“I did a poo tomorrow!” she screams at me. In the mind of 3 year old Mini Me, this makes perfect sense and should be sufficient in getting mummy to leave her alone and stop asking her to “pleeeeeeeeeeeease do a poo in the toilet”.
We’re potty training. Actually, no. She’s been potty trained since Christmas. And I’m a very proud Mum as it really only took a fortnight and 3 wee accidents to get to no nappies/no pull-ups territory. It’s wonderful. We can leave the house without a suitcase of paraphernalia. A spare pair of Peppa Pig pants and a pair of leggings are now popped into my handbag, and off we go!
While I am of course, enjoying the utter joy of carrying my grown up handbags again, (in place of her baby bag/Minnie Mouse backpacks which have served as Mummy’s handbag for the past 3 years), I’m still terrified.
What if she forgets to tell me she needs to pee? The ball-pool is after all, just too much fun to think of such banal bodily functions
What if she announces that she has to pee while we’re in that bloody retail park in town that doesn’t have a public toilet?
What if she pees herself when she’s away from me, and someone scolds her for not telling them she needed to go?
What if she poops?
Because, my little darling, while “potty trained” for the number 1s, is refusing, point blank, to poo in the toilet. She promises me every day that she’ll “do my poooooos in da toiiiiilet cos I’ms a big gurl” She proudly announces to Daddy at bedtime that she “dood a poo in the toilet yesterday.” (Her lack of time awareness is quite cute and utterly comical really!)
The reality is that she holds it in for days on end, resulting in a sore tummy, spotty blemishes on her porcelain skin and huge tennis-ball-esque poops protruding from her little toochie as she comes out from her playhouse or from behind the sofa.
She announces innocently that she needs the toilet, then, when she hears the plop of said tennis-ball hitting the water, she beams her sparkly smile, gasps and announces “I dooood it! I pooed in the toiiiiilet!!” (usually followed by “I need a Kinder egg” – thanks Granny!)
How do I tell her proud little self that actually, no. You did a poop that an adult would struggle to produce, in your pants, and the toilet/my hands/your little legs are now covered in it. In fact, sometimes, the offending poop looks ironically like a bloody kinder egg! (or in her own words…”It’s only Playdough Granny!”)
I’m living in a playdough nightmare.
I am quite literally. in. the. shit. And I don’t have a clue what to do.
Everyone is offering advice. I am taking it all gratefully and have tried everything from blowing bubbles while on the toilet, having whistling competitions to encourage the muscles to move, scolding, blackmailing and crying. (me, not her!)
I explain to her patiently that Mummy put the poopoo into the toilet, after she did it in her pants, and that she’s a big girl and should tell Mammy next time. I’ve turned the poos into little crocodiles who want to go for a swim in the toilet with the peepees. I’ve tried the “You can show Baby Cousin how to do poops in the toilet“… I’ve tried everything.
So, tell me. What have I not done? And more importantly, what can I do? Because I know that “it’s just a phase”, “that they all go through it,” and “that she’ll be grand”, but as Mummy, I need to know how to avoid scarring her for life and leaving her afraid of the toilet! And yes, I know I’ll look back on this and laugh. Yes, I’ll be well prepared for next time and it’ll be a breeeeeeze.
Yes, maybe she’ll just decide suddenly that the fear she has is gone. Maybe, I’ll have another 3 months of poops in the pants. Maybe one of my aunties or friends will untap the secret for me. Maybe I’ll find something that works for us. Or maybe she’s actually a psychic child and she will “did a poo tomorrow!”
Whatever. While we wait, I am indeed “Still-no-poopoo-Mum.