Mon Cœur is potty training right now. As in, for the past six months or so, she has not wanted to go poo in her diaper. Which rocks, since we decided to do cloth, and anyone who uses cloth diapers understands the fun involved in cleaning them.
For a while she was wanting to go to the bathroom exclusively, however with all of the recent change due to Millie’s passing, various visitors at the house and some travel, we lost momentum. I was no longer asking her every hour if she wanted to go to the bathroom, and she slipped into contentment with wet diapers.
Fast-forward a few months and our darling daughter is 27 months, still using diapers, still taking a bottle of milk at night, and still using a “binks/tatote” (pacifier). I decided that while we were still okay with these things, we should probably try to start weaning her off of them. One at a time. The first two we have been tackling are potty training and the bottle. More on the bottle later.
I am not big on rewards, I would rather Mon Cœur be intrinsically motivated and do something simply for the satisfaction of having completed it and know that she has done a great job. Recently, though, Chou chou and I have discovered an opportunity and exploited it.
About three weeks ago, Mon Cœur said, “Feed piggy!” (or was it “Feed piggy?”?) She was referring to her piggy bank – she wanted to put coins in the piggy bank. “A-ha!” I thought. I shared this idea with Chou chou and we began incentivizing just sitting on the toilet and trying. Now we get up every morning and I ask her to try. After every bathroom trip, we go to the coin jar and count out coins – one for trying, one for going, one for dry diapers. I try to remember to ask her at certain intervals if she needs to go (I sometimes even set a timer), and we try at obvious times, like before and after nap, before we leave the house, before bed.
Recently, we went on a trip out of town and I debated taking the piggy and coins. I wanted to keep the momentum going, but without the extra weight in our suitcase. What we decided to do instead was perfect for us. We took a small notebook and Chou chou asked her to draw a piggy.
She drew a piggy and I labelled it. Then we explained that each time she used the bathroom, she would get a tally mark. We left the book and a pen in the bathroom. She did just as well with that as she does at home with the piggy and our suitcase was a little lighter!