew she would forget. Before long, I was tired of having to unsnap onesies, remove diapers, and hold Princess on the potty chair countless times a day, especially when it became clear that when she peed in the potty chair the first time I put her on it, she had done it to give me a false sense of security. So I put the Baby Bjorn in the closet and reminded myself how much I loved changing diapers.
Now at 18 months of age, it's time to begin potty training Princess again. I'm not going to stress about it though; if she's not getting the idea after a few weeks, we'll take a break and try it again when she gets older. When she woke up on Monday morning, I put Princess on her potty chair and she let loose with a stream of you-know-what. I praised her as if she had just been elected President of the United States and rewarded her with a blue M&M. Then I took her off the potty chair to show her her accomplishment. She was very proud of herself and decided to celebrate by swishing her hands in her handiwork. I decided that that would be a good time to show her how to wash her hands. After that, we ceremoniously flushed the contents of the potty chair down the toilet.
Because disposable diapers are so absorbent (which is a quality I've always appreciated about them), I borrowed some cloth diapers from my sister to use during the early days (or weeks or months) of potty training so that Princess can actually feel when she is wet and hopefully develop an aversion to that sensation. I still plan on using disposables during naptime and bedtime. I'm not quite ready to tackle nighttime training yet. On that subject however, I was pleasantly surprised when I woke Princess this morning. I took her diaper off and found it completely dry. This has happened before and I'm aware that, unless she had a lot to drink shortly before bed, she doesn't fill her diaper until the morning hours. I'm hoping that this is an indication that nighttime potty training will be a breeze.
My plan for potty training is that Princess will be completely potty trained in a few weeks (cue snickers of disbelief from more experienced parents). She hasn't said anything about it yet, but I have a feeling that Princess may not have the same plan. I'm hoping we can compromise and come up with a workable solution.
I know I should probably give some advice about potty training since it would go well with this post, but I'd rather receive advice about that subject at this point.