1. Your timeline means nothing.
You may be completely done with diapers -- The cost! The smell! -- but until your kiddo is ready to entertain the idea of going on the potty, you're stuck changing diapers.
2. There's no one perfect method.
Some kids are driven by the simple thrill of trying something new. Others require elaborate sticker charts, bribery and cheering. Adjust accordingly.
3. You'll find yourself talking "potty" more than you ever thought possible.
Not just to your little one, but to your partner, friends and family, too. Maybe even strangers. "Little Johnny just pooped on the potty!" will become your catchphrase, at least for a little while, like it or not.
4. It's a total rush when your kid finally goes on the potty.
The thrill of a successful trip to the potty rivals that of your first kiss, getting a work promotion and winning the lottery -- combined.
5. Right when you think your child is "trained," they'll regress.
You think changing a poopy diaper is bad? Try cleaning up poop that has soaked through your kid's underwear and is slowly but surely dripping down her leg onto your kitchen floor. (Tip: Strip them right there on the spot. Picking them up in an attempt to rush them to the bathroom only leaves a dripping poo trail. Which naturally your family pet will run through.)
6. They will use it to control you.
Manipulative or not (I'm on the fence), your kid's bladder or bowel will somehow magically need emptying as soon as you get them in their snowsuit. Or buckled in the car. Or when you sit down to eat. Never mind that you asked them five times if they had to use the potty first, and they emphatically assured you they did not.
7. The frustration, exercises in patience and setbacks are totally worth it. Especially when you see the look of pride and excitement on your child's face when they master going on the potty.