Life with Twins

P. U. (potty update)

NOW: I haven’t updated on the potty situation in my house.  It is still ongoing.  It’s certainly a process.  It’s nice because I don’t feel the need to rush.  My deadline is pretty far in the future (DisneyWorld: July 2012) so I’m confident they will be potty trained by then.  And if not, oh well, luggage full of diapers here we come!

They have their days.  And so do we; we being the caregivers.

In September, when I went back to work after summer break, my dad decided he’d like to switch things up and come to my house to watch the kids during the day.  I had previously been dropping the kids at his house.  But, rightly so, he didn’t really want puddles of pee all over his carpet.

Then, about halfway through September, he told me he was quitting.  No more potty stuff.  They’re too young he said to me.  I told him, quite frankly, it’s a little late for that. 

Point 1: They know what to do.  They can get to the potty. 

Point 2: They have no problem doing their business on the potty. 

Point 3: They love their underwear.

Point 4: They’re smart enough to figure out that diapers are easier.  So putting them back in diapers is just going to make it that much harder in 2 months when we try to reteach them. 

Point 5: In 2 months there will not miraculously be no more accidents.

Point 6: In 2 more months, he’ll be teaching them, not me.

So, he agreed to keep trying.  He tried to quit again mid-October.  I reviewed points 1-6. 

I know it’s frustrating.  I am also frustrated at times, and I’m with them less.  All of the sudden they’ll be standing there, in the middle of the living room, peeing.  And telling you they’re peeing.  Then, while you’re helping one in the bathroom, the other is playing in the pee that you haven’t had time to clean up yet.  It’s a mess and a half.  Plus, we really are trying to keep them off of the furniture, but of course that’s the first place they want to go when they think you aren’t watching.

So we started reminding them more often.  It’s even more frustrating when you ask them if they have to go potty, they say no, and five seconds later there’s a stream of urine heading for the carpet. 

Then we started making sure they go every hour or so.  Like, you can’t play anymore until you at least TRY to go potty.  This sometimes involved bribery, pulling them or carrying them to the bathroom, letting them bring books or stuffed animals, or watching a grown-up go to the potty at the same time. 

Tiring, to say the least.

But it’s getting better.  The worst right now is the constant reminding and asking and then still making sure they physically get to the potty instead of just pretending they’re going to go and then running down the hall past the bathroom, laughing hysterically.  And if you’re not constantly reminding them, they forget and just pee on the rug.  I just don’t understand why they get the whole concept but just won’t do it on their own.  Even if they have an accident, I ask them where the pee pee should go and they tell me in the potty.  I even ask them if the spot where the accident is looks like the potty and they laugh and say no, the potty is in the bathroom.  And I say, then why didn’t you run to the potty?

I don’t get it.  They get the whole idea.  They like the idea.  They like wearing underwear.  They’re getting better at pulling down and putting on their underwear.  I don’t get why they need SO MUCH prompting to get to the potty.  I understand that even older children (or sometimes adults) need reminders to go, especially if they are in the middle of doing something fun.  But this is like every time. 

This week, Ariel has actually just started stopping what she’s doing, and running to the potty.  Hallejujah!  She’ll be playing, and all of the sudden either tell you “Go Away” because she wants to go to the potty herself, or “Come Too!” because she wants you to come watch/help.  Or, she’ll be mysteriously missing from the room and you hear the faint sounds of the potty music coming from the bathroom!

Very exciting stuff.  Will is better when she’s around.  Because she’ll get all kinds of attention for running to the potty by herself and then he wants to do it.  That’s fine with me!  However, if Ariel sleeps late or is in another room, or has “held it” longer than he can……accident. 

But, it’s a process.  I think they’re doing very well, especially for their age.  I certainly didn’t expect miracles this past summer.  (It would have been nice…..but unrealistic).  I know a great number of people don’t start potty-training until 2 1/2 or 3……and even then it can take 2 days, 2 weeks, or 6 months, or more.  So, technically it’s been about 5 months, and over the summer they were outside in bathing suits a lot where they didn’t have to worry so much about running to the potty.  Or, we’d be on an outing (to the zoo, a friend’s house, papa’s house) and I’d put them in diapers.  So those first 2 months weren’t exactly consistent.

We’ve even been taking them on short trips in underwear.  Every Saturday, after swim class, we go to Wegman’s for groceries.  At first Ariel refused to sit on the “big potty” even with the little ring attached, so she had to wear diapers.  And Will would insist on going to the big potty 3-4 times while we were there, but that’s better than having accidents in the shopping cart.  Then, Ariel suddenly decided it was safe on the big potty, so now she’s been going shopping in undies too.

Saturday night we went to dinner and had them in their underwear!  This was the first time Ariel actually announced her need to go to the potty and was immediately rushed there and rewarded!  No accidents at Applebee’s!

It is quite a milestone.  And I can’t wait until it’s over.

This is now.

THEN:  My heart broke, and yet was filled with so much love and hope.

It was breaking because I couldn’t hold, or even touch, my little miracles.  A kiss on the forehead and Ariel was whisked away.  I didn’t even get that with Will.  Then they were gone.  It was as if they never were there.  I got to see them each for less than a minute.

Tears were streaming down my cheeks in floods.  I was such a blur of emotion and the drugs certainly were not helping.  I felt weak and vulnerable and sad and happy and sorry for myself and thrilled that my babies were pretty healthy considering the circumstances.

As they sewed me up and helped me out I just kept inquiring about my babies.  I wanted details about their health.  The nurses assured me they were going to be fine.  But it wasn’t enough.  I just wanted to see them again.

I had heard and seen so many instances where, even with a C-Section, the baby was placed in the mother’s arms when it was born.  I wasn’t expecting that with my current situation, but I couldn’t help but feel that this was so unfair.  I felt so sorry for myself, and my longing to see them and touch them and hold them was so strong, clouding my feelings of relief and anxiety.

I felt robbed.  I had waited for them for so long and I just wanted them.  They were mine.  And they were gone. 

The dramatic (and drug-filled) part of me thought about how they were ripped from my abdomen and rushed away from me without time to even tell them how much I loved them and wanted them. 

And I was so angry.  My weak stupid body.  The twins would be cleaned up, moved to the NICU and limited people could visit them in about an hour.  But not me.  I had to rest.  I couldn’t be moved.  My own body was failing me again because I had to waste time recovering from surgery.  I wouldn’t be able to go down to see them for at least 24 hours.

But guess who could go see them?  That very night.  Who could go see MY babies?  Everyone else.  They hadn’t gone through over 2 years of fertility treatments, including needles they were terrified of and IUI’s that were extremely uncomfortable.  They hadn’t carried twins in their bodies for 7 months.  They hadn’t had to be on bedrest.  They hadn’t had to be pushed around in a wheelchair.  They hadn’t been stuck in the hospital for the last 4 days and then finally had to be put through emergency surgery 9 weeks before they were due.  But they got to go see MY babies.  And I couldn’t.

The next morning.  Guess who got to see my babies?  Not me.  My family, my extended family, a few friends.  All before me.  That afternoon?  Not me.  Everyone was coming up to see me after going to see MY babies and telling me how beautiful they were and how well they were doing and how soft their skin was and how they opened their eyes and how Ariel was already responding to the sound of Tim’s voice and saying “oh, just wait til you see them, you will be so happy.” 

 I had met my own children for less than a minute.  All these other people were getting to see them for hours at a time and listening to them and touching them and learning about them from the nurses that were taking care of them.  I had gotten to see them for less than a minute.  So, after waiting to conceieve them, waiting for them to be born, and waiting to find out how healthy they would be upon being born 9 weeks early…..I was waiting again. 

Tim was obviously splitting his time between me and our children.  He would come up to me at regular intervals to tell me how they were doing and what machines they were on, and what the nurses and doctors said.  Then someone else would show up to visit and back down he would go. 

Upon proof-reading this post, I just want to clarify that it shouldn’t be read as if I sound like a whiny b**ch.  🙂  Thanks.

That was then.

I know I’m getting out of sequence because I skipped right to the day after they were born.  I am still just filled with so much emotion when I remember the pain I felt knowing that I couldn’t go see them.  I’ll skip back a little next time I post.

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Comments on: "P. U. (potty update)" (2)

  1. I’m trying to start up potty training with my 2 1/2 year old but it’s my hubby that finds it easier to keep her in diapers. I’ve heard potty training is one of the hardest things to do (until they become teenagers, lol) so I think you rock.

    My daughter has a potty chair and one of those potty rings. For the most part she’ll just think it’s fun to put the ring on the toilet, get on it, then jump off. Wash and repeat. I think if I’m going to get grey hair, now will be the time. 😉

    I want to hug you when reading about THEN. While our kids had different reasons for being in the NICU, I really feel one thing is certain. Your heart is torn to pieces because while they’re being cared for, you’re not the one doing it and it killed me that I couldn’t bring my little girl home with me. xx

    P.S. This is the first time in awhile that I’ve been able to leave a comment because for some reason my laptop freezes up on your site. I know it’s on my end and not yours. 🙂 And you in no way sound like a whiny b**ch.

    • Oh I’ve discovered that diapers are definitely easier. Especially now that they can “hold it” a little better and I don’t have to change them every 2 hours! But I don’t want them to figure that out! LOL. Potty training is ridiculous. For a while it was taking my whole day (that’s when we did naked babies for a while because I just couldn’t deal with the amount of time it took to get pants and underwear off and on). My hair is still light enough that only I can see the grey….if I look really really hard in the mirror. But I know it’s there.

      That’s so true about the NICU – I couldn’t have asked for better care….unless it had been myself being able to care for them. 🙂

      And thanks! I’m glad I’m not whiny. Or bitchy. Most of the time. Or at least in this certain specific instance.

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