Sunday, January 27, 2008

Yes, I've been rather absent

Not sure why. Streppy Christmas led into something else that I'm pretty much over now, but I've been tired. I've started several posts and then stopped because they weren't even to the standard of what I like to call my "Mediocre Mommy Blog" where spelling and grammatical errors are allowed to stand for years (and years.)

So, let's talk about Devin. I'm sure you've been checking almost daily to hear about the latest status of potty training.

It was going splendidly for weeks. And, then we took a mini-vacation to Niagara Falls. And, he did splendidly until the way home. We had just entered the greater Buffalo area when Devin told us he needed to go. There is not one, NOT ONE, easily accessible gas station or fast food place on whatever interstate we were on in Buffalo. Not one, and I am not exaggerating.

So, we ended up taking an exit with a Hospital near some stadium at the edge of Buffalo. The town looked scary from the interstate, but Trevor had to use the bathroom, too, and we figured that there would be a McDonald's or another fast food place near a hospital. With the help of our tom-tom, we did find what was easily the scariest KFC I've ever been in. If Buffalo, NY is anything like that KFC and that particular part of town we were in, then it's safe to say it was the scariest KFC in the scariest town I've ever been in. It was scary from the moment we pulled into the snow covered parking lot and spied the graffiti on the building. We were so scared that we locked the doors. We never lock the doors. Upon entering scary KFC, we spied what appeared to be bullet proof glass that was stowed, but could be used after closing to separate the kitchen from the dining room.

So, the bathrooms at the scariest KFC in the scariest city in America were, hmmm...scary. Devin refused to use the scary toilet. And, at some point on the way home, he reverted to using his pull-up. And, later at home, he redefined "potty trained" to mean changing his own diaper.

A Brief Note on the Scariest KFC...the cashiers were angels. They commented on my immensely cute, but suddenly shy, Devin. Then, they coaxed him off my shoulder with a little bag of Teddy Grahams. They asked if we were there to bring our child to the doctor. Seemed an odd question, but we had taken the hospital exit. I think they questioned our sanity in bringing our children to the scariest KFC in America, but thought it must be OK if we were taking said children to the hospital. They were good women in a scary place.

The scary toilet helped Devin understand that he has standards when it comes to toileting himself. Since our return from Canada, we've been able to get him back on the right path, though now it seems less clear when the path will end, and he has several potty accidents a day now. Before, he was happy to potty on the toilet, and after he had at least one poop, he could wear underwear safely.

Now, he isn't happy to potty on just any toilet. It must be flushed. I know what you're thinking. Don't you flush? Sure, I do, but sometime Trevor doesn't. He's a little fearful of things, and for that reason, I will never allow him to attend a revival at a Southern Baptist Church (they'll talk about demons if I remember my Southern Baptist revivals). But also for this reason, sometimes, he doesn't flush. Devin, however, wants his toilets to be pristine. Which leads to the next thing. Toileting in a public restroom is only rarely acceptable to Devin. And, if he's wearing a pull-up, it's even rarer. It's only with bribes of apple juice can I get him to actually go potty in a public toilet. Prior to the scary KFC, public toilets were just another fine place to show off his newly acquired skill.

It's like a broken promise. He told me he might or he might not go potty. But, then he did. And, for weeks, he only had one potty accident. And, I told his teachers how excited I was, and that I knew it was going to go fast. And, as far as potty goes, we were right there. We still had to work on the next part, but I simply marveled at how easy it was. I thought that everyone should really just wait until their kid is ready! I probably even had moments when I felt superior to those people who actually potty trained their kid instead of just waiting for their kid to potty train himself.

And, then we visited a scary KFC, and it's all undone. I mean, we're back on track now, but I see more obstacles than before. That KFC was really just a scary place.

But, wait?! Did you say you went to Niagara Falls in January? Yes. Yes I did. Even though our dollar is weak, it was cheaper to go to the indoor water park in Canada than to stay in the US. I guess it's supply and demand. Americans wanted to go to indoor water parks during Martin Luther King Weekend, and none near us had openings or they were prohibitively expensive. Up in Canada, we got an excellent rate and it wasn't crowded at all. It was only about 5 hours from home. Oh, the falls were cool, too. We looked from a distance. But, they were cool. As I paddled in the wave pool in the best indoor water park I've ever enjoyed, I couldn't help but think that Niagara Falls in January is America's best kept mini-vacation secret. Food was expensive because of our weak dollar. But, we got lots of coupons because it was their off peak time. So, it worked out just fine. Canada Rocks. Buffalo, NY...not so much.

Part 2.5:
I read 1.5 books on our trip. Fantastic! Long Road Trips are awesome!!

I want a share a quote from the first book I read. The Road by Cormac McCarthy is the story of a Man and his son traveling to the Southern Atlantic coast in post-apocalyptic America. The Man is a good Man, and he tries to teach his son to be good, too. Here's the quote, and it is what the Man says about his Boy very early on in the book.

If he's not the word of God God never spoke.

(I would put it in quotation marks, but Cormac McCarthy doesn't use them, so neither shall I.)

Shouldn't we all feel this way about our children? Even those children who require pristine toilets for continued potty training success... Especially those children.


Anonymous said...

Devin sounds very determined to have things his way with potty training. I don't blame him for not wanting to go in a scary bathroom. Missed your post, glad you are back to posting. by the way got a juicer and lots of cabbage. Love you all, MOM

Jenny said...

Tricia -
my youngest refused to go in public potties initially (mostly because of the super-forceful flushers in public restrooms scared him). I carried a little potty chair in the trunk of my car for months, for just that reason. I also let him pee in the backyard just to let him get used to the concept of peeing standing up without peeing on his shoes, but that may not be feasable for you. (its also hard to untrain: "Mom, can I go pee in the grass?" "No! This is the police station!")

Busy_Woman said...

He's just funny. He was home today with a cough, and when he finally went potty, it was like this...

"I want to use the little potty."

He came out of the bathroom with no pants on.

"I want to use the toilet upstairs."

He came back down naked.

"I want to use the big toilet down here."

He acted like he was going to pee standing up but decided against that and sat down on the little potty.

And didn't go.

I'm just going to have to accept this challenge whose name is Devin...

But, I've been thinking that a little toilet seat would be good to have (if only he would use it.)