I recently (several weeks ago?) had a friend message me on Facebook asking several questions about potty training, weaning, sharing a room and that sort of thing. I'm going to try to give some concise updates in this post.
I feel inspired to write today because I have recently jumped back on the cloth diapering band wagon. I'm yet again washing diapers in the toilet and feeling like I'm super hardcore. You know you are hardcore about saving money that in order to save 29 cents you clean your child's excrement out of their diaper to reuse it later. I always thank the Lord when I open it up and there's no poop, or at least when it's solid enough to just toss in the toilet. Yes, I do have those flushable liners, but so often I forget, or this is even sillier, I think "I don't want to waste this liner, she just pooped, so we will go without one this time." Anyways, I like the cloth diapering, mainly for the fact that I don't have to pay for diapers every week. Right now, every little bit helps.
Sharing a room. Aria and Levi are currently not sharing a room. I'm going to blame teething. She is still unpredictably waking in the middle of the night and screaming. This causes Levi to wake and also scream. For about a week I was going in, getting Aria, settling down Levi, bringing her to bed to nurse, and then waking 30 mins later to put her back in her own bed. One time this happened twice in one night. After about a week of that I told Ben that we could set up the pack n play in the guest room and she could sleep in there. I'm actually kind of glad we are doing this because I want her to be used to sleeping in a pack n play. I felt like Levi always slept in his crib better because he was not used to the feel of the pack n play. I think this will make trips easier for us this way. My thought is that she will go back into her crib around 18 months because maybe sleep will be a little more regular then.
Speaking of nursing... I think we are about done with Aria. It makes me kind of sad. A few reasons: Part of me was really proud that we were going so long, in a sort of braggy, La Leche League sort of way, we were still nursing and I was proud that we had kept it up so long. I know, that's totally dumb. Another reason is that I need to be a little more conscious of her diet, making sure she eats a wide variety of food. This is especially difficult because she seems to only like two food groups: meat and fruit. Green stuff? No way. I was really surprised when she ate some peas the other day. So far she spits out broccoli and peppers like nobody's business.
Will I EC Aria? (Takes a deep breath). I don't think I'm going to do any EC'ing with Aria. I thought it was so cool with Levi and I love the idea of it. The problem is that our culture is not conducive to EC'ing. We have things like carseats and high chairs. It's customary to have clothing on your children at all times. We also have TONS of carpet in our house. The only rooms without carpet are the kitchen and the hall bathroom, totally dumb. I would be more okay with babies wandering around without diapers if only our house was all tile or wood, something that would clean up easier. Oh well. I did think that I might do it when she was older (9-12 months) but by that time I just didn't want to take the time. That's kind of another thing, just the time and energy it took to catch everything, it's kind of nice to just relax with her and not worry about it.
Potty Training. Levi was a beast to potty train. What child isn't? Okay, I've heard those stupid dream stories of kids potty training in like 3 hours, and please don't tell me those. I want to hear about the kid that took a month and still struggled. :) Levi took about 2 weeks. Even then, he wasn't fully "trained" because I still had to make him go and help him get on and off the potty and wipe him and everything. That's sort of the choice you make. You can wait longer and they will be more independent, or you can do it sooner and it will be more reliant upon you as the mom. I'm sure this is not always the case, each child is different. I think the closer to 2 they are, the more they need help, the closer to 3 they are, the more they can do on their own. Just a developmental thing.
Levi was pretty good with the pee's, we had accidents and stuff, but he didn't have issues with going on the potty. It was the poops that were the problem. It absolutely terrified him to poop on the potty. I tried to distract him with videos and things, but that didn't work. After about a week of staying in the house, Levi in just a t-shirt, no pants, accidents on the floor and constipation I finally said,
"Okay Levi, we are going to Target to get some presents."
"Yes, let's put on your clothes and some shoes and go to Target and get some presents for when you go poopoo on the potty."
He didn't know what Target was exactly, but he knew what presents were. Especially after Christmas and birthdays that year. We packed up Aria (about ten weeks at the time), went to the dollar section at Target and he helped me pick out about ten little toys. We threw them in the cart and went and got some wrapping paper and tape. We got home and when he went to bed that night I wrapped them and put them on the island in the kitchen. The next morning he came out to some beautifully wrapped presents. We explained that he had to go poopoo on the potty and then he could unwrap a present.
It took the whole morning for him to get up the courage to go on the potty. He would say, "I gotta go poopoo." And sit on the potty for a minute and then decide he didn't want to. I think he was afraid. Finally, he sat down on the potty and started screaming. "No! No!" I rushed to him and realized he was pooping. "Yes! Yes! You're doing great! You can do it!" I almost laughed to myself because it totally reminded me of when I birthed Aria. I felt like I was coaching a woman through natural childbirth. When it was finally over he was crying. This surprised me because I thought he'd be great when he was done. I had to console him some more, we got an M&M plus he got to unwrap his present. That week we had many more presents and the poops became less and less traumatic. I will never forget that first time though.
Right now he is almost completely independent. The only thing is that I wipe him for poops. I don't trust him yet and I want to make sure it stays clean down there.
So, that's my update. I hope you enjoyed!