So, against the backdrop of trying to get the Monster toilet trained this week – an activity that, as you’ve all been aware, is going kind of in fits and starts – I’ve been spending a good amount of time with the kids.
It’s been a weird week for all of us – for me, it’s meant an entire week that I’ve not been working for the first time in a long while. For the Monster, though, it’s a break in his carefully managed schedule that was a very bad experiment in chaos.
I’ve mentioned in the past that the Monster’s been good about his bedtime. Without having the structure of his normal week, he’s suddenly become very demanding about staying up as late as he prefers, watching Sesame Street ad nauseum. In the last three nights, this has ended up finally with my throwing him over the shoulder like a sack of potatoes and hauling him off to bed (which generally ends with him in bed and with him only whining for a few minutes before falling asleep). Add to this that he’s suddenly gotten very fixated on what he’s wearing, and it just entails a lot of bedtime fights.
It’s also been a good opportunity to work on his verbal structures. Since we’re around him constantly, we’re trying to emphasize gerunds and variations to his verbs – “Can I have something to drink?” or “I want a drink, please” instead of “Can I have a drink, please” as are the usual constructs. It’s not quite sticking as much, but he’s been changing it up a little bit at least.
I’ve been trying to expand what we have him doing for himself – when it’s time for a drink, for instance, I’m having him come into the kitchen and help me get what we need to get him settled. He’s gotten very good at consistently following one-step instructions, and can sometimes follow two step instructions… which is progress.
And, back on the toileting front, he is giving better indications of when he needs to go, if we’re paying attention. It’s almost never the ‘I need to go to the bathroom’ that they’re working on getting him to use, but he’s either going to the gate/door of the room he’s in, or doing a variation on the bathroom-dance. He’s even, once, gone to the bathroom all on his own and at least taken off his briefs without saying something to anyone… so there’s hope.