Amanda invited Léon over today to help teach potty to his wee cousin Gordy, 3 months his junior. Gordy had had his first nappy-free day yesterday so Amanda is fairly housebound - there are only so many people who want you visiting with a nappy-free, un-house-trained toddler, there aren't many places you want to drive to either with a nappiless child in a carseat.
We arrived at 11 and things didn't start too well - both had got up too early so were overtired. We got half an hour of 'mineminemine' and 'gimmegimmegimme', with a bit of crying and stamping thrown in. Half an hour in, things calmed down and they decided to be best buddies as usual. Phew! Gordy had used the potty a few times when his mum had asked him to before our arrival, but after, playing with Léon was too much fun to bother with potties.
Around 12, Léon asked to go to the toilet so we thought this was a great opportunity to show Gordy what to do. Léon did a pee and a poo. We asked Gordy if he wanted a look - so he looked down the toilet, and seemed impressed. Amanda asked if he wanted to try: No! Gordy walked to the living room and promptly peeed all over the floor. I tried to keep Léon from walking in the swamp while Amanda mopped it up.
After lunch Léon managed another pee and poo, again I showed Gordy, again he peeed his pants! While Amanda and I chatted in the kitchen the boys played in Gordy's bedroom. Amanda went to check after two minutes. I heard her say - oh you've had a wee accident, don't worry. I assumed it was another pee but it was a poo. Amanda suggested to Léon he leave the room while she cleaned the carpet. Léon drove out on Gordy's tractor, Amanda waved him goodbye - maintaining an amazing level of calm - I remember potty-training stress all too well from January. Anna started crying for milk. Then Amanda realized Gordy hadn't done one poo, he'd done two poos - the one she was picking up and the one Léon had just driven over with the tractor and was squelching into Gordy's green bedroom carpet, the patterned - hard-to-see-poo-on - hall carpet, the wooden living room floor and the beautiful, expensive hand-woven wool rug (also various rusty shades) in the living room. Of course the offending tractor was immediately flung in the shower room and both Gordy and Léon's feet were checked for poo - negative. By now a lesser being would have been hysterical and on the floor but Amanda ran around with a basin of soapy water while I removed chunks with baby wipes and left lego blocks as markers on the rugs denoting where needed shampooing. Anna started screaming for milk. I sat down to feed her two minutes. Amanda finally finished the task in hand, stood up and walked into the hall in time to see Léon driving up the hall on the tractor he had retrieved in the shower room while Amanda crawled about on all fours. The tractor was re-flung in the shower room, the carpet was re-shampooed, the boys socks were re-checked for poo.
When I left at 2-15pm, after just 3 hours, there was a pile of 4, maybe 5 pairs of wet pants, a 25 metre trail of shampooed carpet and a very authentic looking tractor, complete with manure-covered wheels, two happy boys and two very stressed, tired mums.
Amanda must have been so glad Léon came round to share his wisdom with Gordy!