5 Life Long Potty Training Lessons 

Potty training. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness…And in a blink of an eye, it’s was over and done and quickly forgotten.

It’s that time for my granddaughter. She’s 2 years old and is doing amazing. She’s ready and is just learning the steps. In the meantime, we keep her close to the toilet.

Which means for the next week, we stay close too. With rewards, accolades and appreciation. We celebrate every time the deed is done. As a mom, this was a pretty exhausting time for me. As a Nana, it’s about reminding the parents of her progress and rewarding her as she steps away from being a toddler.

  1. Know this will be over in the blink of an eye. Done. It’s true. Ask any mother of a teenager.

It’s been over 40 years since my boys had to learn to leave the diaper behind and become ‘big boys.’ The thing is, I can’t remember that time in my life too clearly. I can remember a basket of ‘rewards’ on top of the refrigerator for each successful trip to the toilet. The treats were rubber balls, match box cars, balloons, suckers, stickers and other five and dime type gifts. They were individually gift wrapped and offered as if it were Christmas morning.

  1. Give rewards for every successful potty in the potty chair.

If you watch to see how dogs are trained, you will notice that with every successful action, they are rewarded. If rewards are not a big thing in your child’s life – then they will work even better. Potty training is a big deal. Live it up and make it a party.

  1. This is the hardest one of all – EMBRACE this stage.

Remember when you longed for the days when your newborn would let you sleep through the night? Well, now your newborn is potty training. You will get through this. Use all the positive words you can and then …

Poof! Over! Done! On to new tasks, lessons and challenges.

  1. Potty training and life are a series of baby steps.

My world of being the mommy, making bread, canning tomatoes, freezing corn and stocking up on sweet pickles eventually came to an end. When I was in the mist of them, I never saw the big picture. The daily picture was about dozens of mundane things stung together that tied us together. Eventually, bedtime stories were replaced by soccer, school, Little League Baseball and their father became more prominent in their world as coach and sports companion. As they moved through grade school, I returned to college to earn my Bachelor degree. Baby steps helped us all move on from one stage to another.  Going back to complete my university degree coincided with kindergarten and T-Ball.

  1. See the BIG PICTURE and know this is a teeny dot on the lifeline.

Back then, my life was bursting at the seams with children, family, classes, work …and now I struggle to recall those days.  Now my son is the one offering praise and clapping with pride every time there is potty in the potty chair. And I am the ultimate cheerleader to all three of them.  I like being Nana.



2 thoughts on “5 Life Long Potty Training Lessons 

  1. It’s amazing how living life is so involved that we can barely catch our breath – let alone write down precious moments. When I was in the middle of it, I could not conceive of a time when I would have “downtime” again. And, now I have that and more. And, like you said, it’s even harder when you lose and son and long for those everyday moments again. Sending you warm thoughts.


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