Ok, we did it! My oldest is potty trained. At 3.5 years old and after many battle of the wills, she decided she was ready and that was that. To say that I didn't beat myself up on a regular basis over my child who is quite intelligent not being potty trained would be an understatement. It was a daily battle not feeling like a failure every time I changed a Pull-Up.
Unfortunately, social media was no help. "Potty Train in 3 Days," let me tell you, I tried every trick, bribe, method and timing in the book. And, although I have some amazing mom's in my life who continually encouraged me, reminding me that her not using the potty isn't a direct reflection on my parenting, there were a few (whom I sincerely hope unintentionally) weren't so kind in their comments or looks.
What I learned through the potty training process with my daughter is that ultimately what matters most is who you are, not what you do. This is something my husband and I strive to teach and model for our children, that their character is far more important then their skill set. There have been countless times that my toddler's character shone through and made more proud than any poop or pee on a potty could.
The same goes for you, at the end of the day, many won't care or remember what you can do, but they will remember how you made them feel. Do you look someone in the eyes and actually listen to what they're saying? Are you generous, more than fiscally, with your time, your words, your actions? Are you kind? Are you patient?
There is definitely a time and a place to let you skill set shine and I believe we've been gifted with talents for a purpose; but perhaps we put too much emphasis on the talent sometimes? In the parenting world we love to show off our offsprings latest learned skill, ensuring they're reaching those crucial milestones. And yes, milestones should be celebrated and new skills practiced, as should the budding character of our wee ones.
If you're feeling pressed down and like you don't measure up because of something as trivial as potty training, let me remind you that who you are far outshines what you do and in the end it always will.