Friday, January 23, 2009

Silence is Golden . . . and results in clean pants

At the risk of blowing the whole deal, I hear by announce that Zane is potty trained.

(Knocking on press board desk, basement paneling, and nearby shelf).

No, really, ye of little faith, my son has finally grasped the concept that sitting it wet pants, or hauling around other fragrant loads, is not actually very fun.

If you recall, because I'm vain enough to believe that you have been keeping up with our saga, I vowed to "Shut-up" on the entire topic of potty training on December 9th. Less than a week later I realized that my strategy was actually working and embraced the idea of firing myself from training Zane. No, I didn't hire someone else to do it . . . I simply let go and told Zane he was a big boy.

Over and over and over I told him. I rewarded attempts. I ignored mistakes. I continued to tell him how much I loved having a big boy.

On January 10th, his 4th birthday, Zane announced that he was now "big" and stopped messing in his pants. Since then, we've had the typical "I don't want to stop playing so I'll have an accident" accident, of which he ends up changing his clothes himself.

So, December 9th to January 10th . . . who knew?

If I were to write a book on potty training it would begin and end like this: "Just shut-up and get out of your child's way. Let them bask in the reward that THEY experienced personal success, rather than having it forced on them." The end. I'm not thinking anyone is going to give me a book deal.

Just yesterday:

"Mommy, I am so proud of myself. I am such a big boy."
"Yes, you are Zane. I always knew you were a big boy."
"Mommy, I am so proud of you too, because you use the potty. I am proud of both of us. I'm just proud of everyone!"

There is something to be said for Zane making his own decision to use the bathroom - he experienced personal success. His confidence shot up, not because of me and my constant compliments, but because he learned that he is indeed big and capable of conquering tough, scary stuff. He knows that HE DID IT.

So, aside from the occasional accident, which will happen from time to time, and aside from bedtime, which we're not even touching, we're done.

He did it. I did nothing to further the process other than:
  • Positive rewards
  • Shutting up
Thank you Lord for zipping my big mouth.

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