"You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up."

Deuteronomy 6:5-7

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Day One

For those of you not interested in this kind of post...I do apologize. I write this for all Mom's with little one's yet to be potty trained.

The time has come for my littlest guy...to potty train. He has been showing signs that he is ready for weeks now (awareness of wetness, taking off his diapers, staying dry for longer periods). In my procrastination and lack of desire to do the work, I have put it off. Alas, here we are, before our 4th baby arrives, before the start of another school year and I can't help but think, NOW is the best time!

For my last two boys, I read and used the methods outlined in the book "Toilet Training in Less Than A Day" by Azrin and Foxx. Jay was just over 2 years old when he started and Nathan was a whopping 18 months old during his training. So the time is just right for Austin who will be 2 in a few weeks. Although, I know for boys, this seems early but I probably should mention we use cloth diapers for our babies and I am a firm believer that because they can FEEL the wetness in a cloth diaper, they are prone to potty train earlier.

The premise of the book is simple, "to teach your child to toilet himself with the same independence as an adult and without the need for reminders, continued praise or assistance." This is done through a very thorough method. It starts with the Doll-That-Wets-Herself. Using the doll to demonstrate to the child how one uses a potty.
I think dear little Austin has enough brothers around to show him that so we skipped this step.
Next is creating the motivation for correct toileting  by approval. Essentially, rewarding them for each step achieved along the way. This is what our basket of rewards looks like...

Yep, that's right. Pure sugar!

The next step is training through accidents. The child is taught to practice the potty routine when they have wet their pants. Part of the training also teaches them how to change their own wet pants and help in cleaning up the mess. This is the most time consuming but most efficient step. The last step involves gradually removing the need for reminders and rewards.

Before I began, I was sure to ask God for help for this tedious task. Day one began with an encouragement. The first attempt on the potty was successful and proved to me what I hoped was true, he was indeed ready. He responded well to the rewards and approval but the practice through wet pants proved trying to his patience (and mine). It was a looooooong day but I'm glad to say there were more success's than accidents. And the Lord was faithful to provide patience that was not my own and strength in time of need.

I pray for the same for day two!

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