This is not what you think… Nature’s Child is actually the name of an organic baby and children’s store in Byron Bay in Australia. I was doing a little shopping around for cloth diapers when I was pregnant with Margo. Art and I heard about this organic baby store in Byron Bay, and since we love going to Byron Bay (mostly to eat), we decided to stop by. I must have been nearing the end of my pregnancy, maybe 36 weeks or more? Of course, I went to 41 1/2 with Margo, but that’s another story… Anyway, the lady working at the shop was in the middle of telling me all about the wide range of cloth diapers that were available when all of a sudden, she said, ‘Have you ever heard of nappy free’. (We call them nappies in Australia). I was like: ‘NAPPY FREE!?!?!’ You’re kidding me right? No, she wasn’t kidding. There were books and tutorials and ‘accessories’ for making your baby nappy free. Some places called it Elimination Communication (EC), or Infant Hygiene. I didn’t buy any cloth nappies or nappy free training kits at that moment,,, but the conversation did plant a little seed in my brain. The seed was like: ‘Nappy free, nappy free!!!! All along, I had known there was something even better than cloth diapers!!!!’
I went straight home and onto the internet to investigate how this whole procedure of nappy free went. It did seem like it would be a bit challenging… I mean, I had NO CLUE about babies, let alone what their elimination schedule was like. I asked a few people I had known who had babies if they had heard of it… well, it was clear that just by asking the question that I was onto some voodoo witch craft. ‘Teaching a baby to poo on command?! Sitting around with your baby hanging over a bush all day?! What a waste of time, they said. You’ll psychologically damage them! Good luck with that!’ These are all direct quotes I heard, not only from ordinary people, but hospital midwives, doctors and even one stupid pediatrician! By the time Margo was born, I have to say, my enthusiasm for this EC thing had dropped considerably, mostly because of so many people telling me I was crazy to even try it! But, I just had to give it a go!!! I think I’ve mentioned this before in a previous post, but at 11 days, I nervously held Margo over a little blue bucket, like I had seen in the videos and photos online and made a ‘pssss‘ sound and she did a wee, then I blew a raspberry and squeezed my tummy muscles with her back against mine, and she did a poo! I was jumping around in excitement and Margo was looking at me like ‘duh, do you really think I like crapping my pants?’. When Art came home from work, I immediately showed him our new ‘trick’. He was pretty stoked and even gave it a go himself! That was the start of EC for us!
I was so excited! I couldn’t believe it! Wow, who wouldn’t want to try this! So, I started emailing and messaging all my friends with babies or babies on the way. I told them how to do it and why it was awesome. I went on and on and on… until I realized that a lot of people thought I was actually a bit crazy… (hmmm… not the first time in my life). I had to tone it down a bit. I couldn’t tell everyone in the whole world with all of my bubbling enthusiasm that my little infant child was pooping and peeing in a potty and that they could do it too! It really scared people, even to the point of me being unknowingly offensive! The people it offended the most were second or third time moms. They thought that I was telling them that they were raising their kids wrong or something! Oh, I didn’t mean for it to come out that way! I was just a rookie mom all excited about something cool I discovered! From then on, I decided that I would mention it to people and only if they showed a lot of interest, would I even bother explaining it.
But, I do always mention it to people, just in case. Imagine if that nice lady at Nature’s Child had never shared her knowledge of ‘nappy free’ with me? I wouldn’t be writing a fun and entertaining blog on EC and I probably would have two in diapers, instead of one toilet trained toddler and one newborn who poops and pees in a bucket. I don’t even know the woman’s name who told me, but I am so very grateful for what she shared. We still love going to their shop, even though they are a mostly on line shop. We get our cloth diaper covers from them and they always have the best natural organic baby and kiddie products. Their bargain bins are the best! So, even though it might scare the crap out of people when I tell them about EC, I still have to at least let them know. You never know, of all the people I tell, a very few of those people have tried it out and for some they have really taken EC on board and it has shaped the way they raised their babies. To me, it’s just been another dimension of parenting that I’ve really enjoyed. So, for those few people out there, I will continue to let people know about EC, even if the general population thinks I’m a bit nuts!