All right, already! I have heard the outcries from my followers looking for another blog post. We had a little longer pause than usual, but I had a very good reason. I was in the bathroom. With Sam.
Sam and I are having our rounds over pooping in the potty. The whole situation has turned into a prize fight between mother and son. We are now headed into the final rounds, each pulling ourselves up by the ropes and staggering to the center of the ring, as in toilet seat ring, unwilling to give up. My mother commented on my black eyes, of which I have two. They aren't the shiners from typical blows to the face. They are the dark circles that are the dead giveaway that I am losing sleep over this process.
Looking at these cute pictures, you would never guess that my son Sam can be the devil in disguise, the wolf in sheep's clothing, or the green grape out of the bunch. Big blue eyes, a dimple on the left cheek, and a charming smile make him look ready made for a Little Tykes commercial. I am the first to admit that he is far from easy. Being that I am a teacher, I can smell trouble at school from a mile away. I actually get nervous pulling into the parking lot of Milestones Early Learning Center. Milestones is a new business owned and operated by two high school friends of mine. They have embarked on a journey to see a life-dream to fruition, owning and operating their own Day Care/Preschool. The pair has done a fabulous job getting their business off the ground, and have hired the nicest most patient staff to help them out. Miss Erin, Sam's teacher is a saint. When I got a note in his mailbox the other day that said, Conference Needed, I knew I was in major trouble.
Every day the teachers write the parents little notes about how the day went. I can tell when I eyeball the note, even from a distance, by how much writing there is on the lines, how much trouble Sam got into that day. Sometimes there is so much writing on Sam's notes that I have to flip the sheet over to read the rest.
I'm over reacting, you're all thinking? Judge for yourself. Here is a sample of some of his finest:
Sam threw his shoe at Miss Brenda today. This is unacceptable behavior. Sam was removed from the classroom and spent time with Miss Brenda thinking about his behavior.
Miss Brenda, being the director, has many duties throughout the day, one of them being the preparation of lunch. Sam apparently was sitting on the naughty stool thinking about his behavior while she was in the kitchen fixing the plates. When I asked Sam about how it felt to have to leave all the other kids because he made a poor choice. His response to me was this: "It was cool in there. I helped her make lunch." Can you say D-I-S-C-O-N-N-E-C-T?!?
Here is another: When Sam is asked to do something, he usually screams "NO!" and stomps his foot and folds his arms across his chest. When I asked Sam to read me his note from that day, he pointed to each of the above words and said very angelically, "Sam---was---a---good---boy---today." Hey Sam, K-Mart called and your personality is in. Go pick it up.
I approached Miss Erin about the conference. I told her if she needed Louie and I both to take off work at 2:00 next week to come in and sit at a table made for 3-year-olds, so she can tell us that Sam is stubborn, that we were fully aware. No news to us. She smiled and corrected me. Miss Erin said that out of the fifty kids enrolled, he is the MOST stubborn. Great. We agreed to spare everyone some time and determined that we would all keep working hard, and remain firm, consistent, and patient. Much like an animal trainer does when trying to break a wild pony.
I challenge any wild pony trainer to try to get that pony to poop in the potty instead of the preferred pasture. That is what I have been doing with Sam the last week. It has been Sam vs. Mommy every evening for 12 days straight. Hard core poop training. We come in from school and play a bit. The first signs I see of Sam taking his telltale sneak, I put him on the potty and make him sit there. I am done with the bathroom entertainment sessions. No more me sitting there reading him books, blowing bubbles, and singing songs. Just Sam and his Thomas the Tank Engine Potty seat and a job to be done--literally.
On Wednesday, he was sitting there for awhile and nothing appeared to be happening, so I let him off the hook, or the ring rather. He got all zipped back up, hands washed, and ran right into the living room and hid behind the curtain and started to grunt. I flew in there as mad as not just a hornet, but the Queen Bee Hornet. I said to him, "What do you think you are doing?" He said in a not so nice tone, "I prefer to poop standing up!" (As you all can gather, he has my language ability). I screamed, "If you can use the word PREFER, you can poop on the potty!"
I put him in a barrel hold, and carried him kicking and screaming the whole way into our bathroom just off the kitchen. I stripped his pants and threw his komodo dragon underwear with the smushed Hershey Kiss turd in the bottom into the sink for soaking. I told him that he was not leaving the bathroom until something brown came out of him, even if I had to squeeze him like a tube of toothpaste. Sorry friends. I am at my breaking point so this was warranted. I wonder what Freud would say to that.
Sam cried and carried on so loudly that we shut the door to the bathroom and cranked the Carrie Underwood CD in the kitchen stereo. I made dinner. We ate dinner. We cleaned up dinner. I was on my second cup of coffee on the couch when I realized Sam was still in the bathroom. Flashes of that red ring around his naked little butt were running through my head as I was running to the bathroom to see if he still had circulation in his legs.
The bathroom was quiet as I approached it. I slowly opened the door to find Sam sitting there very calmly. I noticed little pieces of something white and curly all over the floor surrounding the toilet. I took a step into the bathroom and bent over to inspect what they were. I had to actually grab the wall to steady myself when I realized Sam had peeled the wallpaper off of the bathroom wall, piece by piece.
The room started to spin when I croaked out, "Sam, what are you doing!?" He looked at me and said, "It's boring in here. There is nothing to do!"