There are a lot of aspects of parenting that get a lot of negative attention. Getting your child to sleep through the night. Teething. The terrible twos. Weaning. Keeping those #@$@%! kids in bed. Being borderline OCD, I was very apprehensive about having a child and was a pretty big stress case for the first few years of Kathleen's life.
Now that I'm on number four, however, I've seen a lot of early-childhood years and have come to the conclusion that most of the scary parts of early-childhood parenting aren't that bad and can be gotten through without that much trouble.
Except for toilet training.
Toilet training deserves all of its bad rap and then some. I hate toilet training.
I have a friend who waits until their children beg her to train them before she even considers putting pull-ups on them. I guess I don't hate it as much as her because in the end I dislike washing two boys' worth of cloth diapers less than I like toilet training.
After an unsuccessful attempt several months ago, this week I finally girded up my loins, filled up my mop bucket, readied my chocolate supply, and put Edwin in underwear. After the first two days of puddles everywhere (thank heaven I just ordered a carpet cleaner), the excitement calmed down and Edwin spent at least twenty-five percent of his waking time on his little red potty reading books, playing with cars, eating sandwiches, and scooting around the floor.
And I have to confess, it wasn't so bad this time around. But I still hate toilet training.
(You can thank me if you like for no gratuitous underwear- and potty-pictures)