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Sunday, November 30, 2008

"We cuddle and kiss ourselves!"

I haven't worked since November 7th and its been glorious.  I return to work this Friday and I'm very sad that my wonderful time with my daughter is drawing to a close.  I only work for eight days and due to Christmas hiatus, I'll have another long lay-off between shoot dates but my time with my daughter has been so valuable, I can't help but feel saddened by my return to work.  

First of all, I really enjoyed being off for both Eliza's birthday and Thanksgiving.  Eliza had a wonderful birthday and Thanksgiving weekend has been nice, though very exhausting.  Eliza's school was closed this past Wednesday for Thanksgiving break and Eliza woke up on Wednesday and asked for underwear.  So my little girl is officially deep into potty training.

Up to now, potty training has been nearly non-existent she's been so resistant to the idea of it.  Though she loved the potty training books, she slammed down the toilet seat lid and refused to go at school.  Attempts to force her into it by letting her run around diaper-free resulted in her holding it in for as long as six hours.  It seems that attending a class where everyone is already potty trained except for Eliza made matters worse.  The best they could get from her in school is she'll agree to sit on the potty, immediately wipe herself and then flush the toilet.  

Wednesday rolled around, school was closed, and suddenly Eliza asked to wear underwear.  She peed and pooped like an old pro.  Her eyes lit up and her smiled covered the width of her face whenever she sat on the potty and achieved "success."  I called C to tell him about our daughter's sudden development and we gleefully applauded her newest achievement.  I put her on the phone to tell him about our day and she told him about the potty, then said, "I'm with Mama today and we cuddle and kiss ourselves."  I think she meant to say "kiss each other" but I still found it to be just about the cutest thing I'd ever heard.  

Thursday (Thanksgiving) continued with underwear but after a big pooping accident, she cautiously asked for diapers.   I gently refused and the rest of the day progressed without accident but as the weekend continued, her desire to use the potty has been sporadic.  She's been in and out of diapers over the past two days.  So far today, she's both used the potty and and peed and pooped in a diaper.  

Any magical ideas I had about her training quickly once she decided she was ready have vanished.  I see with this child I have a long road ahead of me.  I'm sending her to school tomorrow in underwear and discuss it with her teachers.  Unfortunately, Eliza sees pull-ups as a diaper and if she's in a pull-up, she'll just go in the diaper as opposed to even attempting to make it to the potty.  Since she had so much success the first two days, I think her refusal to go diaper free has more to do with laziness/distractions than an inability to go.  

But I'm nervous that returning to work will set her back.  I am really ready for her to be out of diapers, primarily so she can start ballet class with her schoolmates come January.  

Eliza also graduated from the crib to a big girl bed on Black Friday.  So far, it's been okay but she refuses to nap.  Whether this is due to the bed or the fact that my stepchildren have been here all weekend is anyone's guess.  I've really enjoyed hosting Eliza's siblings this weekend.  Eliza worships her teenaged sister Katie and its been a real joy to watch she and Katie have pretend picnics and walk like penguins.  Eliza loves their being here so much, its worth the sleeplessness that often accompanies their visits.  

Our apartment is large, loft-life space so Eliza doesn't have a room separate from the living room, just an alcove.  I think its also tough for my stepchildren, particularly Katie who is 16, to sleep on fold-outs in the living room.  Basically, for three full days, Katie had no privacy or time to herself though she's handled it all like a real trouper.  As much as we enjoyed the weekend, I think Katie was happy to have a tutoring session to return to on Sunday and Eliza was relieved, though sad, to see them leave Sunday night.  Sunday evening was all about Eliza and Mama and I think it comforts her to have the quiet routine that goes with an empty apartment.  She was in bed fast asleep by 8:15.

We are officially moving out of this enormous one bedroom at the end of the year.  There are several possibilities, all smaller than this place but I don't care.  Though I might have less closet space and a crappier kitchen (95% of New York kitchens suck), my daughter has never had her own room.  The fact that its taken C this long to wake up to the fact that she needs a room just shows you how responsive he is to other people's needs.

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