Friday, August 10, 2012

Very long potty training post

OK, I've been putting off this post for a few days now. Mainly because typing it out and making it public is like officially stating "I failed." And that hurts my heart. Let me start with the end. The girls are back in diapers. We are back to our everyday routine. And if it wasn't for the nagging, depressing feeling of I completely and utterly failed at potty training I would be so very much relieved.

After our three day "Hell Boot Camp," I affectionately call it, after I conceded and put the girls back into diapers I gave them the biggest hug and shed a few tears because I actually missed my girls. I had been so stressed out and so focused on getting them to the potty before Niagara Falls took over my floor that we hadn't played and snuggled and loved on each other for three days and my arms and heart just ached for them. I could tell they missed me too because they just hooted and hollered and giggled like mad when they realized.... it was over....

I did not see this coming. I honestly did not. I did not even have a back up plan, which is very unlike me. I was so confident that this would work. The first day was what I expected it to be. Messy. Wet. Stressful. Exhausting. Jared and I were completely fatigued by the end of day 1. You have no idea how stressful constantly being on edge to watch for pee times THREE is. Day 2 was where I was getting worried. Because it looked a lot like day 1. I emailed the author (when you buy the program you get free consultation from the author with any questions you have) with my questions. Unfortunently, it takes 24 hours for a response... so can you see the issue. By day 3 there was still no progress. We kept thinking, "oh maybe Mia gets it now!" Then... nope.... When I finally got a response from the author she actually said "maybe you should take a break." Really!??! Are you kidding. The author didn't even have faith in my training triplets.

By the end of day three Jared and I had had all we could have. With no progress and Jared going to work the next day leaving me to myself with this project, I did not know what to do!! Somewhere deep inside I got the nerve to push through. I told Jared I would keep going with the program tomorrow, even though he suggested (insisted) we quit and try something different another time. But I didn't want to quit if miraculously tomorrow they just clicked and got it. It was the same as every other day. When they went down for their naps, I put the diapers on, said goodnight, closed the door, and sobbed like a baby. It was all for nothing....

The girls were not sleeping near as well or long the entire process so they were so cranky and they were picking up on my stress which did NOT help the situation. It was the right thing to do, quit. But the word INADEQUATE could not be more my motto right now. Thats the deep down sensitive gooey-center feelings I have pouring out right now. I am so very inadequate to do this job. I have been so blessed thus far to have the best help a girl can have from family (I miss my Lisa!) but on my own... Im just inadequate. There is literally no other word to describe it. It surprised me when I was swamped with this emotion that day that I remembered not being able to produce enough milk for all my girls when I was pumping. No matter how much disgusting green tea crap I drank, or calories I ate, or rest I had, I could only make enough for 2 1/2 babies. Not three. I felt so inadequate then and I do now.

Im sorry I don't have a triumphant success story to relate to my family (who so sweetly and misguidedly call me "super mom") and fellow moms of multiples. I so wish I did. I am going to do more research on potty training and come up with a new plan. It might be a few months before we try again (we all need to re cooperate). I might even do them one at a time instead of a group effort. Who knows.

I have some photos and videos to upload of our adventure but as I still don't have a computer with space to download said photos and videos, they will have to wait. I will include more details about what we did each day, ect. at that time. Until then...


  1. Don't beat yourself up! At least you tried. Remember how I am simply terrified of it, so I'm putting it off as long as I can? At least you were brave and gave it a shot!

    I definitely know how you feel about feeling inadequate. I have family close, but have really had any help at all with the twins. I cannot.imagine.that.with.three. There are many days where I shed a lot of tears because I'm outnumbered. And I certainly felt inadequate when I only produced enough milk for 1.5 babies instead of two. I like you drank and took nasty, weird stuff to try to make it work, but it didn't work.

    So although I only have two, I do understand. And I understand people calling you "super mom" when you feel like you suck. Sometimes I even find that term offensive because I feel like everyone thinks I'm a liar because they MUST KNOW how crappy of a job I think I'm doing.

    Wow. Didn't mean to go off on that tangent...haha! Just know that there's someone out there (and really, a LOT of "someones") who feel the same way. But guess what? We aren't failures. We aren't inadequate. At least I "know" that's what I should be telling myself. I'm not quite sure I fully believe it, but I do know that we're doing our best as moms of multiples and sometimes things don't work out quite like we planned, but in the end, they do. Our girls won't be in diapers forever. Someday they'll get it... I hope. ;)

    Sorry or the novel, but keep your chin up! You're doing great!

  2. Ashlee,

    I didn't call you Wonder Woman because I thought you could do anything and everything. I called you Wonder Woman because I know you will take what comes head on and will do your best. You are the most prepared, put together, daring woman I know - you may scoff at that, but it's true. Even superheroes lose a few battles, but in the end you know they'll win when it's most important. You are a hero, Ashlee. And before you roll your eyes and laugh at your ridiculous, far-too-sweet little sister in law, may I say, this is not me being sweet, this is me being truthful. Heroes aren't perfect people. They're people who try their hardest. And that's what you are.

    And as for this: "(I miss my Lisa!)" I miss you too. You and Jare, and the girls. I miss you all a *lot*, and I think about you guys all the time. There's not a person I call friend who has not heard something of my time in Texas and how much I miss my family there.

    You are amazing. Perhaps you didn't live up to your own expectations this time - and you know your expectations of yourself are sky high, don't deny it, you could give yourself some slack - but you tried your hardest, and for that you are still my hero.

    Love you guys,


  3. Dear Sweet Ashlee,
    Please know how much we love you and your girls and our wonderful son. We pray for you daily. I wish we were closer to help more. I've always said that guilt comes with motherhood right about the same time as the afterbirth is delivered. As a mother and even now grandmother, I know that I never felt adequate. Looking back now at my mothering there are so many things I wish I did differently and feel bad about. As a grandmother I feel like there's not enough of me to be where are my darlings are and that I can't give enough. I think all women are cursed with this perspective. As I said, it appears shortly after birth and continues probably forever.
    I know you'll figure things out and the whole potty training business will someday just click. As for now know that you are loved and that we think you are an amazing success.
    Please give those sweethearts a hug from Grandma.

  4. Ashlee!!!! I can't tell you enough how totally awesome you are. You were blessed with these girls because YOU are the only woman for the job. YOU are the only one who can be their mom. I understand that it is overwhelming, I understand failure. You will get it, in time. Just think... you don't see 10 year olds in diapers! It'll come when the girls are ready. And it will be easy then. Keep your head high, remember how VERY much trust your Father has in you to bless you with those special little girls. You truly ARE supermom! I love you!

  5. I have followed your blog for quite a while now, and I can most confidently say that you ARE NOT A FAILURE OR INADEQUATE. Don't be so hard on yourself, I agree with you about taking a break, every child is different, and trust me when I say that it will come to them when it is time. I mean, it isn't like they are going to be teenagers in diapers! Sorry, just a shot a humor there :-) I don't know if you remember me at all, but we worked together at A Plus Benefits... Many moons ago :))

  6. You are brave to try as early as you did. I feel like with multiples, you need them to be a little older and wiser so they can catch on quicker. That's why I'm just starting mine now at nearly 3 years old. It's still hard, believe me! I thought about doing them together, but one or at a time has always been my plan. You can always try it like that, and see if it's better on your nerves. I find that when I'm training one, the others really do want to join in. But I'm only really focusing on one person, and only watching their accidents. It just seems easier, if there is an easier in this situation. Having three sets of eyes is hard enough on a daily basis, but it will fry your brain to have to watch out for pee puddles in all directions all day long. Try a different approach next time and it might rejuvenate you. But please do give yourself a much needed break until then. They're still young. I can't wait until we both have successes to write to everyone about!

  7. Hey Ashlee!

    I got all kinds of flack from people about my 3 year old still being in diapers. But sit back and think about it... why is that bad? I have 5 kids and none of them were potty trained until they were 3 1/2. My philosophy? Why stress myself out and spend weeks trying to potty train when I can wait a little bit longer until they're older and then they get it sooooo much faster! I never spent more than 2-3 days potty training my kids. I did introduce underwear here and there and have to deal with accidents but when it came time to buckle down and actually potty train them it went fast. Now that my youngest is 7 I have no regrets with potty training all 5 kids when they were 3 and older. It's not worth it to potty train them earlier. It's not as glorious as people make it seem. Once they're trained then you spend 5 years taking them all to the potty over and over while you're at Red Robin for 1 hour. You're doing fine!!!

    One more thing, My #4... she knew how to use the potty and was just stubborn and didn't want to do it. One day she asked to wear underwear and I told her no because I didn't think she could do it. No lie, from then on she was potty trained.

    Carrie (Amdal)

  8. p.s. Having said all that, potty training is my most hated thing about little ones. HATE IT!!!