Quite the Week!

March 18, 2009

Last Thursday, I wrote how it was a big day. I wrote too soon. It’s been stretching out into a big week of milestones.

Friday was Alex’s second day wearing only underwear at school. I learned when I dropped him off that his first day had gone better than we’d realized. He had only one “accident.” As normal, he wore a pull-up during naptime, and he managed to soak through the pull-up during nap. That’s what put him into that winner of an outfit of shorts, someone else’s underwear, and someone else’s socks. Anyway, Friday was not that good of a day. About five accidents at school.

Which brings us to Saturday, and our first day of keeping up the underwear-only regimen at home. I must say, this was tough on me. My normal mode of parenting on the weekends is to get Alex out of the house in the morning. This does two things. First, it keeps him engaged and wears him out. He takes a better nap and the rest of the day goes more smoothly. It also helps me – I get stir crazy in the house and I’d much rather get out to the farmer’s market, the aquarium, the zoo, a park… anything. No such luck on Saturday. We decided the prudent thing was to play it safe, stay at home, and keep offering Alex a chance to use the potty every half hour or so.

On the potty front, things went better than I expected. He had two accidents that day. Once, he was happily playing and then looked up at me and exclaimed, “Pee!” Sure enough, he had. He seemed a little surprised. The other accident was the dreaded #2, and what was worrisome is he didn’t seem to notice or care that he was walking around with dirty underwear.

On the stir-crazy front: We all felt it. Alex kept whining, “I want to go somewhere!” He didn’t nap that day. I had my fill of doing kid jigsaw puzzles. But by the end of the day, Alex seemed to have the potty thing down. He’d ask to use the potty, and he had no accidents after 10:00 AM. The hours spent on jigsaw puzzles were worth it.

Sunday’s big milestone, of course, was Alex’s birthday party. We tried to keep the invitation list small: Just four friends from school and four friends from outside school. It still made for a full (and loud!) house. Alex clearly had a great time. One interesting thing: Alex wouldn’t blow out the candles on his cake. They scared him. Last weekend, I suspected this would happen. We’d taken Alex and Patrick to our friend Tony’s birthday dinner at a nearby restaurant. At the end of dinner, the waiters brought out a cupcake with a candle for Tony. Alex turned to me, concerned, and asked, “Why did they bring him fire??” I tried to explain about candles for birthdays, but he just said, “I don’t want candles.” We didn’t listen to him, but we should have. He really didn’t want candles on his cake.

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Monday’s milestone: Monday night, Alex and Patrick shared a room for the entire night for the first time. This is the culmination of a week in which Patrick slept through the night, each night, uninterrupted. What a glorious thing.

Tuesday’s milestone: This has been Alex’s first full day without accidents, either at school or at home.

It’s been a whirlwind week. Both kids are changing & growing right in front of our eyes. Yeah, I know I’m supposed to savor each stage of their life and feel a little sad and nostalgic that they’re growing up. But really, I’m thrilled that Alex finally seems to “get” potty training and that Patrick is finally sleeping the night through. I’ll deal with the nostalgia later.