Angel's potty training diary

Posted by ~Summer~ on October 07, 2011
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I decided to start Angel's potty training when she was 22 months.

There has been a debate on when is the right age to start potty training, some people say that their kids are not toilet trained till they turn 4 or 5, while others start as early as when their babies hit their first birthdays. According to Baby Center, most parents don't start potty training till their kids are 2 1/2 to 3 years old.

However, I felt that Angel was ready because by now, she could communicate with us and understood simple instructions like "Get the toy", "Stand up", "Sit down" etc.

So, here goes her potty training diary.

Day 1
My method of potty training was simply to let Angel run around the house half naked. No, not the top half. I was hoping that this would let her have an increased awareness of when she was going to pee or poop, and that she would be able to run to her potty, which was sitting right in the middle of the living room near her play area, before she leaked.

Fat hope.

There were "accidents" everywhere. She must have peed a minimum of 10 times throughout the day, and to my dismay not a single drip went inside the potty. Sometimes, her pee resembled a trickle from a leaking tap, while other times, it paralleled the Gullfoss waterfalls. I swear there was once she peed, with a surge, continuously for 20 seconds, gosh I thought she was going to flood my kitchen!

Still, I learnt that we should not scold or penalise the child when he/she first starts on potty training in order not to add on unnecessary stress and instead make him/her repel to the idea of it. So, I just bit my tongue, counted from 1-10, then used my ever loving-mum-tone to speak sweetly to her and tell her it would be nice if she could pee on the potty the next time. Ok, by mid day, my tongue hurt and I was already having a backache from bending low and wiping up all the pee corners in my house.

I thought to myself: Will this ever work? 

Day 2
On the second day morning, I removed her diapers and pants first thing in the morning and asked her to sit on the potty. It wasn't easy but with the help of 5-6 story books, I managed to let her sit there for at least 15 minutes.

That was when I felt the first victory in the battle.

Yes, she peed in the potty! I was so elated to hear the "sssshhhhh" sound as her pee came out. Well, to top off that, she actually had a bowel movement and pooped right into the potty too! For a split second, her stools became the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. Well, I even took some pictures of it. That was before I got intoxicated by the stench and realised I should dispose it in the toilet soonest.

Anyway, I think Angel felt my joy and pride in her and she was feeling a little smug too. She followed me all the way to the toilet, watched me rinse off her poop and washed the potty, and even say "Byebye" when I flushed it off. Cute.

I decided to reward her whenever she did it right. No, not with skittles or barbie dolls or gummy bears. Instead, I used her Vitamin C pastilles and cut each of them into quadrants, giving her one tiny little piece each time she used the potty.

She still had accidents later in the day though. From time to time, I would ask her if she needed to pee, she would usually say "No pee pee" but there was once when she said no, then stood up, moved away from the potty and all her pee gushed out in the next second. I almost wanted to scream at her at that point. Arrghh.

Nonetheless, on other occasions, I could tell that she was trying to get to the potty although before she could, her pee would be all over the floor. I wouldn't be angry at that, because at least she tried and I would instead praise her. All I did was to urge her to run like a sprinter and get to the potty in time.

Day 3
Just like yesterday, the first thing we did today when we woke up was to sit at the potty and read books. Once again, she peed and she pooped within ten minutes, much to my joy. Oh, but I wasn't so fanatical as to photograph the stools again today.

The best thing was that today, she started to be able to give me a signal before her pee came out. It was funny because she would say "Hmmm, hmmm" (which was a code for pooping and "Ssshh Ssshhh" should be for peeing instead. Don't ask my why, all our parents taught us that from young.) But for Angel, she would say "Hmmm, hmmm" as long as she felt something coming out. I didn't really mind though, as long as she could give me a signal and I could bring her to the potty in time.

I had set up a reading and play area beside her potty so that we could read books or play some toys while she was on the potty. I guess I was pretty lucky because it wasn't that hard to get her attention and make her sit there for at least a few minutes, or till her pee comes out, even if she initially said "I don't want to sit". Of course, the sweets play a part too.

Guess what? She only had one accident today. Just one! And it was only Day 3! I just wanted to hug her, kiss her and let her know how proud of her I was.


So, that was Angel's potty training experience. I had since promoted her to wearing big girl undies, I bought some which had cute little hearts on them. That was firstly to let her know that she is a big girl now and doesn't need diapers, secondly in the hope that she will keep those cute undies dry, thirdly for hygiene purposes because she would sit down as and when she liked around the house, even in the oily kitchen or not-sparkling-clean toilet. I have to admit though, she somehow looked cuter running around half naked.

When it comes to naptime or bedtime, or when we bring her out to play, she still has on her diapers because I don't expect her to master this so soon. Besides, she's a good drinker and a "milkoholic", so I would rather she continues her daily intake of milk rather than cutting it down just so she wouldn't pee when she sleeps. For all I'm concerned, she is already half potty-trained and I'm satisfied with it for now. She also doesn't need the sweets anymore though I give it to her as occasional treats at times.

Of course, she does have a couple of accidents now and then, like when she gets too engrossed playing with her toys, or when she is bounded in her high chair eating her meal. I don't really blame her for that. And I'm starting to get good at spotting her first sign of wanting to urine, like how she would put her hand on her undies and give me that "I've-got-pee look". In times like this, I would ask her gently if she wants to pee, and nowadays she can give me a honest answer, we would go to the potty and give each other hi-fives after she did her job. She would also diligently remind me to empty her potty every time, which I would do so and she would gleefully say goodbye to her pee.

Well, to anyone who is going to embark on potty/toilet training for your toddler soon, here's wishing you the best of luck! My tip is: Don't rush it, you know best when your child is ready. Don't let your friends or relatives influence your thoughts about starting earlier or later than what you think is the right time. Don't expect success on the first day (unless you are super lucky!) and be armed with some rags to clean up the accident areas. Don't scold your child even if you really can't help it (cursing and swearing to yourself doesn't really help too). Try biting your tongue lightly or taking 10 seconds to calm down each time you feel the rage.

Most importantly, do give lots of praise, hugs and kisses when your child does it right, or nearly right. You might realise that potty training can be a fun, bonding experience after all!


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