Hand Preference

We were at the school having lunch with Tornado S because he was Student of the Week.  Tornado S got to draw a poster about himself, be lineleader all week, be the teacher’s helper, do show and tell, and also get to have his parents have lunch with him.  To make it extra special, we always bring a kid’s meal of some sort.

Their Father: Look.  He’s eating with his right hand.

Me: Yes.  He’s been using his right more, but he is still switching.

Teacher: Oh, he’s still switching.

She looked over at the other two teachers.  They all nodded agreement.

Teacher: But.  Tornado S’s working very hard with strengthening those hand muscles.  Cutting with scissors.  Holding a tissue as he writes.  (Pause.)  Um.  What?  Um.  What hand does he use when he. . . um . . . when he um . . . . What does he use when he’s in the bathroom?

Being surrounded by talkative, smart, attentive kindergarteners didn’t help, but I had a feeling that even without the kids, this teacher would have a hard time articulating.  She didn’t raise boys.  At least, not boys like mine.

Me: (A smile.  A raised eye brow.) He doesn’t.

The teacher looked startled.  Her facial expression spoke for her.  He doesn’t?

Me: Nope.  He just stands there and (I raised my hands to head level.) lets it fly.

Teacher: Oh Go-.  Oh my.

Me: Yup.

Teacher: Well, you know.  They have hand preference with that too.  With holding it for the bathroom.  And.  Um.  And.  You know.  (Breathe)  When he gets a little holder, he’ll prefer a hand to um . . . to . . . that thing that starts with an “M.”

If I didn’t like this woman so much, I would have acted like I didn’t know.  It would have been an entertaining five minutes.  Or if I were more evil.

Me:  We saw Gattaca. We know.

Though that reminds me.

New penis rule:



We are the Champions!


Before I had kids, there were MANY things about motherhood I did not believe.  I was sure I wouldn’t have enough patience.  But I found it came from the same bottomless well as my love.  I thought I would have to be addicted to some kind of upper to have the energy I needed to take care of many children, much less one single toddler.  It turned out that youthful energy I channeled to play pranks and stay up all night writing, diverted nicely to parenting.  I knew for a fact pacifiers would never be used in my house.  Evan had it in his mouth two minutes after we left the hospital as I panicked over his crying.  While I would be happy over their victories, I would never be ecstatic, jumping for joy, victory dancing over their victories, much less something so insignificant as pooping in the potty.  I’m just glad my husband has no idea where are video camera is.


That’s right.  This weekend Evan pooped in his potty ALL BY HIMSELF. 


For months now, after Evan would run to the potty and pee, pull up his pants, wash his hands, he never would attempt pooping.  He demanded a diaper.  The mere suggestion of using the potty would send him into hysterics.  I consulted books, shows, internet resources, and even the blogosphere.  (Thanks again for everyone’s advice on that.)  Eventually I settled for the classic mantra of all toddler habits, “He won’t be doing this when he’s in school.”  While I seriously doubted the mantra, my mother assured me that if he still needed a diaper in first grade, he would just hold it until he was home to ask.  I feared she might just be right, and all I asked from Evan was that he did his business in the bathroom, near the potty, since I couldn’t even get him to sit on the potty with his diaper.


But last week after a stomach bug, Evan had a horrible case of the runs that just exploded out of his diaper.  The poor kid was so upset over the mess.  I didn’t blame him.  If I was disgusted looking at it, how would I feel with it on me?  Evan’s answer was to not poop. 


After two days, Evan’s body decided to mutiny, and Evan refused a diaper.  All day we kept going back to the potty, sitting, reading, trying to teach him to push.  (Do you know how hard it is to teach someone to push?)  Mid-way through the afternoon, my husband thought enough was enough and got out a diaper.  Evan panicked, refusing the diaper in the same manner as he had once refused the potty.  As dinner rolled around, I began to wonder if there were any laxatives for preschoolers.  Though I knew if Evan would just eat some damn vegetables, we wouldn’t have this problem.


As I washed the dinner dishes, Evan came running into the kitchen.  “I WENT POOP IN MY POTTY!”  I ran with him to look, and now I understood why Kate Gosselin (from Jon and Kate Plus 8) took a picture of the first bowel movement of all her kids.  He was excited.  I was excited.  Daddy was excited.  Evan reminded me of all the promises of the day.  The Happy Meal.  The Grandma Candy.  Uncle M was actually on his way for movie night, bringing with him Grandma Candy or otherwise known as Cinnamon Jolly Rangers.  The proud Daddy buckled Evan in to get the Happy Meal with chicken nuggets, instead of the corn beef I had made.  It was a beautiful moment.


Later that evening, Evan’s body reminded him that it had been TWO DAYS.  This time Evan wanted a diaper; this time we refused.  I was exiled from the bathroom, but Daddy was allowed to stay.  A few minutes later, Evan rushed out to tell us the good news; while my husband returned to ask what to do with the waste.  I thought it was obvious.  Poor Uncle M was dragged into the bathroom to see Evan’s excellent work.  I squeezed around to see why it was so hard to dump in the toilet.


Holy Crap!  How did one tiny body make that much?  One tiny body that doesn’t even eat that much.  Yuck!


Now I have to just convince Evan that if he would just eat some fruit and vegetables, pooping wouldn’t be so damn hard.  V is for Victory.  V is for Vegetables.  Now eat them!


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