I judged.

There. I said it. I suppose I have to be honest here.

I judged those crazy parents and their crazy kids and vowed I’d NEVER be a parent like that. My kids are going to be perfect is what I’d tell myself. (And they are! Don’t get me wrong. At least I was right about that.)

I bet if we are all honest, we can all say we judge how others do things to some degree. Come on…be honest. 🙂

My kids would never eat that processed crap they sell at the store.

And yet they did. My motto became whatever they’ll eat is wonderful, just eat!

My kids would never throw a tantrum like THOSE kids in the middle of the store.

And they have. Thankfully it was just once that I remember, which is still pretty good considering that we have three potential time bombs on our hands. We are fortunate that they are pretty decently behaved in public.

There are a few more gems that I vowed never to do. I have of course seen the cold, sometimes harsh light of reality. With kids, it all sort of becomes fair game. You just do what you gotta do.

I laugh in the face of the old me!

Take bribery for instance. The pre kids me vowed I’d never bribe my kids. Oh, no. My little angels would just do whatever I asked out of the goodness of their hearts. We wouldn’t need bribery. For a while, I didn’t. But I didn’t realize how EFFECTIVE and EFFICIENT bribery is in the parent’s arsenal of tricks. Once I learned that, it crept in ever so slowly.

Eat all your sandwich, and I’ll give you more chips.

If you’re very good, then we can go to the store.

You know, stuff like that.

That is until our family met our biggest foe thus far………..

The Potty. (I imagine “dum, dum, dummmmm” playing in the background every time I hear that word. Potty. There it went again. Did you hear it?)

Potty training has been quite the experience. The boys got their first potties over a year ago. I was all bight eyed and optimistic that the boys would potty train easily. Ha. For the longest time, neither boy wanted anywhere near the potty for anything other than to store their cars in them.

Then the bribery started.

Sit on the potty for 10 seconds and you get some jellybeans. Okay, that worked, but the boys would only do said sitting with all of their clothes on, which as I am sure you are aware DEFEATS THE PURPOSE OF SITTING ON THE POTTY. Still, I soldiered on, wanting them to at least get over their fear.

Santa was kind enough to bring them some undies in their stockings this last Christmas.

The boys would have none of that. Sigh.

Then I got all professional and went all teachery. I broke out the charts. I moved to the big guns. Pee on the potty and get jellybeans AND a sticker! 5 stickers and YOU GET A PRIZE!

The boys insisted that mommy and daddy got a chart too. Ok, no problem. Except only mommy and daddy ever got any stickers. We were earning prizes left and right.

The boys?

Not so much.

They stopped being interested in the jellybeans. No one had yet earned a sticker. And no, there was no pee in the potty from them either.

Today, I got smart. I went for the cannon. Pee or poop on the potty and get a matchbox car. Jason heard that, and his interest was definitely peaked. When I pulled out the cars for him to look at, I had him.

He got on the potty. Nothing. He admired the cars he wanted. Nothing. I gave him TWO glasses of water. Nothing. I turned on the water. Nothing.

He was done and wanted down. He also cried and threw a fit because he didn’t get his car. Off he went to console himself in the living room. Not ten seconds later, he started again with I want a caaaaaaarrrrrrr!!!! I asked him if he needed to get on the potty.

Why yes, yes he did!

“Here it comes!” he said. Voila! He earned a car! He earned a sticker! He asked for some jellybeans, so I threw that in there, too! Woohoo!

He later added another sticker for pooping in the potty after this!

Now, I am a smart girl. I can see that this getting a matchbox car every time you get on the potty is going to get expensive. But you know what, I’m not thinking about that right now.

My boy is finally peeing on the potty. That is what matters here. (And woohoo! One less diaper to change. Yippee!)

Stacie is the proud MoM of 4 year old fraternal twin boys, Shawn and Jason, and eleven month old Jackson. Keep up with Stacie and her family at 3 For Team Lopez!