I sat down this morning to grace you with my profound wisdom and decided that THIS is the direction I should lead you down.
One of my best friends has three boys.
They are all close in age, close to making her hair turn grey.
Sometimes I sit back and watch the insane chaos in her house and giggle. Because when you know someone as well as I know her, laughing at them is acceptable.
Often she will catch me laughing and join me.
Or toss a curse word my way in the most loving, sarcastic way that she can.
Then we hide in the laundry room and eat chocolate. Just kidding, but it has crossed my mind.
She and her husband have both been blogging about parenting these three little guys.
If you can’t laugh, you’d cry.
They do a fabulous job of finding the joy in the midst of the chaos.
One day, they will look back at these and find the treasure of growing three boys up into men.
For now, they are just focused on the parental-butt wiping phase.
So without further ado….The Joyful and Tired Dad:
For those of you who are easily offended by bathroom humor or are too disgusted when talking about all things toilet-related, this post isn’t for you. But for those of you who can’t help but laugh at a good fart, you are in for a treat.
I wanted to write down some stories about our boys and the toilet. Because 1) I think they are hysterical, 2) so I won’t forget these stories and 3) because I will have documented proof to embarrass them at a later date preferably high school graduation or their wedding reception. At this time I have officially potty-trained 3 boys for which I am going to make a t-shirt for myself and award myself a medal. I am still in talks with the mayor about earning a key to the city for this heroic feat but so far they’ve only offered a gold-plated plunger, which I will proudly accept and display on our mantle. Let me break down each kid individually.
At this time is 7 years old and has mastered the toilet. He being our first, we probably spent $500 – $1000 on all types of baby toilet seats, aiming targets for the toilet bowl, Playskool toilets that played songs when you flushed, and special educational DVDs like “Dora visits el bano” and “Thomas the Train goes toot toot at the station but poop poop in the potty.” But of course, Zachary was going to potty train when he was good and ready. Don’t you just hate those parents who say, “yes my little Jenny just looked at the potty and said ‘I want to use that from now on’ and we never had to do anything. She potty trained herself.” But here I am looking into a recurring payment plan with Pampers due to the diaper debt and wondering if you’ll be able to see the adult diaper under his graduation robe. Zachary waited and waited until he was ready. But he finally did get it.
One story I remember when he was 3. The back story is, like all parents, whenever Zachary would pee we would throw a “pee party” and cheer and yell because of the success. Well one time I took him into the men’s restroom with me and had him stand against the wall while I washed my hands. Well another man came in to use the urinal and I could see Zachary curiously looking at him as we stood there in silence. And as soon as Zachary heard the pee hitting the urinal, Zachary yelled to me, “Daddy, HE DID IT!!!!!” So excited that this man was able to go pee pee in the urinal. He threw him his own “pee party.” I always wonder if that was last time that man was ever able to pee in a urinal again.
Another story about Zachary and urinals. Around the same time in another public restroom and just discovering what they were, picked up a urinal cake and showed me, asking, “Daddy, what is this?” After throwing up and having him put it back, I replied, “well its poisonous and you only get to touch it once. So never touch it again if you want to live. Now lets go take a bath in bleach and never tell your mother.” Well, actually I just screamed and told him never to touch it and had that same face you are wearing right now for about a week.
Currently, as much as I am glad we are out of the diaper phase, I don’t know if this next phase is any better: the butt-wiping phase. Now the 2 younger boys can hold their respective 1’s and 2’s, but I am still in charge of clean-up on aisle 2. Drew, the 4 year old, picked up “holding it” and making it to the toilet pretty quickly but he is still unsure of the hygiene part of toileting.
Lindsey tells the story of recently after Drew had gone poop in the potty, jumped up from the toilet and ran back into the living room to watch TV. Well he plopped down on the carpet and to Lindsey’s horror, when he stood up there was a nice, round poop stain on the carpet. His butt cheeks had opened up to form a brown, stinky Rorschach test of poop on the carpet. It was a perfect butterfly or 2 goblets depending how you looked at it.
After much encouragement and training, we are getting him to wipe himself more. Of course just last week, I caught him taking all his dirty toilet paper and throwing it in the trash can instead of the toilet. But the best story is just yesterday he told me his process for checking himself. He told me after he poops, he always wipes his butt on the toilet seat and if there is poop on the seat, he has not gotten all of it yet. This explains a lot of things. Mysterious stains on the seat, recent extra toilet cleanings, and extra baths after the poop had spread down his legs, front and back.
Another Drew story back in May. We were visiting my brother in Cincinnati for my nephews birthday party. Everyone was outside after lunch playing in the yard or hanging out on the deck. Drew went inside alone to poop. When he was finished, he poked his head out of the bathroom and saw the only other person in the house, my brother’s mother – in – law. Since she looked like a grandma, Drew said, “Excuse me. Do you wipe butts?” To which she replied, “I sure do,” and helped him out. It reminds me of the old Chinese proverb, “the family that wipes together, stays together.” Thanks Ramona.
Our 2 year old was the fastest to grasp potty training and is also in the parental butt wiping phase. Not because he wants to be but because we demand it. If he had his way, he would always be pants-less and sitting on my pillow. The thing with Nate is that he has this need to mark his territory. Lindsey has found him standing in the pantry peeing on the potatoes. But who can blame him, he loves potatoes and those were now his. He also loves to stand on the bottom step of our deck, drop trough and pee on all the outdoor toys especially the ride-on toys that other kids love to play with. But to him, “if my dog can mark his tree, I can mark my toys. That will show them not to mess with my stuff.” Thankfully I have not found pee-covered inside toys. But I am not too confident when I find a puddle in our house, its always the dog.
Nate also likes to play “poop fake”. He will call me when he is ready to be wiped and let me get 3 good cleaning strokes in, then declare “more poop!” He will then proceed to have another poop marring all clean-up that I just did. Much like the “pump fake” in football, I fall for it every time. I think the stinker holds back half of his dump when he knows I am the wiper. He loves to “poop fake” me out.
Now you know some new things they don’t teach you in “What to expect when you’re expecting.”
The Joyful and Tired Dad