Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Zachary will be three and a half in just a couple of weeks. It is high time for my stubborn sweetheart to be potty trained. Especially since I will have both a newborn & toddler in diapers just two months from now, and I'd rather not also have a preschooler in diapers along with the two of them.

As we were changing his diaper, I began to discuss the process of potty training with him. We've tried a couple of times, but each time it has gone miserably and we (okay, I) have given up and vowed to try again at a later date. He is excited about the prospect of picking out treats to enjoy when success does happen, but the rest of the process does not sound very exciting to him. :)

As I was finishing up changing him, I heard him muttering under his breath, "I am not a big boy. I just pretend to be a big boy. I'm really a little boy."

And I totally understood. Because I'm not really a big girl either. I'm just a little girl, intimidated by the thought of potty training, scared to death by the idea that in less than nine or ten weeks, I'll be responsible for three babies' welfare. But I have to pretend that I'm a big girl and bravely go along with this idea that I'm an adult now. Since I suppose I am. :)

And as I think about this 'pretending' and the feeling that I'm not ready for this, I'm not enough for the challenges that God has placed before me, the answer to Zachary's problem and my own come to me quietly. "My strength is made perfect in weakness. I will never leave you nor forsake you. When you are weak, then I am strong." (borrowed from 2 Cor. 12)

And that's why I can be the mommy to three darlings who are three and under (without losing my sanity). Because I'm not doing it on my own. When I'm 'done', 'at the end of my rope', 'out of patience', there is still more. There's God, and His immeasurable grace and love for me. And His all-powerful strength to pick me up and love my babies through tired, weak me.

And that's how we're going to do this potty training thing. This time we're not going it on our own. We're going to pray. A lot. We're going to keep our focus on what God wants for us, even in the midst of accidents and frustrations. And we're not going to give up...

At least for a day or two... :)


Liz said...

My stubborn Zachary was surprisingly responsive to sticker charts, based on the goals.

Every two weeks I set a new goal/objective. 1- understanding what the potty was for and setting scheduled potty breaks 2- peeing in the potty in the daytime 3- pooping in the potty in the daytime 4- dry overnight and public restrooms

It sounds like it's really stretched out over 8 weeks, which seems crazy, but the repetition and focusing on one thing at a time really helped us. He did regress and pooped in his underwear for 4 solid (haha!) weeks but something finally clicked and he is doing great now.

Good luck!

Savannah said...

wow i almost could have written this exact same post..my son is almost 3.5 years old, my daughter just turned two (her middle name is Grace, too!) and my youngest son is 2 months old today..so yea, 3 in diapers!...we've tried to potty train my son a few times before but it also went horribly..now my daughter suddenly has had some interest in the toilet and has used it a few times a day for the last week or so, and when she got her new sticker chart my son got a TINY bit interested..though by evening he was over it...thanks for the reminder to keep praying about this! I hope your little man gets the hang of it soon! keep us updated :)

Julie said...

You'll do great being a mommy to three. Your such a good mom :o) As far as potty training, we're working on that here too, yay (sarcasm). Boys arent fun to potty train so if it doesnt go smoothly dont beat yourself up to much, though you were smarter than I was about it for waiting till he was three (I started my boy a little before he was two). Natalie will be a breeze, girls are WAY easier to train!

Debbi said...

Great thoughts!
Potty training scares me to death & I know we are going to need to give it a try soon at our house too. I love the idea of praying about it & 2 Corinthians 12 is one of my favorite verses.
Prayed for you and Zachary today (your patience & Zachary's "want to spirit")!