Mixed Mess Parenting Personal

Last Day at Eye Level + Nighttime Toilet Training

This post has been sitting in my… wait for it… drafts for way too long!

It’s been terribly hot this summer — where’s my summer breeze to make me feel fine? — but just last night, we had a strong thunderstorm. It was the same as the thunderstorm we had a couple of Saturdays ago where our electricity even got cut off for 5 hours.  And for the first time ever, our home office flooded (a little bit). Thank God it occurred to me to check the office just when the leaking started. (God has been giving me small reminders lately that went on to reveal bigger things. Thank you, Lord!)

I actually meant to post this almost a full month ago. For time reference, Yuri’s last day at Eye Level was on April 8th, and he got fully nighttime toilet-trained on April 13th.

Last Day at Eye Level

There’s nothing about Eye Level that both Yuri and I don’t love. Honest. I already made a proclamation of love here so I won’t go into details anymore. I just want to say that Yuri entered the enrichment centre literally illiterate (does that make sense? haha). Seriously. He just turned four then and before that, I didn’t think it was important to pressure him into learning how to read and write. After all, he wouldn’t be three forever.

(I have nothing against parents whose children were taught to read and write earlier. Different families, different priorities.)

By the time he turned four, though, I knew our time was up: he needed to learn how to read and write. When I enrolled Yuri to Eye Level’s English program May of 2016, he didn’t even know how to hold a pencil. After assessing him, we started at a pre-literacy level, where we even struggled with writing lines! I loved teaching Yuri, but for some reason, teaching him how to draw straight lines, crooked lines, and curves brought me at my wit’s end.

But after persevering, both in the centre and at home, suddenly Yuri was zooming through writing letters. We had to learn the correct strokes (I was lax at first but later learned to abide by the rules — penmanship does matter). At first, he got B’s and C’s on his booklets, but later on, they became all A’s. After several months, he was already on to reading and forming simple words.

From not knowing how to hold a pencil, he’s already writing and reading and spelling words.I know this is in no way an extraordinary feat, but for us, who started the year illiterate, this was amazing progress. And I credit much of it to Eye Level. The one-on-one hands-on sessions as well as the engaging activities and exercises helped a lot. 

Last day at Eye Level today 😭#sepanx

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However, Job and I, even though we are 101% satisfied with Eye Level, decided to pull Yuri out after 10 months of being with the learning centre. This is plainly because Yuri is about to enter formal schooling for the very first time in his life. We felt like we all needed a break from any sort of pressure and just focus on resting and transitioning to school life this summer. We didn’t even enrol him to any summer class this year. I also want Yuri to be able to focus on schooling alone when it starts. By the time he adjusts to our new routines, we may come back to Eye Level. This time, we will be going for Math instead of English. Who knows?

Nighttime Toilet Training Saga

My mother has been nagging me about this for so long. You see, even though Yuri got successfully potty-trained before he turned 2, he has still been wearing pull-ups at night. I don’t know; I just felt like he wasn’t ready yet. Each morning, he wakes up with a full pull-up and he does pee a lot at night. In the early days, I tried having him wear his cloth diapers at night. But barely an hour into sleep, he wakes up because it’s already full of pee. So I just shrugged nighttime toilet training off and waited until he was ready.

I knew he was ready a couple of weeks before he turned five. He still wakes up with a wet pull-up but that’s because he pees upon waking up. It’s also the perfect timing because it’s summer and he pees a lot less during the summer. But then, we travelled and I felt like it wasn’t the best time to toilet train. We were sleeping in a hotel room on a hotel bed, after all! I just didn’t want to risk it.

Heels over head 😂

A post shared by Marie Angeli Laxa (@maanlaxa) on

When we got back from our vacation, I waited for the next long weekend to come. It happened to be the weekend of the Holy Week. Our first night of no-pull ups happened on the night of Maundy Thursday. I just followed the basic pieces of advice: not giving too much liquid at night and peeing before bedtime. That’s it.

And it was a success! I didn’t get to sleep much that night, though. I was so paranoid he would wet the bed so I kept waking up to check. Nonetheless, he woke up with the bed fully dry and the first thing he did was pee. Teehee. It really does make a difference to wait until the child is ready.

My takeaway from this mothering experience? There’s no competition when it comes to nighttime toilet training. After all, it’s a bodily function that is not easily controllable. We might have used up more pull ups than kids who got toilet trained earlier, but it’s okay. There’s no use pressuring a child who just couldn’t keep his bed dry because he can’t help it. Because I decided to wait until I was sure Yuri was ready, he didn’t have to feel pressured or frustrated. Because we waited, nighttime toilet training for us was super easy, stress-free, and tear-free!

Actually, come to think of it, this can be applied to teaching literacy, too! In other words, raising a child shouldn’t be a competition.

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  • Reply Michi May 10, 2017 at 10:36 am

    True, there is no competition in raising a child. Though minsan nakakapressure pag nakita mo yung ibang kids na wala ng diaper na suot before two years old. But it is really best to wait na maging ready ang bata. 🙂

  • Reply Melisa Sanchez May 10, 2017 at 11:35 am

    My Zd boy takot na takot sa thunder, kahit kunting kulog lang. Good for Yuri na nag iimprove na ang writing nya wag lang mamadaliin at matutunan nya din yan sa tamang panahon. WHEW! You know what sis, my Zd tinuruan kuna sya about toileting. 2 yrs old sya, pag mag pee punta ng cr, pag mag poo punta ng cr at nagagawa nya ng almost one month pero pagtulog sya di nya talaga mapipigilan ang pag ihi. Pero okay lang sakin. Di naman minamadali ang mga bagay bagay e. Aja sis!

    • Reply Maan May 10, 2017 at 8:33 pm

      Actually he writes and reads a lot na talaga! Ang galing nga eh. No prodding from me at all. I learned na if you let them learn at their own pace, they learn things better because they don’t feel forced 🙂

  • Reply Berlin | Momi Berlin May 10, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    We have a 29-month-old boy and he changes diaper often now. He loves to pee and poo alot this summer. Perhaps because it’s too hot, he drinks a lot and whenever there’s food, he eats a lot, too. I can’t remember anymore how we toilet trained our three grown up boys. I can’t even remember how they learned to read and write. Perhaps too much lead and anesthesia? Anyway, I plan to toilet train our little boy now as diapers are so expensive. And I guess he would be more comfortable peeing in the comforts of our cr than on his diaper. Thanks for the timely reminder.

  • Reply dory May 10, 2017 at 8:10 pm

    I can feel you, sometimes I am pressured too but what I did is just always keep in mind that the right time for my son will come

  • Reply EINz May 16, 2017 at 10:16 am

    I love the line “different families, different priorities.” Also, it wasn’t right to compete because kids have their own pace and unique strength. My youngest is now 3yrs. old and she’s only 2 1/2 when I enrolled her at Pre Nursery level. More on social development lang sana, because she’s very shy, but was surprised to know that there’s ranking of students and encountered making it a bog deal on scores, assignments, abilities, etc. For, 3 yrs old? REALLY?!

    Well, that made me decide to transfer her to more healthy environment. Haha. I don’t want to pressure her on academics/ awards but let her focus more on emotional intelligence and independence. Oh well, I can say that bonus na lang ang high grades and I don’t want her to feel less and be compared to others.

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