Big Boys and Girls

by mssinglemama on September 4, 2009

I’m announcing the winners to three contests today but you’re all winners.

You know why?

Because, long ago, you learned how to go on the potty. If you’ve seen this video you know I don’t like talking about bodily movements or anything close to them in public. But because Benjamin’s bowel movements, or lack thereof, are the reason I am up – right now – at 6:00 a.m., I feel obligated to share.

I am tired but happy, curled up in a little blanket on the big chair in the living room. Benjamin is coloring. I’m happy because he just ate a magnificent breakfast,  breakfast fit for a big kid – three eggs and an entire bowl of oatmeal. He woke up at 5:45 saying, “Mommy, I’m hungry.” Hungry and awake because last night he couldn’t go on the potty and then decided not to go at all. The tummy ache or cramped up poopy feeling made him pass on his dinner. Like the bad mommy that I am, I completely forgot to force a bowl of yogurt on him before bed. Now here we are – awake before the sun is even up.

I’ve tried every bribe in the book, every imaginable thing a kid could want he has been offered on multiple occasions. Last week, when he started clutching his belly and begging for a diaper, jumping up and down saying, “Mommy, it hurts, Mommy, it hurts! I need a diaper”, I told him a big, rotten fat lie. It went something like this, “While you were at your Daddy’s this week Santa came into the house and took each and every one of your diapers. Then he told me he’s watching to see if you poop on the potty. If you do, then he’ll bring you tons of presents at Christmas.”

The kid shot like a dart to the toilet, sat there for a few minutes and then dropped a tiny, little package that was worthy of me freaking out. Then Benjamin joined in the joyous shouting and jumping. At one point he even crushed his arms together like a WWF wrestler and growled, pulsing all of the muscles in his little neck, “I pooooooppped on the potttty. Grrrrrr.”

We called John Bear immediately, “Hello, Santa.” I said. “Benjamin just pooped on the potty and he wants to talk to you.”

“No way! He did?” John Bear was beyond thrilled. It’s something about being a man, he wants Benjamin to learn how to use the potty like one. The diaper thing, although John has been amazing about it, is definitely up there on the slightly uncomfortable although entirely tolerable side effects to dating a single mom.

“Yes, he totally pooped on the potty. So Santa, can you talk to Benjamin?” Benjamin was buying the whole thing hook line and sinker, gazing up at me with his mouth hanging open.

“I’m at work. I can’t do that right now,” he laughed. Well, you’re about to anyway, I thought while looking at my adoring kid.

“Okay, hold on Santa, here he is.”

I handed the phone to Benjamin and then I heard John Bear’s booming Santa voice pipe through the phone. Benjamin could barely speak and after a few seconds of chatting handed the phone back to me. Then we headed out to our favorite used toy store to pick out a prize and when we got home there was a mysterious present waiting on the kitchen table.

“How did this get here? It must have been Santa!” I exclaimed while Benjamin looked on in amazement at the Transformer bobble head doll.

“I was at the grocery store and I saw it so I picked it up,” John told me later. Wow. Perfect timing on all fronts. But, in spite of our flawless pre and post potty package drop extravaganza the next day when he had to go Benjamin gave me one look and then ran up into his room for a diaper. He didn’t even think twice about trying the potty again. We’ve been downplaying it and ignoring it ever since but still encouraging him to go when it’s time.

So, here I am. Wide awake and knowing that I’ll be exhausted in a few hours. Isn’t that the rule of parenthood though, the reason why we all fall off the face of the Earth for years after the newborn arrives – poop and sleep, poop and sleep and then other stuff like teething and growing pains and scary monsters in the closet.

Now you know why you’re all winners.

It’s because at one point in your life your mother was freaking out training you how to use the potty and eventually you both crossed that victory line together. You don’t remember it, I’m sure … but I promise you it was probably quite a feat.


Now the winners of those fun contests:

My Single Mamas (a sexy contest)

Grand Prize Winner of the Flirty Apron, Ms. Single Mama Uncensored and New Leaf Necklace in brass is: La Primera.

Runners-up, who all receive a copy of Ms. Single Mama Uncensored:

Miss Kitty

My Super Hero Contest

Grand Prize Winner of the I’m Your Bus Back to School Kit, the cape and a copy of Ms. Single Mama Unccensored is: Single Mom in New England!!!

[I pick these winners randomly by scrolling down with my finger on the screen and when it landed on her I freaked becuase she’s been reading my blog since its start.]

Runners-up, who all receive a copy of Ms. Single Mama Uncensored and I’m Your Bus:


Haunted Bedford Contest

Winner a copy of Ms. Single Mama Uncensored: @alyssainez

Thanks everyone for entering. I think we had over 200 comments in all to the contests. You should know I read every single one of your comments, always. Can’t respond to all of them anymore but I am reading them.

More big contests coming up next week. Going to be really, really good. Not sure why but I get the coolest prizes ever.

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Alexis September 4, 2009 at 6:47 am

I loved reading this today…I have to go clean the urine soaked bedding from my boy’s bed right now, and too was up way too early…but no complaints- this is mamahood.


Ashley September 4, 2009 at 6:57 am

Very awesome!!! Yay Benjamin!!!

Good luck with all of it! I kept getting and staying inwardly frustrated about it but once Ty finally decided he was onboard with it, we never looked back and haven’t had a problem since!


Angela September 4, 2009 at 7:16 am

OH that is so exciting!!! Potty training was such a HUGE deal in our house. My step father kept saying I just dont know how you are going to teach him. He needs a man to show him. He needs a man to stand there blah blah blah. I let that discourage me for a long time but finally I said NO WAY MAN!!! Thousands of women have taught boys how to do this and I will be one more. So we spent a nice three day weekend at home in nothing but a t-shirt and hit the potty every 30 min or so. TA DA!! Now at almost 5 years old he does pretty good. He still has to wear pull ups at night because his poor bladder just wont last all night and I still do have to remind him to put his toys down and go instead of wiggling around. BUT no more diapers and I did it ALL MY BY MYSELF!!!! 🙂


Jill September 4, 2009 at 7:16 am

That’s such a cute story! I can’t wait to have kids and experience all of these little joys, like getting excited over poop in a potty 🙂 I hope he goes back to the potty soon!


Lauren September 4, 2009 at 8:02 am

Ugh, I’m not looking forward to potty training at all! Maybe I’ll get lucky and Anna will be amazing at it — I mean, I’ve already seen her wipe her butt with toilet paper (she has seen me on the the potty countless times since I have to leave the door open to keep an eye on her).

I can so understand the earlier than usual wake ups right now. For the past week, Anna has decided that 5 am is time to get up.


Kaylin September 4, 2009 at 8:03 am

I am SO excited that I won a copy of Ms. Single Mama Uncensored. What a great time to win it- with the long holiday weekend ahead! I am having a hard time not starting to read it now, but I need to get to work. Soon enough though the weekend will be here, and I will be enjoying the book. THANK YOU! And congratulations Benjamin for pooping on the potty. I am sure there will be many more poops on the potty soon.


Phoenix September 4, 2009 at 8:27 am

I was so grateful that Spud had a guy for his preschool teacher when we were doing the potty training thing! And our best guy friends lived in the other half of our double, so that helped a lot, too. When they’re ready, they’re ready.


Melissa September 4, 2009 at 9:12 am

Hey there ladies!! I like to think I am a single mommy potty training pro! Have you tried making him change his own diaper??? I know that sounds a little shall we say, MESSY….but when my youngest was three and I had had it up to here with diapers, I said thats it!!!! One particularly icky diaper came along and I put my darling son in the bathroom with a box of wipes, closed the door and told him “mommy is done with poopy diapers, so if you wont go on the potty you’re just going to have to clean it up yourself!) I left him alone in the bathroom crying and sobbing and begging me to change it, but after a few minutes he realized I wasn’t going to help, and it was eerily silent for like, i don’t know maybe 15 minutes? And when he came out he was clean (mostly), and he never never wanted to touch that nasty stuff again, and NEVER have we had an accident since!! Now, the condition of my bathroom was kinda gross and he learned wipes cannot be flushed, but…no more diapers!!! My oldest was harder, and, like the lovely lady above, I stayed home for a whole week with her in nothing but a tshirt, and by day 7 she absolutely could not hold it in. We celebrated with cake and balloons, and she also, like my son, has never had an accident! They are 6 and 9 now, and mammas, I feel your pain! It will happen in time. (hope its before kindergarten…)


Sheila September 4, 2009 at 10:11 am

“Santa” is a great idea! LOL … I’ll have to remember that one.


Hanna September 4, 2009 at 10:33 am

All I can say is potty training has led me to do things I never thought I would do as a mother. Only when I gave up did I finally accomplish any sort of victory. GO BENJAMIN!


Robin September 4, 2009 at 10:43 am

I actually cried when Reagan pooped in the potty for the first time! I was so proud of him … because it was the first thing he did as an actual conscious decision and accomplishment! Motherhood can produce strange reactions that one never would have been able to predict beforehand!


arscuore September 4, 2009 at 12:34 pm

I’m so tired of poop I could cry. We’re actually heading to the doctor next week because my 7 yo (with autism – wore diapers until last year) had intestinal surgery as an infant, and I want to make sure his pooping issues aren’t physiological… bleh.


Carol September 4, 2009 at 2:29 pm

I CANT BELIEVE I WON! Very much looking forward to the read.


nicole September 4, 2009 at 4:51 pm

My son (and his name happens to be Benjamin) had the EXACT same issue and I don’t want to depress you and tell you how long it went on. My Ben is extremely strong willed which has turned out to be an excellent quality when it comes to school and sports but not potty training. Don’t want to share too many details but next time you try no diapers make sure you fill him up with fiber at every meal, I mean like blending prunes into his smoothies, peaches pears, raisins, anthing you can thing of along those lines. It made it difficult for him to withhold even though he tried for like three days–totally freaked me out but mission was accomplished. Kept up with that diet until we were good and sure he had completely overcome the whole diaper thing.


Amy September 4, 2009 at 6:41 pm

Way to go Benjamin!
Son was 3 and a bit and caught on within a day or two, even nights! Get rid of all the diapers and pull ups, let him FEEL the nastiness! My son HATED being dirty. And great idea on making him clean himself, heh. Good one!

Daughters not so much but as twins they got into the competitive side of it all 😉

J Bear sounds like a keeper :))


Marie September 5, 2009 at 11:43 am

Congrats! What an achievement! We are still in pooping in the diaper land – despite many attempts at moving on….but it will happen. Yes….it will. At least before college. 🙂


Allison September 8, 2009 at 8:32 am

My son had a very similar problem to Benjamin’s. I finally realized that, at least in my son’s case, he was holding it because it did hurt! My Dr. recommended this special tea from the health food store. I mixed it 3 cups of water to one tea bag & kept it in a little pitcher in the fridge. Then I would mix it in with his apple juice. He never knew it. I remember the first time it kicked in, he went running down the hall like he was never going to make it. I think I even teared up a little bit because it had been such a long struggle. Once Dylan figured out that it didn’t hurt to go if he didn’t hold it, there was never any more problems. Good luck!


Single Mom in New England September 8, 2009 at 7:55 pm

Woo hoo! I’m so excited!! Thanks for sharing your great writing, and your life, with us! This made coming back to work after a long holiday weekend pretty bearable! Thanks again!! 🙂


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