Amy: Do you see the light at the end of the tunnel?
Me: I can see the coffee at the end of my mug. [shrugs shoulders]
Though the great potty training struggle continues, things are certainly looking brighter these days. Piper has been using”mama’s potty” a lot more this week. On Thursday she actually used it twice, and sat on it a third time trying. In fact, she wanted to use the potty so bad, she cried when she couldn’t go. I tried to tell her it was all right. She yelled back, “It’s not all right!” It means a lot for her to complete the task, and to see me being so proud of her. Afterward, I always tell her I will write to mama to let her know Piper used the potty. She always asks in her little voice, “…and mama will be proud of me?” I just say, “Honey, of course she will,” and smile.
Yesterday she used the potty first thing in the morning, before she even got dressed. The “potty chart” Amy made is working now. Piper likes getting her stickers, and she always insists on placing them on the chart herself. If she gets enough stars in a row, she gets a prize from her “princess box.” She did so good yesterday, she even advanced to another level. As Austin Powers would say, she learned who #2 works for. She was so happy and proud, when we all went to the store together later that day, she even did a little dance while sitting in the cart.
For a time, I lived in San Francisco with jazz musicians the Braxton Brothers. We once had a talk about what life would be like if we ever became successful touring musicians. They talked about their friends who played in the band Tony! Toni! Tone!, and how they had to play the same song every night. As anyone would, they got tired of playing and hearing their hit, “Feels Good.” Even doing something you love can become tedious if you repeat it too much. I adore my daughter and love spending time with her more than anything, but it simply is time for a change. I don’t have any expectations of life being any easier, just different. I have been doing this for the better part of three and-a-half years. That is longer than any one job I have ever had.
We have a strange dynamic in the house. Piper and I spend just about every waking moment together. My wife spends as much time with her as she can, but working full time+ keeps her very busy. There’s something about being away, and then having that homecoming moment. I see Piper get so excited when Amy comes home. Every day she cries out, “Mommies home!” I wish I could have that moment- except I’m always here, always with her. They say absence makes the heart grow fonder. But since we don’t spend any time apart, what does that mean for us?
But there are more than selfish reasons behind my desire for a change. Piper really needs to start school ASAP. The structure would do her well, and she needs to socialize more with other kids her age. She also needs recess, playtime on jungle gyms, and messy art projects. I know it’s detrimental to her development for her to remain at home any longer. A change would be the best thing for us all. And we’re so close, we just have a little more work to do.
How long did potty training take you and your child? Did it happen all in one day, as some attest? Or did it take a span of time?