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A landmark tinkle to save the morning

7 June 2010 No Comment

There are certain things only another parent can relate to. Such as the fact that my day yesterday started off very rough, yet was instantly saved thanks to my daughter peeing in the toilet!

This is not a typical week for my family. My daughter just began going to a child care center a few mornings a week; a place that functions more like a preschool than day care. It has been going great, but they are closed all of this week. So my daughter is home with me full time this week. It’s no problem, as I’m pretty much used to this arrangement. But now that she is almost two, the days are often more challenging than when she was a baby. Undoubtedly, they are much more physically demanding.

On Day 2 of this 5-day challenge, the beginning to the morning was hindered by my daughter’s insistence that she remove her diaper while I search for a suitable outfit for our park outing. As I was attempting to put her diaper back on, she was pointing at the “big potty.” We just purchased an Elmo seat for the “big potty” as we are in the early stages of toilet training. She was heading towards Elmo.

At 8:15 in the morning, I had not yet received my coffee lift and was not in the mood for the rigors of this scenario. Knowing I needed to do the right thing. I helped her climb on her Elmo seat as I had done multiple times over the previous few days with zero results.

Perhaps, I figured, this will all lead us down the right path and I should not define progress by her actually going to the bathroom in the toilet. Maybe she is just getting comfortable sitting like mommy and daddy do. But taking her diaper off and on all day sounded kind of rough to me.

Soon after I placed her on the “big potty”, with my aching back and state of grogginess making me less than happy, I was suddenly rewarded. With pee!

I can honestly say that I felt a surge of liveliness and fulfillment as my daughter peed in our toilet for the first time. All of the morning’s mishaps were instantly erased, and my patience and decision-making were compensated well beyond the hopes I had for that morning.

Some of the biggest fears I’ve had as a stay-at-home father revolve around diaper changing and toilet training. This is probably no surprise and somewhat expected. For me, a big obstacle is that I tend to look at my daughter as a perfect being, and experiencing her making big, poopy messes is not easy. It may be an odd, quirky perception, but I am just being honest here.

Regardless of the truth, I see myself as excelling in nearly every parenting category, with my aversion to dirty diapers being the primary exception.

Though I am not squeamish about many things, when it comes to babies – and, now, toddlers, – I seem to fall into that stereotypical category of a father who would rather limit his exposure to the entire poo process. At least that is my natural tendency; since I have stayed at home with my daughter I’ve had to overcome this inclination and be just as involved as I am with every other developmental milestone.

It seems to be paying off now! I even created some positive karma apparently. The following morning I stood in dismay and panic as I saw a brown substance trailing down each of my little girl’s legs. “Oh, no, what the hell has happened!” I thought, as I quickly moved in for a closer inspection. I quickly realized that after I let her fill our cat food bowls, she had decided to play with the empty bowl we use to transport the food to the cat food bowls. It is filled with food dust and bits, and this had simply stuck to her legs.

Innocent mistake and crisis averted. We’ll see what happens next around here.

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