Thursday, September 19, 2013

Thankful Thursday - Potty-Training Progress

We are not perfect parents.  At all.  We try desperately but our faults and impatience interact with the craziness that is related to losing first parents and foster care and just plain old life and it isn't always pretty. 

We have been trying to potty train Summer for 22 months.  TWENTY-TWO MONTHS.  Y'all that's almost two years and is a LONG time with what often feels like no progress.  She has accidents on a regular basis (like daily, sometimes several times a day) and doesn't seem to care.  She's about to turn 4 and is far-behind our foster child who just turned 3.  FAR behind.  She doesn't (usually) tell us she has to go and won't go on her own (usually) so we're at the stage (still) of reminding her to go every 15-20 minutes.  She still has accidents on that schedule.  Seriously.

We've tried it all.  We've tried every technique (in 2 years there has been time to give each a sufficient amount of time - that's 100 weeks!).  We've given up and let her decide when she is ready.  We have done everything except wait longer.  She does her own laundry and cleans up her own mess.  She simply doesn't care.  Potty-training resistance does not begin to describe it.  I'm at the point of thinking she either has something wrong with her medically (she was diagnosed with a urinary tract condition when she was an infant but never showed signs of it after she got proper care when she came to live with us) or maybe something like SPD.  SPD would make a lot of sense in many ways.  I'm going to bring it up at her annual physical and see what the doc suggests. 

(Thankfully, she did learn to poop in the potty and rarely has a BM accident so at least we're just dealing with that.)

I would probably be ok with waiting it out. Like with Logan and his sleep I'm absolutely sure that she will get it sooner or later or if not she can wear adult incontinence undergarments and I'd love her the same.  The problem I have is that everyone I leave her with (school, church, babysitters) are at past the point of being patient with it.  She's almost 4 and tall at that so no one believes she should be having accidents.  I get the "So what can I do to help her stay dry" everytime I drop her off somewhere.  It may sound helpful but really it sounds more like "You're a horrible parent why can't you get this potty training thing down" or "really, what is WRONG with YOUR daughter". 

I didn't mean to turn this into a rant.

I meant to write this post last Thursday.  You see, last week she had 3-4 days in a row with no accidents.  She even stayed dry during a movie at the theater when she was with my mom and even better in the middle of it she yelled "I HAVE TO POOP!" quite loudly.  I'll take what I can get if she'll just tell us she has to go, even in a movie theater at the top of her lungs. (Thankfully for my mom they were the only ones in the theater at the time).  She EVEN got a special, hand-made stamped picture note from her teacher that made a point about how well Summer had done in class that day.  She was both dry AND was nice to her friends.  Double bonus points.

Unfortunately I never got around to writing about it and how thankful I was to get that respite and the sweet sound of someone saying, for once, that she was GOOD.  When I arrived at her daycare she literally came with THREE BAGS full of soiled clothes from all of the accidents she had that day.  She also immediately threw the worst fit I'd ever seen her throw over not getting her cookie until she was in her car seat.  I think it had something to do with my mom leaving that day but still, it was aweful.  I quickly lost the motivation to be thankful for her wins earlier that week.

So today, friends, I'm pausing to celebrate the wins.  It is Thursday and my daughter has had 2 dry days this week (Monday & Friday).  She still came home from school in new outfits but she assured me (and it was obvious) that it was because she got a little carried away in centers and got wet (Monday) and spilled the sauce from snack on her dress (Wednesday).  I get frustrated when I see her in new clothes and my first reaction ends up being frustrated rather than happy to see her.  I know I own that, not her, but I know it's discouraging to both of us.  Yesterday I was initially frustrated but when taking her to the restroom I saw she was in the same underwear I'd sent her to school in and it encouraged me a little.  When she passionately told me about the accident with the sauce in her cute sentence structure and voice I was overcome with (positive) emotion.

So, all that to be said, today I'm thankful for the good days whether they're few and far between or frequent.  They help mie cope with the crap that is a fallen world  and the related effects on my family.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Has the doctor talked at all about some children having trouble with the valve between the bladder and the urethera? Creates a mechanical issue that is waaaay harder for a child to learn to control.
IF doctor thinks this might be involved then people can learn it is not you not teaching or her being 'naughty' but a disability that she will hopefully either outgrow or have operated on. Changes the perceptions and reduces stress.