For no better reason than I am clearly a masochist, I decided this afternoon it might be a good time to put Miss Curly Mop in knickers.
Let's be clear - she has shown no interest whatsoever in the toilet. To the contrary, she literally runs screaming in the opposite direction when I stick her on there. Potty, toilet, big, small - doesn't matter. She's not interested.
But overhearing a conversation this morning by a Mum whose girls have both been toilet trained well before their second birthday, that she felt the best time was between 18 months and two years before they become wilful and opinionated rang a few alarm bells.
The Mop is two in a week.
She's already wilful and opinionated.
Looking into the crystal ball at her pre-school, tweenie and teenage years, I can't see her getting any better.
Guess this is it then.
So upon waking from her nap, I bundled the Blonde Bombshell and the Mop into the car, and headed to a local department store to purchase some dinky little knickers. If it wasn't totally weird and inappropriate I would show you a photo of the cute undies we ended up getting. Little checks and ruffles and kitty cats and monkeys with stripes. She was so thrilled, she insisted on putting a pair on in the middle of the shop, and I then had to contend with the possibility of getting nabbed shoplifting some size 2s.
Turns out it was incredibly easy getting her out of her nappy and into knickers.
The problem, it quickly became apparent, is getting her to NOT poo and wee in her knickers, because she is still terrified of the potty.
By some stroke of luck, the girls' daddy happened to be home mid-afternoon when we ceremoniously took off her nappy and pulled on her first pair of Big Girl Undies. She and her big sister then went about the business of being kids and started playing and dancing, while hubby and I sat on the couch, eyes glued to her crotch, waiting for the inevitable.
'Should I roll up the rug?', he asked.
Eventually we got bored of waiting for the wee and started making dinner. Before long, we heard the thunder of little feet pounding through the house.
'Here we go,' I muttered.
'Mum, the Mop pooed in her new knickers,' the Bombshell announced breathlessly.
'Excellent,' said Daddy.
'I smelled the poo and then I saw the brown on her undies and then it started coming through,' the Bombshell told me helpfully.
I heaved myself off the chair and followed the Bombshell to the Mop's room, where she was already climbing up onto the change table. I picked her up, letting her stand on my arm rather than have her squidgy poo butt sitting on my bump and we all went to the bathroom. She started to shriek.
'Nooooo Mummy. Noooo Mummy, not nice. Not nice,' she hollered trying to escape.
'I need to put your poo in the toilet darling, that's all,' I told her.
'Can I see it?', ask the Bombshell.
The Mop had already done a runner by this stage and I literally had to catch her by the ankles and pull her ponky knickers off as she grabbed at the carpet and tried to pull herself forward on her tummy. Thank god she hadn't done a wee as well.
With the Bombshell being the only interested party present, I scraped the mess into the loo. The Mop poked her head around the door. I convinced her to come in so I could wipe her bottom and she promptly assumed the position that the Bombshell is known for. Feet and hands flat on the floor, legs spread, bum in the air, waiting expectantly. Good to see she is learning something useful from her sister.
Bottom wiped, we all peered into the loo.
'Do you want to press the button?' I asked the Mop.
'Noooooo', she shrieked and ran off.
'I'll do it Mum,' the Bombshell said. Thanks darling.
About 20 minutes later, with Pair Number 1 soaking in the laundry, and Pair Number 2 proudly being worn, we sat down to dinner. I could see the wee coming before the Mop even realised what was happening. She stood on her chair and looked at the puddle with a puzzled expression. It began dripping on the floor.
'Ace', said Dad.
Her little face looked mortified. 'Uh oh' she said. My heart just went out to her.
While Daddy tried to get her to sit on the potty ['Nooooo Daddy, nooooo'] I wiped and disinfected the chair and floor. Even the promise of a piece of chocolate could not convince her to sit on the potty.
'I'll run a bath', said Dad.
So at the end of Day 1, we have two pairs of little knickers soaking in a bucket, an unused potty in the family room, and four more pairs of new undies for tomorrow.
I know the rules: be persistent and consistent, never get upset about accidents, keep praising all effort, but does anyone have any other advice? It would be great to the get the Mop out of day time nappies before the baby arrives, but I also don't want to force her if she's not ready.