-- Erik Quinn (June 5, 2009)
Erik is now allowing me to lead him to the bathroom and lift him up onto the toilet after he gets up some mornings. This occasionally requires me to sing, dance, and basically perform the world's dorkiest one-woman show, but the results are more than promising. If there's one thing I have learned about WS, it's that distraction is sometimes key while performing difficult tasks like this, as it wards off cranky fits. He has resisted the whole toilet training process with gusto up to this point.
He remains relatively passive in many activities of daily living, and this is no exception. His balance is not dependable, and his motor skills are lacking, making toileting extremely difficult for him. However, he will aim to avoid making a mess, flush the toilet once I lift him off of it, and place his hands in the sink to allow me to wash them. Strangely, he doesn't seem to understand how to perform the motion of rubbing both hands together to get them clean, although he moves his fingers around in the air a bit and attempts to go through the motions he knows he is supposed to do. No amount of coaxing, teaching, or encouragement seems to bring things like this into his realm of understanding, although I go through the motions I am expected to as a parent as well, hoping it will sink in. Only time seems to bring resolution to some of his most basic challenges.
In the meantime, I watch other children his age or younger use the bathroom completely independently, including easily manipulating their clothing. As the children around us grow, I realize how far we have yet to go.
I try not to let it get to me. I really do.
I am an expert at changing diapers now, as I have been doing this for almost five years. I would be lying, though, if I said that doing this isn't horribly depressing. It is for this reason that the little steps we take forward are very rewarding indeed. We will get there with time.
It all comes down to being patient.