Let me first acknowledge that my wife is the one toilet training Missy. I say that because it is all too easy for us blokes to come home one day, have a proud child, sans nappy, greet you – and think to yourself, “well that seemed painless”. It’s not an easy job, and all sorts of previously stress free events take on a whole new level of pain.
Initially, the process could be called “Floor Pee” training, as that’s where 99% of nappy-free urinating ends up. This is a close cousin of “Unaware Pee”. Missy didn’t seem to be even conscious she was doing it, but as any man will tell you, after 10 beers and 3 pies at the footy, sometimes the link between brain and bladder gets broken.
So during this trying time, mum, and sometimes dad, get quite apt at making sure the kitchen paper is always on hand. It seems to me that it shouldn’t be made into too big a deal, as toddlers don’t need a complex at this stage of their life. There is plenty of time for that later.
Then we moved to a stage where Missy doesn’t want a nappy, despite a real and present danger of things going horribly wrong. Say, on the bus, or on a plane, or anywhere where there is not a toilet within 5 feet. This stage, “I need to go NOW!” is problematic. Very few cities lavatory facilities are designed to have a toilet no more than 5 feet away from any given point. So training pants and underwear become the bulk of handbag contents, as does a plastic bag to hold urine soaked “accidents”.
“Regression stage”, creeps up on you like the proverbial thief in the night. “At last”, we triumphantly thought. Missy seemed to get it. She was proud of her new status of underwear wearing princess, and we were equally proud of our bladder-holding baby. Then something happens. Be it a plane ride, where a nappy is just a sensible thing to do, or just one of those unexplainable things, and “floor pee” time rears it’s ugly head yet again.
To be fair, being encouraged to go to the loo for pee time then having to wear a nappy for a plane trip – it must be a bit confusing. Still like most things with children, it’s a stage, and it will pass.
So despite puddles of pee and soaked undergarments by the bushel, Missy is sort of toilet trained, well, mostly. We do tread warily into this new stage of our lives. A stage that means trips are planned, not only with education or fun in mind, but also with access to facilities.
My only concern, in this new era, is how to explain the pink panties with princesses on them I keep in my pocket for emergencies. If ever I were to get searched by the police, it could get awkward: “No Officer, they are not for me…”