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Posts Tagged ‘potty training’

I usually get home from work at around six o’clock. And at our house, that can only mean one thing.

There’s a potty goin’ on.

For by that time, our triplets have finished their dinner and are required to take a turn on the potty before their bath. “You have a new and important role,” Lovie casually informed me the other night. “I’ve officially appointed you our Bathroom Attendant.”

Sounds good to me. I’ve been dealing with shit at work all day long. I guess it only makes sense that I should do the same at home.

Our potty-training initiatives have actually gone pretty well. So well that our toddlers wear their big boy and big girl pants every waking moment, only donning the diapers whenever it’s time for nite-nite. To get them to this point, we had to employ a reward system. They get one M&M whenever they go pee pee, and if they “make it happen,” they receive a cookie.

Recently, however, they discovered a pee-pee loophole. Since said discovery, whenever even a drop of urine hits their potty, they feel entitled to some candy. We reluctantly rewarded them with an M&M the first few times until we finally realized that they were doing nothing more than intentionally time-releasing microscopic amounts of pee every five minutes just so they could quadruple their chocolate intake. Our trio, it seemed, were turning into little sugar junkies. And speaking of junkies, if the trend continued, we feared their candy-coated teeth would eventually look like they belonged to two-year-old meth addicts.

Even worse than the candy pandering were the fights that ensued over who got the honor of flushing. Initially, the two non-flushers were content with the default honor of being an integral part of the pee-pee/poo-poo send-off committee. While the flusher flushed, they would energetically bid their bodily waste a cheery farewell.

“Bye bye, pee pee! Bye bye, poo poo!”

But when the fighting for the handle began, we decided to let each of them flush their own. Until we started adding up our water bill, that is, which prompted us to once again combine all of their efforts into the big potty and return to the single-flush policy. The resulting mad dashes to the magic handle resembled three hardcore gambling addicts wrestling for the lever of the lone, unoccupied slot machine at the Bellagio.

Funny. I thought their game was craps.

Whenever they jockey for pole position next to the handle, one of them often brushes against the open seat, inadvertently sending it hurtling downward toward the porcelain with alarming velocity, like a guillotine screeching down from above. We feared it was only a matter of time before one of the boys got beheaded. (sorry)

When they weren’t fighting over flushing, they were busy opening and shutting the bathroom door. It was actually quite cute. For the first four thousand times. But not only did the slamming grow old, so, too, did the shouting matches that went down by the bathroom door.

Fighting over flushing? Shouting over slamming? Such affairs were so foreign to us, that we decided it was time to implement a concept of foreign affairs. That’s right. We busted out our own Open Door Policy. All doors remain open. Period. It doesn’t matter who’s “making it happen.” And Lovie has designated me to enforce this policy and restore order to their bathroom endeavors. I am now the keeper of the door, the judge of which efforts warrant rewards, as well as the designated flusher.

So every day when I return from work, I take my seat on top of the closed toilet lid while my little guys hunker down on the three plastic potties immediately in front of me. They contort their tiny bodies while pushing for all they’re worth til their innocent faces turn red and the veins in their neck stand at attention, all in the name of frosted animal cookies.

Yep. That qualifies. Would you like a red or green M&M?

I offer words of encouragement during their valiant efforts and they respond with quizzical expressions, much like the ones I used to give those clowns who offered me a stick of gum or imitation Drakkar cologne as I washed my hands in the bathroom of a downtown Seattle hot spot.

I’m re-learning something I first learned when I was a twenty-something club-hopper. Being a Bathroom Attendant is a thankless job.

Only now that I’m forty, I’m wise enough to know that I’m the luckiest man in the world to have it. In fact, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

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