Potty Training and Pacifiers: Where My Priorities Lie

Recently I took my son, Louis 21 months, to the dentist at the suggestion of my pediatrician. We brush his teeth regularly during bath time, but otherwise dental hygiene is just a fun game to him right now. I know all of you dental hygienists are cringing, but you’ll come to realize I’m just trying to help with job security. The dentist had all kinds of words for me about how I need to wean him off of the pacifier immediately because the strength of his tongue is weakening which leads to poor sleep and other issues. 

First, if his lack of tongue strength were the cure for his (re: my) lack of sleep you know good and well I would have had him in the gym working that tongue like none other. Secondly, I am doing my very best to grow a business, nourish my child, grow my family, and spend time with loved ones during a WORLD PANDEMIC. No, I will not fight my child to take away the comfort that brings sanity and quiet to our house, but I will find another dentist. My mother-in-law has a wonderful saying I’ve come to live by when the milestones get challenging, “they don’t go to college like that.” She raised three successful children, one of which I married, so I think she knows a thing or two about getting through the leaps. My priorities are keeping him, and us as a family, together and moving forward. 

My mom got my son a training potty for Christmas. Louis has shown some interest in it, more like a new toy rather than actually interested in how it works or what it does. With the best intentions, my mom has asked regularly if we started potty training or suggested we take him to sit on the potty. I have no interest in it, and kind of dread the idea right now, so I can only imagine how disinterested Louis is if I feel this way. When the time is right, I have full faith that he will want to potty train, but until then we aren’t taking that leap either.

My ability to manage and be consistent with how I show up for my family, business, and myself has reached maximum capacity. Being able to wean Louis off of pacifiers and potty train him would be more for the notches in my ‘accomplished mother’ belt over the fact that he isn’t ready for it, and neither am I. As a first time mom I have doubted so many things. Many nights have been spent worrying if I’m making the right choice about formula, diaper type, school choice, and all the other things. I’ve decided these milestones, or weaning ourselves past them, aren’t going to be stressors. I am standing firm following my mom intuition to wait on my child and my ability to give these leaps the attention they deserve. When the time is right weaning off the paci and potty training will take priority. 

The resilience my son has shown in the face of my fears has only strengthened my faith and confidence in my God-given mothering intuition. Even though I only have one child I am certain that all kids are different. When Louis and I are ready we will make the leap to drop the paci and potty train and until then my priorities will remain the same: have a happy & healthy family.


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