So my kids have made it past two major developmental milestones: Rollie is peeing standing up, and Elsa is crawling.
Now, taken seperately, these two things are celebratory. Finally, I don't have to hear Elsa scream in frustration, trapped in her figure-four leg-lock, unable to travel the thirty inches to reach the toy she desperately wants. She can just get up on her hands and knees and go. And Rollie, my darling son, has discovered the unadulterated joy of aiming his stream of pee to obliterate a square of TP in the toilet. The next step is actually letting me know he has to go without me asking every five seconds. Oh happy day that will be.
But when these two accomplishments are melded together, it spells complete and utter disaster.
The scenario this morning was: Rollie tearing through the house, hollering that he wants a diaper--my cue to usher him into the bathroom.
Me: Come on, Rollie, let's go pee-pee.
Rollie: No, I want a Diaper!
Me: You just need to use the potty.
Me (employing the brilliant method of offering up two choices to trick a kid into thinking he gets any kind of say in his life...usually works well except that oftentimes Rollie will still opt for Door Number Three: His Way): Do you want to sit or stand to go pee-pee?
Rollie (who thankfully realizes this is not a drill): I want to stand.
Yay. He's not going to pee on the floor this round. I strategically position his plastic potty chair in front of the toilet so he can stand on it, help him with his shorts and Thomas undies, toss a crumpled tissue into the bowl, and hold him in place, his belly protruding forward so that he himself cannot see his wiener, only the stream of pee emitting from it and splashing below.
(Side note: Yes, I realize that I still call a Penis a Wiener. I don't know when I will finally behave like the 31-year-old woman I actually am and start using the anatomically correct terminology. I think I will also have a problem saying Vulva, but I'll worry about that later. Much, much later).
So just as I'm feeling all smug and triumphant, like maybe, just maybe, I've bought Rollie his last box of size 6 diapers, I hear the little smack smack smacking of baby hands on ceramic tile.
I turn and see Elsa, chubby-faced and smiling, making a bee-line for us.
"No, no, Elsa," I say. Because I already know where she's headed.
She pauses only long enough to smile even wider before continuing onward.
"Don't come over here, Elsa," I say.
Smack smack smack.
"Elsa. Stop, Honey."
Smack smack smack. Man, she's quick.
"What's Baby Elsa doing?" Rollie asks, though he's still engrossed with peeing on the tissue.
"She's not listening to Mommy," I say. "Elsa, no, no."
By now Elsa has crawled behind me and is now on her hands and knees, looking up at the toilet looming above her. She contemplates it for a moment, then lifts one doughy hand up and grasps the rim.
Keep in mind that I'm still holding onto Rollie, who for some reason doesn't stand under his own power when he pees. It's like helping someone who's heavily intoxicated. If I let him go, he'll pee all over the place.
Elsa seems to know my dilemma, because she now reaches up with her other hand and pulls herself onto her knees, watching with great interest as Rollie continues to go. The pee stream is inches away from her curious little face. One move on his part and she'll get a golden shower. Maybe that'll teach her.
"Elsaaaaa," I lower my voice to mimic Jeff's--one discouraging word from him and Elsa is usually reduced to a quivering pile of baby-fat.
But instead of bursting into tears, Elsa leans forward and sticks her hand right into the toilet.
"Aaah!" I shriek, releasing Rollie and diving for Elsa.
"Momma!" Rollie teeters on the potty seat for a second before standing up straight, pee running down his leg and onto the potty seat.
I lug a squirming Elsa to the sink. At least I'm able to wash her hands before she decides to put them in her mouth. Sometimes you've gotta rejoice in the little victories.