Sometimes success just sneaks up on you, especially when the journey's long and victory seemingly impossible.
Potty training has been that way for us.
With Emily, one day we just realized she hadn't pooped in her pants in over a week.
That was some time in March or April.
I'll admit, we didn't celebrate too much because we still had Drew who was nowhere close to being potty trained.
Even with one down, until we could ditch diapers for good, our journey wasn't over.
But, as we ended vacation last week, it hit us that we could finally raise the victory flag and plant it firmly on the pile of ten thousand + diapers we used in our three years and three months.
How did we know we had made it? That we were officially potty trained? Here are the top ten ways we knew it was official:
10. We are able to go to Chick Fil A and play without someone pooping in his/her pants.
9. They ask us to pause Bubble Guppies so they can go to the bathroom. Not too long ago, they would have peed right on through instead of missing 30 seconds of singing along with the show.
8. We got rid of the potty chairs, and they adjusted without so much as a mention of where the Elmo chair went. If you're big enough to use the potty, you're big enough to flush it.
7. After cleaning out the car and digging the diaper bag out from a pile of rubble, we realized we hadn't missed it. If you can go weeks without using it, obviously you don't need it.
6. We disposed of the upstairs and downstairs diaper pails. The downstairs closet smells better than it has in three years and three months. We've also rounded up left- over diapers, pull-ups, swimmies, scented trashbags, and changing pads and finally emptied baskets that were first filled before they even came home from the hospital.
5. Both of them sleep through the night without accidents. In fact, once we went cold turkey on the pull-ups, we didn't even use them at night. As long as we cut off the fluid an hour or so before bed and make sure they go before turning in, we don't have any problems.
4. In addition to fighting over songs on the radio, sides of the car, and who can run faster, they now fight over the bathroom. Something tells me we've only heard the beginning of, "Hurry up! You're taking too long!"
3. The same kiddos who once would do their business anywhere and let me change them anywhere now both proclaim, "I need my privacy" when it's potty time. I have no idea where they would have heard someone begging for privacy.
2. Going anywhere means feeling like we are on the World Potty Tour. A quick trip out turns into a three hour tour because they are drawn to a public restroom like a moth to a flame. Each trip tests my patience and fear of germs. At least I don't have to fight with them about washing their hands-- both love to play with soap dispenser, the faucet, the motion- activated paper towel dispenser, the swinging lid on the trash can...
I've even seen a couple of men's restrooms (and their patrons) since Drew has run alone into the male restroom a couple of times. Sorry, fellows.
And, how we really knew we'd made it...
1. Both of them ask to get out the swimming pool when it's time to pee. Shoot, I know grown folks who aren't potty trained that well.