I think one of the greatest mom moments might be when you say goodbye to diapers: the moment when you realize you no longer need to carry a diaper bag, no longer need to search out bathrooms with changing tables, and no longer need to keep the Diapers.com app open at all times. For all of you moms of toddlers, both who are on the cusp or who have recently completed potty training, you get what we are talking about. It’s a goodbye moment that you never thought would come. And unlike the many places, events, and people you have waved goodbye to, this one evokes intensely polarized feelings: relief and reminiscing, escape and longing, and happiness and sadness (whoever thought they would miss a diaper!). But while most of us are not bummed about saying goodbye to cleaning someone’s bum, we feel a twinge of sadness for the mommying chapter that is closing.
In many ways, the early days of mommying are like running the hurdles. And even if you are not a track star, you get the reference. But it’s not only the ups and downs that those infant and toddler days bring, but also the major events that need to be tackled, one after another: feeding, sleeping, crawling, walking, talking, peeing, and pooping. You clear one, and it’s on to the next. And these hurdles, unlike that track and field event you watched on TV, are not all the same height. Some are super, super high.
Potty training is one of those skyscraper-like hurdles. And whether you decide to follow the “Child-Oriented/Brazelton Approach” or the “Toilet Training in Two Days or Less Approach,” it can be a bear or a major pain in the behind. And trust us, we are not here to tell you one approach is better than another or criticize what you have done. You do what works for you and your little one. But we are here to say that, whichever you chose, bear with your baby (and yourself) as you tackle this giant milestone. Don’t let the pressure of those around you, an impending trip, or a summer camp requirement stress you out. It will happen. As moms who have jumped this hurdle twice, we promise you it will.
We are pretty confident that you won’t find a mother who will miss those poop explosions or trying to wipe, change, and hold their little one down with one hand while searching for a clean place to change their diaper with the other. But you will find many moms (us included) who will mourn the passage of time. Saying goodbye to diapers symbolizes that next phase. It symbolizes their growth and ours, both as mothers and as individuals. In many ways, no matter how dirty it is, it is the end of an era.
While that era may have been soiled and smelly, there was also something special about it. So, while we eagerly wave goodbye to diapers, don’t rush what’s to come. As a wise mother once said, “No one ever goes to college in diapers, so don’t stress about potty training.”