Potty Party | Episode of POTTY MOUTH Mom Web Series
Potty training is the weirdest, isn’t it? You buy books and read up on methods, you let your kids run around naked from the waist down and pee all over the floor, you reward them with candy when they poop on cue in the right receptacle… and that’s just the regular stuff. Depending on your personality and how desperate you are to achieve the goal, it gets much more bizarre. Twin Peaks level, even.
My mother asserts that I was fully potty trained at 15 months, but I don’t believe her. To give you perspective, my son didn’t even walk until he was 14 months, so how could a baby get herself on and off a toilet at that age? And wipe? And flush? I mean, my mom IS pretty lazy so I guess it’s conceivable that after a year and three months of being a parent she decided it was time I started taking care of myself, but the details of how that worked are fuzzy.
My little brother, however, was not toilet trained until he was four. My parents tried, and 6,7, and 8-year-old me was enlisted to help them try, but whenever we sat him on the Turtle-shaped toilet-topper, the little bugger just looked at us blankly and did not understand what on earth we wanted him to do. It drove everyone to the brink of madness… and eventually, invention.
The Potty Party | New POTTY MOUTH Video
Picture it: Philadelphia, 1984. A dad named Irv with a Mike Brady perm and a porn-style moustache has an idea inspired by a hook in the bathroom ceiling, which was probably used to suspend a houseplant at some point. He devises a hanging mobile comprised of stuffed animals bound together with rubber bands or twine, and when it is about a dozen toys long and dangling within view of his son, he begins to swing the monstrosity back and forth, chanting:
Make a sissy, make a sissy, make, make, make!
Take a poopy, take a poopy, take, take, take!
He does this for several minutes, over the course of many days, weeks and months. No one knows why he persists, for the boy just watches the spectacle with a Mona Lisa smile and proceeds to put his poopy and peepee in his diaper, where he believes it belongs. But the chant is catchy, the hook is handy, and nothing else is working. And his daughter (me) thinks this potty party is fun, so it’s probably worth it just for that.
Fast forward to February of 2016, after the 3-Day Potty Training pamphlet didn’t work on MY son, and my tendency toward ingenuity in the form of silliness overcame my ability to remain calm and patient.
It seemed perfectly rational at the time to coax my kid onto the toilet by promising him a Potty Party complete with hats and instruments. Unfortunately, all we had on hand for “party hats” were a striped beanie leftover from a Halloween costume, a straw hat my husband bought to go on a cruise (cruises call for special headwear, obviously), and a bike helmet. We also brought in a tambourine, maracas, and kazoo to play a celebratory tune if success should occur. We likely used the instruments to compose an on-the-spot encouragement march, and we may have even invoked my dad’s ditty from the days of yore, but I can’t confirm that because no audio or video recordings were taken. It’s all we could do to snap this selfie in the midst of such a shindig.
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