Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Doody! Doody!

Okay, I could spend my energy writing about our holiday trip to Carrollton, which was simultaneously a huge blessing and a huge source of stress, but instead I'm opting to start the post Christmas blogging season with a funny little glimpse into the mind of a 22-month-old kid just trying to figure things out.

Before you read on, here is my disclaimer. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN OR ARE EASILY GROSSED OUT BY DISCUSSIONS OF BODILY FUNCTIONS (I'm talking to you, Meghan), STOP READING NOW. If you like a good laugh or a frank discussion on the challenges of potty training, read on. Please forgive my Caddyshack reference in the title, too. I couldn't resist.

A few weeks ago, our daughter pooped on her little tiny toilet thanks to the bribe  promise of chocolate. What Jason and I were unprepared for was her reaction--sheer terror and horror when she saw her deposit (see, I can discuss this without being terribly crass). We've been trying to figure out the problem since and have tossed around numerous theories that include everything from her being afraid of a frog shaped tiny toilet to deeper Freudian musings on the anal stage of development.

We see that she's getting ready to potty train. She loathes being wet and as a result is constantly taking off her Pull Up and leaving it in random places. Who doesn't like a good scavenger hunt for a Pull Up with an occasional bonus of stepping in a puddle of pee? She also informs us when a number two is brewing and frets about it until she completes the job. (Who does number two work for?) What puzzles us is her absolute refusal to set foot near her potty to do any business other than reading a good book or taking a load off after playing.

This morning I think I found my answer. My daughter is scared of turds. I don't know how else to say it. She told me it was coming, so I hurried to bathe her. I left the room to go grab her potty, and I heard a whine that led to a shriek of terror. I dashed back into the room to see her scrambling from one end of the tub to the next trying to escape the floater that was chasing her. I pulled the drain and snatched a towel from under the sink while trying to reassure her that all was well.

"It's just poopy, sweetheart. Everyone poops--it's okay."

She was not buying it. As I reached to scoop her up, she backed away one more time with wide-eyed worry as the object of her anxiety inched its way near her. When she was safely nestled in my arms, she looked down at the tub and said "Bye, poopy." I guess every bathtub turd is less frightening when the two of you are not occupying the same space.

So there you have it. My daughter is scared of turds, and I'm at a loss as to how to handle this problem as we get ready to move on to the next stage of her development. Do we personify the little guys and try to make them seem more friendly to her? This method might get confusing once we tell her to wash the poop germs off her hands when she's done. Do we come up with a little story about how all turds are just looking for a drain to make it back to the ocean/sewer? She is a big fan of Finding Nemo.

We could go very technical and explain the digestive process. This route is what we took with the boys, who in turn made me read the part about how excess food turns into poopy and is pushed out through the rectum OVER and OVER and OVER. I'm sure it will come to us, and I'll be a bit saddened to put potty training behind us for the last time, hopefully without completely traumatizing our daughter. These are the days.

P.S. Honey, I swear one day I'll make a decent living at this writing gig, and all of your shame and embarrassment will be worth it. Don't stop believing, dude.

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