One-hundred Twenty-three Ways to Pee


This past summer as parents we had a pretty significant breakthrough in our world of raising children. Just as we began attaching the velcro flaps of some size one diapers (and wondering how many times we would need to refinance our house to afford them), we were able to ditch the size fives. We somehow, with minimal resistance were able to get our two-year old potty trained before he hit two and a half. We felt great about it. We celebrated as a family this monumental moment. Sure…It took about 350 stickers entered into a “potty-book”, and there were days/weeks where we were sure that it was never going to happen; but all in all the time, energy and tricks we needed to use were a lot less substantial then anticipated.

With this new skill came a new phenomenon. Madden began to show such curiosity and creativity towards peeing that I was convinced he was training for some yet to be invented Olympic event that involved urinating. There had always been some boring, long lasting, classic maneuvers he used. Peeing in the tub had became a fan favorite. But all of a sudden, we were ready to explore the full range of possibilities that involved our stream.

First came the intrigue with location. You’re out running an errand or at a restaurant and right on cue you hear “Daddy, I got to pee.” Every public restroom absolutely had to be looked-over by the newly self-appointed health inspector. Hannafords, Wal-Mart, Porta-potties…We visited the bathroom of a diner in Rochester no less then eight times in one meal on the way back from the ocean. It’s hard to tell your newly potty-trained two-year old that seven times is enough; the last thing you want to have to do is strip him down from his pee-soaked clothes in the 5 x 5 stench filled cell of a bathroom, when you deny him number eight. He’d pee’d in the woods, pee’d in a hole on the beach, pee’d on the fence at the park, pee’d in a pond. But as annoying as this process had become, I had at least heard of such an interest.

What I hadn’t caught wind of is the variety of ways that a two-year old will attempt to sit or stand to go. We needed our pants off, then our pants at our ankles, then one ankle. We had to be sitting on his training potty, but then we had to be standing at his training potty. But then we wanted to be sitting again; this time on mommy and daddy’s potty, both facing out-then facing in…and then we even needed to be kneeling on the potty, which was just weird (but this one seems to be sticking, literally). We had to be held up to the potty, but then we wanted mommy and daddy to leave when we potty. We would need a stool to stand on to go potty, but then we would need to be sitting down when we flushed the potty. It was an extremely experimental phase, and I’m not convinced we are done. But I’m waiting for the day he asks to sit on the water tank of the toilet (I have my limit).

Like all boys, he prefers to pee outside. And to be honest, I hope that lasts. He has pretty bad aim.