Tuesday 27 January 2009

Ads is naughty

First, I get a call from his Ms Pam at school, telling me that he has soiled himself and can I please come and clean him up (the teachers don't clean the kids if they have an accident, and who can blame them?!!) This was at 11 am. I rushed to school (a 15 min drive), thinking that this accident was actually a blessing in disguise, and maybe Ads would learn a lesson from this incident. But, far from being repentant and ashamed, I found him coolly standing in a corner of the bathroom, examining something on the wall with great interest.
I'm a little (okay more than a little) fed up of this constant anxiety over when he'll do potty, whether he will wet/soil himself, should I put him in training pants (just in case) or regular underwear.....frankly, considering how early I started potty-training Ads (some would say because of it), I thought I would be home and dry at this point. But, apparently not. I am now totally and utterly convinced that a child will be potty-trained when he is ready and willing, and not a day earlier. This goes against our theory and practice in India, where a child begins potty training at 12-18 months (sometimes even earlier) and seems to be out of diapers by age 2 or thereabouts. With Ads, the problem has been an unwillingness to learn and lack of motivation to be potty-trained. He doesn't think he gains anything by it (he's right!) and he is incorruptible (we can't bribe him with candy or other treats!). So yes, he doesn't wear diapers any more. He goes to the loo when he needs to go (but most times I just nag him till he goes). But I have a sneaking feeling that we, his parents, are well and truly potty-trained and not him!
I brought him home a little earlier this afternoon, thanks to afore-mentioned episode. The class has a short period of outdoor play before they go home and I stood in the empty classroom, watching him through the window. The school has recently procured a shiny new ride-on firetruck, and he was sitting at the steering wheel. The firetruck was being pushed by four other kids. Ads had a rapturous expression on his face. His turn over, he got off to make place for another kid at the wheel and himself stood on a sort of platform attached to the rear of the truck. Watching him play so happily with his friends (happiness caused not by presence of friends but by presence of firetruck!) made my heart melt. I wanted to scold him for not telling his teachers that he needed to use the bathroom, but I didn't have the heart to.
After lunch, he started tearing up a newspaper into small pieces and stuffed them into a paper bag. I think he was playing at being a garbage collector. The front page of the newspaper had a photo of Barack Obama taking the oath. Ads separated Obama's head from his body and said "Obama in junk". Later in the afternoon, we heard him go into the bathroom and then the sound of the toilet flushing. I was just congratulating myself on his having gone to the loo without me nagging him when he came out holding his trash bag, which I noticed with horror, was half-empty. I rushed to the bathroom, to find a huge bunch of newspaper scraps, floating in the toilet bowl. I don't know how much he had managed to flush down but I made him fish out whatever was floating in there. Hopefully he won't do it again; I know how he hates getting his hands icky.
Later still, he was draping a long string, a whistle, a toy handbag and my mobile charger over the back of one of the dining room chairs. I asked him what he was doing and he said that all the "wires" (i.e. the string, whistle etc) were parts of a bomb and when he turned a dial (the dial being that of Y's rocker), the bomb would go off DOOM! Where does he pick up all this stuff?

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