I am really surprised by how quickly Evangeline has caught on with Elimination Communication. I say that, but I realize it's actually me who has caught on, and not her. She's probably surprised by how long it took me to catch on! We only used three diapers yesterday! Three! I had a hard time catching pee after she napped because I didn't get to her in time. She's the sort that normally slowly wakes up- she lays there for a bit and stares at the ceiling or runs her hands over her blankets. Sometimes she'll quietly play with a toy or her pacifier. So, when I'm busy about the house, I don't hear her wake-up until she's already wet her diaper. So, our three wet diapers were from nap times, which- hey, is pretty good for a beginner.
When I started cloth diapering, cloth was very, very addictive. It still is, but I simply don't have the money to purchase more diapers. There are better things to spend my money on, even though I would like to buy a couple more covers since she is rapidly outgrowing her Thirsties Duo Wraps (size 1). Still, I have other cloth diapers she can fit in, although they aren't super cute and are rather plan. They do the job, and that's what matters.
Elimination communication is very addictive. It's absolutely thrilling to be able to provide for your baby's needs in this way- just as it is thrilling to be able to feed my baby from my own body. I honestly felt like there was this missing bond between Evangeline and I- not that we don't have a great bond, but it was just not as close as the bond Keagan and I had. Yesterday, I realized that I felt like that gap in our bond had been filled since we were spending more time together and bonding over... well.. elimination.
I realize it sounds completely goofy, and I know some of you are just rolling your eyes here. That's fine by me, because it's not your baby, she's mine. I'm not telling you that you need to try it, so I hope none of you feel like you have to justify why you don't. Really, I get it. After all, it took me seven years to even begin to consider the idea and over six months to really put it into practice!
I realized last night that Evangeline will hold her breath a bit and get very concentrated on the potty right before she's about to tinkle. You almost miss it if you're not paying attention because it's one of those expressions that is gone in the blink of an eye, but I recognized it... and was excited about it. She definitely bears down to go, which tells me she definitely knows how to hold her potty and knows how to release it as well. I get a little giddy over this because I have heard some babies lose this ability over time because they realize (on some level) they can go any time they want and the diaper will catch it. This is what led many doctors to believe that children don't learn to control their bowels until they are around the age of two- because many of them seem to lose the ability, but regain it in the toddler years.
Evangeline loves her potty, and sometimes I'll sit her beside it (usually bare bottomed on a folded up birdseye flat or a prefold) and let her play with it. She pounds on it like a drum, sings to it, pokes at it.... it's pretty funny to watch.
We bought this Puppy Potty for Keagan when he was about two or so, but he hasn't really used it much. It's just easier for him to be on the toilet. I would still like to get one of those IKEA potties I mentioned in a previous entry because, 1, they are so cheap, and 2, they are small and easier to take with me. Definitely more convenient in that aspect. I think I may venture out and get one today- braving the Good Friday crowds!
What does Brandon think about it? He loves it. Last night as Evangeline was sitting on the potty one last time before bed, I asked, "Do you think I'm crazy?"
"No, actually," he replied. "I think it's great. It makes sense!" He had told me this before, but I thought he was just making me feel better. Ha! He's read some of my research on it and we've talked about it- I always try to keep him informed on why we are doing what we are doing because I want him to be able to whole-heartedly support it and to "defend" our choices reasonably if need be, instead of saying, "Uh, because my wife wanted to..." I'm very fortunate in that my husband truly trusts my decision-making when it comes to our children. He has never questioned whether we should homeschool or not vaccinate (we would do selective vaccinations under the right circumstances). But, I've also never asked him to just blindly agree with me (although, I believe in some areas- like cloth diapering and EC- he would just let me do whatever I wanted). I especially think that going through our Unassisted Birth journey (Keagan) really bonded us together in this area even more. I mean, he was flat out against it ("Ew! I don't want baby splooge all over our house!"), but I just piled up a huge binder of information, and continued discussing it with him. I did such a good job that he didn't want to have a midwife assisted birth with Evangeline!
Anyway, he thinks EC is completely logical, so I'm glad he's on the same page as I am.
Last night, when Evangeline woke up for her feeding, I realized she was completely dry. I really felt giddy about it- I mean, completely dry! Ideally, I would have liked to nurse her and then set her on the potty, but I figured doing so would make getting her back to sleep difficult, so I nursed her and put her back to bed. Still- getting through the night in just one diaper (with a feeding at 10pm and 4am) is pretty amazing. When she woke up at around 7-ish, her diaper was wet, but not completely soaked as it is when she sleeps through the night without a feeding. I nursed her and set her on the potty.
She did a lot of tooting. The first time she tooted on the potty it was hilarious- I mean, she looked up at me with an expression of shock, then twisted around to check her rear. Now it's not as shocking to her, and she just goes about her business, checking out her book or gnawing on a toy. I recognized her pee expression, and went to take her off, but she wasn't having any of it. She continued sitting there and tooted a few more times. It probably feels better to toot in the potty rather than a diaper pressed against your butt.
She had peed quite a bit in the potty- double the usual amount, so I know she was trying to hold her pee once she woke up, which is pretty amazing to me.
I set her up a little area by her bed, which is also by a window where there is plenty of natural light flowing in. She liked setting her toys on the window sill and being able to watch the birds perched upon our fence. I think this is the best potty spot- and it's also a convenient area for me to sit.
And a wipe box makes the perfect foot rest! Having something to prop her feet on helped her hold the book better. She loves books. :)
See, she really loves books. Really. The other day, she sat there (just like that!) for 30 minutes while I read to her. NONE of my other babies have loved being read to as much as she does.
Anyway, I hear her fussing- I think the needs another sit on the potty! (Excuse any typos!)
Have a blessed Friday, y'all! Resurrection Sunday is coming!
Note: EC is not potty training. This is not an attempt to potty train our child, but rather provide for her needs, just as breastfeeding provides for her needs (and both also strengthen our bond as a result!). This is not a new practice. It has been used for thousands of years and is still widely employed in other countries, such as Africa, India, and China.
More information on Elimination Communication is available on these sites: