Potty Training: A Marathon, Not a Sprint

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When Matt and I found out that we were pregnant for the second time we were surprised, excited, and a little terrified. Our little girl was approaching two years old, still sitting in the tiny car seat that carried her home from the hospital, and still wearing diapers. The image flashed in my head: of two babies in diapers at the same time? Oh hell no! I immediately set out on a quest to graduate her to “big girl” status. When she turned two years old, over the coming months, we got her the “big girl” car seat, put her crib in the nursery and bought her a “big girl” bed. We threw out the diapers, pulled out the training undies, and introduced a training potty that played princess music every time something hit the bowl. With unwavering consistency anytime she looked like she had to pee, I jumped up like a pee-crazed-banshee and rushed her to the potty. Each time my little girl would scream and cry, and I realized that I was freaking her out. My goal to potty train her by the time the new baby came was not her goal, I felt terrible. I put a diaper back on her and decided to take a step back to do some real soul searching.  Forcing my baby to grow up so fast just so that I wouldn’t have to change more diapers was unfair, and so we decided to abandon the potty-training efforts. For weeks, her cute little training potty sat quietly in the corner of her room next to the drawer full of training undies. One afternoon as I was doing household chores I heard the pleasant sound of the training potty music. I calmly made my way to my daughter’s room, careful not to rush in and freak her out. I just smiled, and she smiled back, and with the hugest, cutest, most proud smile she said, “I went pee pee in the potty!” I told her how proud of her I was, and how awesome it was, and I moved on. It only took a few more times of her going “pee pee in the potty” for me to realize that this was her thing now. She had reached the point where she was ready to use the potty herself. Within a few weeks, her growing excitement in everyone’s potty habits encouraged her to graduate to the “big potty” in the family bathroom. We also had a new bathroom game, 30 questions about peepee-puupuu, with our inquisitive little cheerleader. I breathed a sigh of relief for our plan. Together we pick out cute undies to wear, cherish every peepee-puupuu moment, encourage another try after accidents happened, and we haven’t looked back since. Next up? Tackle diaperless bedtime, I’m pretty sure we’ll figure that one out too.

Felise Guillory Moglia
Tinybeans Voices Contributor

Felise Guillory Moglia lives in Oakland, California. She is the mother of two young children, wife to a lucky guy, an opinionated foodie, and a forward thinker.