My husband let me sleep in today. A lot. I stayed in bed till after 11am. He is a treasure. Last night I complained that I had lost my appetite completely. Hungry, but there is nothing at all that appeals to me to eat. It had been slowly creeping on since I started toilet training - I cannot eat when unhappy or stressed - and is a strong sign of depression for me. That, and not wanting to get out of bed. So he kindly let me sleep late.
While I was asleep, Erik had poo'd in his night time nappy, and poo'd on the living room floor. Hubby had put him on the toilet straight after, but I don't know the details of whether or not he showed Erik how poo goes in the toilet, etc. I found the change mat out on the bed too, so I know that daddy cleaned him up the old-fashioned way. Oh well. I guess he didn't know to clean him up at the toilet. Sitting him on the toilet was a good move though, and I was told he didn't poo very much.
Hubby has taken all the girls to church today, and I am at home with Erik. It is the second week we miss church because of toilet training. I hate it, but I can't put a pull-up on him just for church, and I can't send him in with the high risk that he will wee or poo out in kids church or even with me. So we have had to stay home. School starts again tomorrow, and I am pretty sure I'll have to send him in with a pull-up on. But I count that as our efforts for these holidays finished.
On the other hand, I'll send in a note for the teachers asking whether it was worth continuing the no-pants method for the three or so hours after school that he is awake. I dearly hope they say no. How cowardly is that. It's only three hours! But here is my conundrum: Is it better to cease this method entirely and keep the toilet training efforts intensive and all out? Or is it better to carry on, even in a small half-here-half-there capacity, until we achieve success? I am hoping they can advise me on this, and whatever they suggest, I will go ahead with. Even though I want to run a mile (or 100) from anything resembling toilet training once tomorrow comes.
About 3pm, I notice the characteristic dance that he does when he needs to wee. I take him to the toilet and wait it out. We sing, we count, we play. I let him stand and walk around rather than sit on the toilet. It's a wee, and he will need to learn to wee standing up eventually. He is so strong and stubbourn, I honestly don't know how he manages to hold on for so long! But eventually, in a moment of distraction, he starts. He always stares down at himself in shock and disappointment when he starts a wee without his nappy. But I gently say "Good boy!" and quickly place the bucket under the stream. He chuckles again. So cute. When he is done, I immediately pour it into the toilet while he looks on. "Wee goes in the toilet bubba. Good job! Now we flush. Ready, set, go!" *flush*. I lead him out to the kitchen where he gets a chocolate freckle. He is very happy to receive it. Then I go back to clean up the bits that got on the floor. A small success!
There is nothing more for the next few hours. But then at about 6pm, I see that same dance. We are almost finished dinner, but I am still eating mine. Hubby offers to take him to the toilet, and I gratefully (but with some trepidation) accept. It usually ends in screams when daddy does this duty. Sure enough, several minutes later, I hear the telltale screams of a meltdown coming from the toilet. I leave them be, but after a while it becomes too much. Erik is upset, and we will achieve nothing this way.
I go to the toilet to check on hubby - I know what it's like trying to handle a screaming boy, so I want him to know that I am here if he needs anything. I notice that he has Erik sitting on the toilet. I tell hubby that I don't usually get him to sit for a wee, only if there is poo happening. Hubby asks how can I tell. Hard to explain with a screaming boy in the background. Long story short, we swap places. Erik is not happy to still be made to stay in the toilet, but I am quickly able to distract and settle him with our usual songs and games.
In a short time, he begins to wee. He really was busting. This time, he is standing close to the toilet, so instead of using the bucket, I gently turn him so that the stream flows into the toilet. Mostly. Some lands on the seat, and some dribbles in front. But you get the idea LOL. Another little chuckle. I love those chuckles. As soon as he is done, he tries to back away. I spontaneously decide to attempt one step further, and try to show him how to 'flick' it clean. He doesn't want to know LOL. Maybe that's too much at this early stage. Never mind. I gently but joyfully praise him for weeing in the toilet. Then lead him by the hand to get him another freckle. Oops! Forgot to flush! Never mind. That's not as important as actually weeing IN the toilet!
Oh. My. Gosh. Did that just happen? I mean... it's not as if he actually told me he needs to go, and then purposely wee'd in the toilet, but still! He wee'd IN THE TOILET!
Back to dinner. A short while later, I notice he needs to poo. Back to the toilet, and this time, I get him to sit. Then it occurs to me that it might actually be bed time, and he has school tomorrow. I call out the door to ask hubby the time. Yep. 7:39pm. Past his bed time. I don't bother with waiting out the poo - based on our past success rate with this particular venture, I don't think it's worth keeping him up another hour for what will likely be another fail. So I take him into the bathroom, and shower him, pj's on and put both him and the Baby Miss to bed.
I gently try to tell him that there will be school in the morning. He regards me with those precious chocolaty eyes. I don't know how much he understands most times, but this time, I think he understands me. I guess tomorrow will tell. But either way, I am pretty sure he will be over the moon to be going to school. And considering he has been basically housebound for the last two weeks, bored witless and subjected to a massive overhaul in his life's patterns, I can't say I blame him.
As for me....
I am almost sick with relief that these two weeks are over. And yet, at the same time, I feel as though they have gone so fast. With the small wee win we had tonight, could there be an imminent success if we continued?
I don't know. But I do know, I can't send him on the bus with no safety-guard (ie. pull-up). He has not had a pull-up on for two whole weeks. Only his night time nappy. I do hope the act of putting one on doesn't undo everything that has happened over the holidays. On the other hand, it's not like we've made massive leaps in progress that there would be anything major to undo. Ugh. The whole issue does my head in.
I hope the depression that has sunk in over this time doesn't hang around. I hope it never comes back. But somehow, I don't think I have seen the last of it. It's just something that seems to come with this territory. I will have to learn to be stronger.
Tomorrow: disinfect the couches, floors, whole house LOL. The rug may have to wait until later in the week when we get a warm dry day. I want to take that one outside and give it a good wash down and leave it to dry in the sun. But although the house itself might be able to return to normal fairly quickly, I think I might need a bit of time before the stress of the last two weeks washes away from my soul. I will have to plan something pleasant for myself. Which is a lot harder than it sounds.
Deep breath, and move on.
....Well done beautiful boy. You wee'd in the toilet! Oh, I am holding on to that tiny victory.