Friday morning at 8:30 we began. Zack sat on the potty for 10 minutes, and got 5 minutes off. For about the first hour. He watched Diego videos to his heart's content. I mean, why guy doesn't want to have a TV in the bathroom?
Any time he was off the potty he was wearing a urine alarm. This is a contraption that sits in his underwear and sounds an alarm at the slightest hint of wetness. Supposedly to get him to learn to stop peeing when he begins, and run to the potty.
Then we progressed to 5 minutes on, 15 minutes off. No action. No success, but no accidents for the first couple of hours.
We fed him. We watered him.
We gave him breaks, where we fed and watered him some more.
Day One passed without much to report. Lots of accidents, one success (if you can call it that. Ever heard the one about how if you give a million monkeys typewriters, one of them is bound to type the Bible? No? Well, it's about odds. And odds are, anyone who spent as much time as Zack did on the potty that day would have at some point done something in it.)
Anyway, on Day Two, the urine alarm malfunctioned. It performed its duties but then the alarm would not shut off. Anytime we plugged it in, it was going off. So much for potty training technology. So we went without and just watched him closely, and as you can probably imagine, more accidents on Day Two.
On the log sheet I had to report each time he sat on the potty and circle whether it was "self-initiated", "accident", or "success". It was never self-initiated. I can understand why you'd count something that appears completely random as a success, but if by Day Three he's not self-initiating, or even acting like he grasps what we are trying to do here, it gets pretty discouraging.
It's just not working. He's not having the Light Bulb Moment I was hoping for, and I'm out of my mind with trying to keep him on a regular potty-time schedule. Yes, I do realize it's only been a few days. But if there's one thing I've learned in the past few years, it is that I have to do what keeps us all sane. Zack should not have to scream that much during the day, and I should not have to fight tears while I hold him down on the toilet, trying to avoid letting him sink his teeth into my arm yet again. And AJ and Aliza should not have to witness it. This isn't doing anyone any good.
Zack and his brother are at each other's throats constantly, and I mean constantly. The only reason I have time to do this now is because they are asleep. Every moment they aren't closely supervised, they are wrestling and tearing at each other. When I separate them they bite and pinch me. They both are so scratched, bit, and bruised they look like they fell off the roof into prickly bushes. Pictures do not do this activity justice, I'm going to have to get it on video.
I know I've mentioned the wrestling in posts before, but I didn't talk about how frustrating or exhausting it is. I didn't mention the injuries they give each other, or the way their repeated attacks on me grate away at any patience I might have started the day with.
I do hope that now that we've halted the potty routine, we might all be able to settle into a more enjoyable summer. I want to appreciate my kids and love the fun things they do and say. I want to post about the beauty and joy we are finding in each other this summer. I do hope the time of tears and bruises is ending.