What day is it? How long does this question phase last? Will I survive it?

BB is 3-years-old! We have reached the land of a million questions.

We have also reached vacation land, which may or may not be why I’ve been slacking on blogging. I’ve thought about it almost every day, but then I went to the beach.

BB asks,

“First you’re a baby, then a kid and then an adult?”

“That’s right.”

“What’s after adult?”

“That’s it.”

“That’s it?”

“You get older, but you’re still an adult.”

A few days later BB starts crying,

“I don’t want to be an adult!!!”

“Why?”

“I don’t want to take showers.”

Don’t worry. No showers.

BB points at our house,

“What’s that?”

“What do you think?” I know she knows the answer, so why does she still ask?

“It’s the chimney!”

“That’s right.”

“Is that where Santa comes down?”

“So they say.” It’s July and I’m answering Santa questions.

“Why doesn’t he come in the door?”

“I don’t know. Maybe the chimney is faster? If you don’t have a chimney I bet he comes in the door.”

Let me supersede some of this if possible.

The next day Captain, BB and I are in the car headed to the Cape. BB asks,

“Mom, where are we going?”

My knee jerk reaction is to answer when I hear my call sign, but I remember I’m on vacation. I ask Captain,

“Are her questions driving you crazy?”

“Not really.”

Oh right. Because I’m the one who’s been answering all of them. BB tries again,

“Mom? Where are we going?”

“I’m going to let Dad field this one.”

He calls out,

“What’s the question?”

She goes back to “reading” her book.

Toy Story 4 is playing at the drive-in movie theater at the Cape. Considering Woody was one of BB’s top birthday present requests, along with “armresters” for her kitchen chair, the movie sounds like a good idea.

It’s a 40 minute drive. We pull out of the driveway and slow down at a crosswalk,

“Are we there?”

“No, we’re going to be in the car for a long time.”

“Where are we going?”

“Where do you think?”

“To see the Buzz movie with Woody.”

“That’s right.”

“Where’s the movie theater?”

Shoot me now.

We get there.

“Where’s the movie theater?”

“This is it.”

“This is it?”

“It’s a drive-in movie theater.”

“Where’s the movie theater.”

“This is it, we watch the movie from the car.”

“Where’s the movie theater?”

She’s NEVER even been to a real movie theater, WHAT is she talking about?

“Is the sun setting?”

“Yes.”

“Why?”

“Because the earth is rotating.”

“Is it getting dark?”

“Yes.”

“Where’s Woody?”

Is there another car I can watch the movie from?

And sometimes I’d like to turn things around and get some of my questions answered. Like why after months of successfully peeing in the potty unprompted with no accidents (as I write this), does BB still insist on a pull-up for pooping?

BB comes to me holding her butt,

“I need a pull-up.”

“Do you want to try pooping in the potty?”

“NOOO! I said no.”

“Let’s try.”

“I’ll poop in the potty when I’m an adult.”

She heard that kids can drown in a few inches of water

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Potty training continues

I could spare you more potty talk, but since I brought it up you know I’m not going to.

We’ve made progress. BB is pooping in the bathroom. She requests a diaper, I’m happy to oblige and then she stays in the bathroom until she’s done.

I read that this way she’ll start to associate the bathroom as the place to poop as opposed to standing in her bedroom window. Even though it has a lovely view.

This whole thing makes my cortisol levels spike like nothing else. We were running errands the other afternoon, so that by the time we got to Target I was positive we needed the potty. BB agreed to try, but nothing. I plopped her in the cart and we went on our way. Five minutes later,

“I need to go potty!”

I push the cart in panic mode from one side of the store to the other. I understand that the worst thing that could happen is we need to change clothes and we leave a Target shopping cart covered in pee, but I’d rather not. We make it to the bathroom. Nothing. BB declares,

“I tried, but my butt is all dried up.”

Ok. I resume shopping. I glance at BB. She’s holding her crotch. C’MON!

“Do you need to go potty?”

“No.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes.”

“Why are you holding your crotch?”

She has no answer for me, but she continues to hold it for the rest of the 20 minute shopping trip. This is enough to raise my stress levels, but not quite enough to make me abandon Target before I’m ready.

We check out and head for the bathroom. At this point I have to go and have given up on BB, assuming an accident is imminent. She declares,

“I’ll try. If it comes out, it comes out.”

It comes out.

This is a very unpredictable process. At home I go to the bathroom. I reach for toilet paper and get a piece that’s already been ripped off. It’s mysteriously wet.

“BB where do we put toilet paper after we wipe?”

“In the potty.”

“That’s right!

“But last time I put it back on the roll.”

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Someone may need this shirt.

 

Have potty, will travel

And just like that BB is potty training.

I potty trained when I was 2.5 and I’m sure Captain was later than that, so this is not something that was on my radar as being imminent. I knew and hoped it would happen one day. I figured I’d get some books, buy all the gear and be ready. I was not ready.

A week ago, BB was “helping” me fold laundry, which is really an exercise in folding and putting away as fast as I can before BB can undo what I’ve already done. BB has always liked playing with clothes and underpants are no different. She tosses them in the air,

“Daddy’s underwear, mommy’s underwear… I need my panties.”

“Uh huh.”

“I need my panties.”

“Ok.” I feel sure she wants panties to play with just like she’s playing with mine and Captain’s. She raises her voice at me,

“I NEED MY PANTIES.”

“You want your own panties?”

“Yeah.”

“We’ll get them later.” All I’m thinking is: I need to make dinner, can I avert a tantrum?

A half- hour later, Captain gets home and I’m starting to cook. BB tries again,

“I need my panties.”

“Ok.”

“I NEED MY PANTIES.”

“Ok we’ll go to the store tomorrow and get some.” I don’t know why she needs panties so desperately, but I would really like to avoid a tantrum.

“I NEED MY PANTIES I NEED MY PANTIES I NEED MY PANTIES!!!” She’s starting to scream cry. I ask her,

“If you get panties, what are you going to do?”

“Go potty.”

What?! OK! I had no idea she understood what panties are for. I’ve never dropped everything and left for Target so fast.

BB insists on a shopping cart. I put her in and we find the underwear aisle. She grabs Mickey Mouse “boy underwear” and Sesame Street “girl underwear.” I ask her,

“Would you like any other ones?”

She’s already half way back to the register. She calls back to me over her shoulder,

“This is good.”

I chase after her, leaving the empty shopping cart behind. She reminds me,

“Shopping cart?”

“Do you want to get in it?”

She clutches the 2 packs of underwear,

“BB walk.”

“Then we can leave the shopping cart there.”

“SHOPPING CART!”

Or I can push it and try to wrangle a toddler marching through Target. I can do that.

We get home. BB wanted Mickey boy underwear so I got it. I assumed it was like how a store will label a blue truck a “boy” truck and a pink truck a “girl” truck, but aside from color they’re the same. So boy underwear, girl underwear what’s the difference?

I opened the packages. Oh right. There is a difference. I didn’t want to add explaining penises to this day, but BB does not know or care that her underwear can open in the front.

Only half believing that there is any chance of success, I put her in her new panties. She grabs her little potty, drags it from the bathroom, into the kitchen, over and through the open baby gate and sets it up next to Captain who’s working on his computer. She sits down and pees, straight through her new underwear.

Well that’s something. It’s been a week now. Some days we’ve had 100% success and other days are more like 30%.

First full day of no diapers, BB comes dashing into the kitchen screaming,

“POTTY!!!”

I don’t know what’s grosser: poop in the living room or the dog eating it.

Three days into it, I want to put a diaper on her to go to the grocery store. I’m not trying to wash the whole car seat right now. BB tells me,

“No diaper, big girl panties.”

Ok. The car seat could use a wash.

I go into a frenzy of potty paraphernalia shopping. Toddler seats for the full-size toilets came a few days ago. BB really likes those the best. Me too. Emptying little buckets of poop and pee does not feel like a big step up from changing diapers.

We’re far far away from this being a done deal. Sometimes BB is self-initiating and going potty by herself, but she still isn’t pulling down her underwear. She yells from the bathroom,

“Mommy, I went potty!”

I cheer and jump and clap. Then I remind her that she can pull her panties down next time,

“Let’s put on new underwear, these ones are wet with pee.”

“No mommy, just sweaty.”

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When it’s 95° and you’re potty training and you’re really into “The Three Little Kittens Who Lost Their Mittens.”

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And when you gotta go potty, but you also really need to trim your toe nails