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I swear, once you start to put your baby on the potty, you'll never turn back. I have bought a ton of different types of diapers: custom cloth from San Francisco's East Bay Jessica
, cheapish cloth diapers from Green Mountain Diapers
, biodegradable diapers
from Lucky's down the street. And, nothing compares to NO diapers at all!
When West has to go poop, he works on it for a good hour and sometimes three hours if he is on his back in bed. I was getting no sleep listening to him grunt and moan for three hours. At first, I thought that he needed to burp. So, I picked him up for a burp and he pooped. It turns out that laying flat on your back isn't the best position for pushing a poop out or a baby for that matter. Plus apparently, we can't pee or poop in our sleep. We have to be awake for the bowels to open. I believe it. If I potty West right when he wakes-up, his diaper is often dry.
It all started when
told me about a friend of hers who pees her baby in her sink when she comes over for a visit. It sounds completely unladylike but putting manners aside for a moment, pee is sterile and is okay for the kitchen sink. So, no big deal?
I asked Lydia if she knew of any books on the subject and she pointed me to
, which she remembered seeing at her
. I checked it out from the library and read it. Serendipitously, I received an email about an Elimination Communication (i.e. Diapers Free) workshop in San Francisco by
. I signed up. I was curious.
I decided to do a 24-hour trial period before the workshop. My first goal was to "catch" West's nighttime poop so that I could get some sleep. So, when he woke me up in the middle of the night with his groaning and moaning, I took off his diaper and held him in a squat position over a cloth diaper. I can tell if he has to go because his penis is sticking up and looks full. Sure enough, he pooped and peed right away and we happily went back to sleep. I didn't have to clean up a sloppy mess of poop smeared all over his butt either. Now I use a potty and not the cloth diaper and I have less laundry!
Once he is over the toilet, he poops. It's like he waits for it. I don't catch a lot of his pees right now, but I am hoping to as I get use to this new method of diapering or should I say not diapering. I catch the obvious pees like after nursing and first thing in the morning.
Ah yes, I have been pooped and peed on, but it has only been once or twice and isn't much worse than a diaper blowout, which I just had to clean up this morning because I was too tired to poop West in the potty. After changing the bed and doing laundry, I'm motivated again to listen to his cues and put him on the potty. Putting West on the potty isn't much different than reminding a toddler to go to the bathroom at key transitions in the day like before leaving the house, before bed and in the morning.
The concept seems outlandish, but when I started thinking about what most of the world does for diapering babies, it totally makes sense. Most places don't have a Lucky's down the street with
. And the people living in these places don't have the money to spend on diapers. They carry their babies close to them and learn their signs for peeing and pooping.
Yes, I realize that we don't live in India or Tibet but baby instincts are the same. Babies don't want to defecate on themselves. What animal pees and poops on themselves and sits in it for hours.
When I asked Zack this question, he answered, "worms." I responded, "I think worms are insects." Actually, we are both wrong. In any case, I think that we can agree that worms are a far cry from human babies.
I mean really, the more that I think about it, the more that it grosses me out. Would I want to sit in my poop? Diapers are a convenience of modern life for adults. I bet if the babies could talk, they would have something to say about it.
West is five weeks old and wears diapers. I take them off like I would pants when he has to pee or poop. He still sits in his pee sometimes if he is sleeping but it's less now. And, I do hope to have him out of diapers by his first birthday.
Now if only I can get my three-year old out of his nighttime diaper.