Is this the end of nappies for our house?
Nappies indicate that there are babies around. Ask anyone what they think of when you ask them about babies and nappies will probably be somewhere near the top of the list. But it looks like the days of nappies in this house are coming to a close.
My eldest, Henry, was a cloth bottomed baby and after the birth of Isaac, I had 3 months where they were both in cloth nappies. I loved the flexibility of the birth to potty nappies we used. I couldn’t forget nappies for either as long as there was at least one nappy in my bag. I didn’t need two different changing kits. Unfortunately by around 6 months old it was clear that cloth nappies (no matter what liner, lotions or potions we used) did not agree with Isaac’s skin. I was gutted but back to disposables we went. My heart sank when I sold my nappy stash. Although at least lots of it got a new life as part of The Durham Real Nappy Library.
But now, we seems our days, or more correctly nights, of having nappies in the house are drawing to a close. I have never potty trained either of my children. I believe you can’t make them to do something they are not ready to do. So we simply followed their leads. Both Henry and Isaac were relatively young (especially for boys) to be “day time potty trained”.
At the age of 29 months Henry woke up one morning, asked where his grandad was and on hearing that he had gone to the loo, Henry replied “me go too” and that was that and big boy pants entered our lives. He was dry at night just before his third birthday. Again he wasn’t trained. I didn’t restrict drinks or “lift” him, he was just ready.
Since having children I have discovered, contrary to popular myth or parenting books, night time dryness is not something you can teach, nor is it always linked to day time dryness. It is developmental and in a large part linked to hormones (vasopressin). The body and brain need to coincide with each other in order to let the child know they need the toilet when they are sleeping and this might not be until a child is 5 and there is not much doctors will do until at least 6/7. Therefore, as it is largely hormone linked there is very little you can do. We just need to let our children do it when they are ready.
Now it seems we are approaching Isaac’s turn to be night time trained. He was dry in the day at 26 months and had been happily using potty while nappy free from 23 months. He just simply started using it of his own accord. However, he did not get the link until after his 2nd birthday but by the first week of the school summer holidays he was sorted. I vividly remember the first day I went out with just a hand bag. No nappies, no spare clothes. It was liberating. Isaac was 3 in April and since around February we have had several nights a week where he has woken up completely dry but never more than 2 days in a row. Until last week, where Isaac refused to go to bed with a nappy on. We had 4 nights of him being dry in the morning.
Although our luck ran out on the 5th. Since then he has asked for a nappy, even if I had had the waterproof sheets and towels ready. He is getting closer, just not quite ready yet. I am feeling rather emotional about the prospect of no more nappies. My baby is growing up. It seems the baby days are nearly over. Now, I suppose I better embrace the next few steps and stages and the excitement they will bring.
Rachel Coy | The North East Sling Library