In the potty training days of July 2013, I will admit I resorted to “rewards,” something I hadn’t really pulled out of my parenting toolkit before that. Big M would receive one gummy bear or one Smartie any time she tried to go pee on the potty. If she actually peed, she got two.
Now, let me tell you a little something about Big M … she is not (or definitely was not) very extrinsically motivated. It’s actually one of the things I love about her. However, she did seem intrigued by the gummy bear / Smartie reward system I was employing. And to be honest, it worked … for peeing. Pooping has always been another story.
Big M still has random pooping “accidents” in her Pull Up after her nap (though they’ve become more and more rare as of late). Her motivation for pooping on the potty? Popcorn. Of course, over time, the gummy bear and Smartie reward system has faded out, but the popcorn has stuck. Every time she poops on the pot, Big M talks about popcorn. Big M really likes popcorn, especially with a Disney classic.
Well, as her bowel movements on the pot become more and more regular, so have our servings of popcorn. Being a little anal about the nutritional value of the foods my children eat, this popcorn thing was sort of getting to me, especially the sodium and fat content in microwave popcorn. So today, I bought some old fashioned popping corn and dug out the traditional air popper, and Big M had her first feed of very lightly buttered and very lightly salted “real” popcorn. No complaints. No questions asked. Total satisfaction (and delight in watching it pop). And I felt SO much better about her eating “poop”corn. Definitely, my feel good as a mommy moment of the day.