Talking About The 3Ps

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
Looking back on our first child's potty training experiences.

Submitted: March 18, 2008

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Submitted: March 18, 2008

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Like most people, I remember the first time I did certain things as a kid. I remember the first time I went to the movies – I saw King Kong vs. Godzilla (I think I was the only person rooting for Godzilla). I remember the first baseball game I went to. I remember lots of things. But what I don’t remember is the first time that I…well...okay I’ll just say it…the first time I used the potty. But I am convinced that my children will absolutely remember the first time that each of them used the potty because of all the commotion. Now that our son is 5 and our daughter is almost 4, that historic day seems like ancient history. If I had the proverbial dollar for every conversation my wife and I have had about poop, I would be writing this article from some villa in Monaco. Before my wife and I had kids our conversations covered many subjects, from culture to sports to business to world affairs. But with the arrival of our first child, followed by another one 19 months later, suddenly the subject of the 3Ps – Pee, Poop, and Potty - became fodder for daily conversation, sometimes multiple times a day. Now mind you I understand the importance of this subject, but somehow I would have intrinsically thought this subject was off-limits during meals. Yet, there we would be, sitting at the dinner table, when at some point between the salad and main course, my wife would report on our kids’ 3P events of the day. What became even more incredulous to me was that after a while I was the one who initiated the 3P conversation!
 
Looking back, my first confrontation with the 3Ps occurred shortly after the birth of our first child with the initiation rite for fathers – changing a diaper – performed
masterfully I must say, right there in the hospital and with no instruction manual and no previous experience. Of course the biggest source of accomplishment in the 3Ps arena came on my first road trip with my son. You fathers know what I mean. I remember the day vividly. There I proudly stood in front of the men’s room of a department store, my son in my arms, having just changed his diaper in a public bathroom, on a cold slab of plastic affixed to the wall like a worn-out Murphy bed, with broken straps, and hinges that appeared to be not strong enough to hold a small bag of cashews, let alone my son. They call it a diaper deck, although I’m sure its original intention was to hold only diapers themselves, not human babies actually wearing diapers. No easy task, changing a diaper while your son is wiggling like a worm on a fish hook as you balance the diaper bag, the disposal wipe, the diaper, and a plastic bag in which to stuff the non-recyclable material my son had just deposited. But there I stood, wiping the sweat off my brow and announcing to my waiting and anxious wife that my first diaper change away from the comfort and privacy of our home was an unqualified success, accomplished with great speed and alacrity. And best of all my son had not fallen off the diaper deck and broken his head, which of course I had feared would happen after I took one look at the flimsy apparatus. 
 
This event has been followed by hundreds of conversations surrounding the 3Ps, especially in the months leading up to each child’s history-making P-Day – the day of reckoning…the day that, in each household where it occurs, parents shout at the top of their lungs (shouting is obligatory)…fill in the name”________pooped in the potty!”
 
For us, immediately following The Event we raised a celebratory toast to the little tike at a fine dining establishment frequented by 3 year-olds. And in front of friends and relatives (they must be close friends and relatives) we described all the details surrounding the blessed event: time of day, location…and quantity. Now, do you think my wife and I can go back to talking about something else… like the rematch between King Kong and Godzilla? Naah.
 
 


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