frigg is good at guessing such* by the shape of a momma's tummy, so I took a pic for her and thought I'd open it up to a poll to see if anyone else shares her prowess.
Don't make fun of a pregnant lady in spandex! :P
Poll #1948714 The Guessing Game
Open to: All, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 9
From the looks of you, I say:
|it's a GIRL!|
|it's a BOY!|
* We met up in Paris while I was pregnant with Sprout, and she did say "a girl," but she didn't want to declare herself 100% because she didn't think I was showing enough at that time. :P
Before I get started let me mention the number one reason why I never shared much about our diaper-free life the first time around, aside from, I mean, the fatigue and lack of energy that go hand in hand with baby raising. In a nutshell: I did not feel very comfortable talking about the whole process because I never wanted (nor want) to come across as espousing that the way we do things is the *right* way and that we look down on parents who have different ideas/methods. Discussing divergent opinions/methods in any realm is a good way to get up people's danders, and holding differing parenting views has got to be one of the most surefire ways of making another parent feel like they are under attack. Even if said discussions are not about finger-pointing and one-upmanship and all those other comparison-heavy things, they can sure feel like it. No one likes to be judged, especially not parents. We get enough questioning, skepticism, advice, and criticism from family members and friends without hearing it from online strangers, too.
Anyhow, rest assured: Your parenting choices are safe around me. I'm not preaching; I'm just sharing to appease curiosity and give one family's experience with an unorthodox tool that is out there if parents want to give it a whirl.
If you are unaware of what going diaper-free entails, you can google it along with terms like "elimination communication" and "natural infant hygiene." I came across the idea quite by accident, many years before I got pregnant, and it made so much sense to me on a gut-level that I knew I would have to try it if ever I became a mother.* Enter Sprout and our foray into communicating with a newborn about basic bodily functions. :) This is my most complete entry on the subject, written when Sprout was six months old. As I said, I kind of fell off the wagon about blogging about it after that, so the following timeline is going to be full of ballpark numbers rather than actual, precise dates.
After our successes with Sprout vocalizing her need to go, we had less misses. For awhile. Then she got more mobile and able to explore her world at will. Lots of distractions and experiments with her surroundings led to a distinct decline in her interest in letting her parents know she needed to go. :P Thankfully we had hardwood (read: easy-to-clean) floors.
We continued to hold her over a bowl, the sink, the toilet, etc. to help her void, buying a potty just before she learned to walk. We still have that potty, so the issue is moot with Junebug, but if I were starting over again, I would still have a bowl (smaller and very portable) but I would get a potty much earlier to help hold the baby. Another thing of note is that Sprout never had a problem going to the bathroom outside. I did not give this much thought until we were traveling one day with another couple who had a small child who absolutely refused to be held and void in a ditch. We never encountered any resistance concerning going to the bathroom, unless you count when she stopped wanting to be held and insisted on sitting on the big toilet herself, like in a public restroom, where I would have preferred to hold her. If the place was dirty, I could usually get her to fall in line with no worries.
She was 14-16 months old while we were in Albania, old enough and stable enough to run around unassisted and she would often go to the potty by herself.
At 17 months--17 months of not once getting a solid night's sleep--I decided I could no longer get up in the night and take Sprout to potty. I was exhausted and felt close to cracking. So, I started ignoring the sleep whimpers that signaled she had to relieve herself and allowed her to go in the diaper at night. Sometimes she woke with a dry diaper, sometimes no. I did not want to be OK with that, but I HAD to be OK with that. During the day, accidents were virtually unheard of, but she was still incapable of pulling down her own pants to go. It was not until about 24 months of age that she was able to do that with some success.
We never potty "trained" her. She just went to the bathroom when needed. There was no undoing of "bad" habits. She had accidents, especially when excited and distracted, but there was never any shame about poo or pee or the act of going--or in missing, even though I admit that sometimes I would exasperatedly ask, "Why!?" Why did she not go since she has pretty much known from birth about how the whole potty thing works. :P
At 26 months, I felt our landlady's bedding was safe enough that we didn't have to worry any more about nighttime nappies, and she only had maybe 2 accidents in the space of 10 months. Then, when we went back to France in September (and she was 35 months), she had a spate of accidents, some awake and 3 or 4 at night. It was embarrassing in the sense that I felt my MIL was judging me and our methods, but I knew it was because of all the changes and the sense of being in "new" surroundings (for several days, she would ask to go to "her home" to have "her things" and "her bed.") No accidents after she got acclimated and none since then.
She is now 37.5 months old and in control of going to the bathroom, even getting up and going in the middle of the night by herself. Of course, she still needs help cleaning her bottom after a bowel movement, but she tries to do that (and empty her potty) by herself. :-/ I'd rather be the one doing that for a wee bit longer. :P
As I said, this is more of a timeline than anything and not at all about process. If you want to ask any questions, though, about any part of going diaper-free, fire away. :)
* I don't know if Ignorance is Bliss, but in my case, I think it might often amount to the same thing. Once I learn something new that really speaks to me and asks me to change a way of thinking or doing for a better (but often harder) way, I just can't turn my back and conscience on that new knowledge.
Instead of writing this week, I've been thinking a lot, hashing out fuzzy plot bits in hopes of gaining clarity for the opening. I've come up with some important stuff, but so far, the shape of the scene--what needs to be in it, what will interest and not overwhelm the readers--is still escaping me.
I finally had the idea of approaching it as if I plan to tell only Baxente's story, as if there are not four other POVs in the trilogy. I think I'm on to something and will try to pursue it more this week.
However, the Christmas season has begun, and we're doing advent with Soëlie this year. I plan on posting every day (maybe) about what activity we are doing. So between doing the activities and other projects (like sewing), we'll see how much time I
J has to work on Thanksgiving Thursday, so I was not planning on doing anything this year. What with being sick* and not knowing many people here in Cairo for whom Thanksgiving is a big deal, I was all right with the idea of not making a fuss. The more I thought about it, though, the more I realized I didn't have to do much in order to mark the occasion.
So, we had slow-roasted duck, homemade cranberry sauce (found frozen lingonberries), cornbread dressing, and pecan pie as traditional fare, with green beans, a green salad, and roasted potatoes and garlic with a homemade baguette. And we watched Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving just before eating. Not to be all bah-humbug or overly-critical of "must-see" holiday movies, but that cartoon is really blah. I never cared for Chuck and his friends while I was growing up, and I see the love has not grown with me into adulthood. :P
Wishing all who celebrate (and even those who don't) and thankfilled and blessed day tomorrow. If you do "do Thanksgiving" what is your one (or 2) absolute must eat item for it to fill like Thanksgiving to you? I once knew a boy whose family had hamburgers every Thanksgiving because none of them liked turkey and the trimmings.
* Sprout is feeling so much better. She went to bed at 4:30 p.m. yesty and slept (a bit fitfully, it's true) until 6:45 this morning. She has been herself all day, without a hint of fever. Also got my lab results, which declared that I have not "pathogenic bacteria" and do not need antibiotics. I sure am glad I asked for a throat swab because, had I not been adamant about not wanting to take antibiotics while pregnant, the doc might have prescribed them anyhow. My throat still feels irritated, but it is nothing I can't live with.
As for me, I'm coughing a bit and have a throat that is not exactly sore, more irritated. I'm tired, tired, tired. From my own gunk, for sure, but mostly from caring for a sick kid around the clock.* Anyhow, I'm not as "lucky" as Sprout, for the doctor said I likely have a bacterial infection. I asked for a throat swab before being prescribed something. I'll get the results on Sunday. I hope to be feeling better by then.
Just so you know, I've kept up with my flist, but guys and gals, I just don't have the energy to respond. My brain feels like mush. This makes me especially sorry in regards to cafenowhere's excellent posts on Writing Latin@ Characters Well, the latest of which is here. I want to converse--I really do--but all I would be able to manage is muffledy mumbledy garble.
Soon, I hope to have more brain cells at my disposal...
*That is not to say that I've been doing it all alone--J is a great help, except when he is working since his shifts are 24 hrs long, as was the case yesty and last night--but when Sprout is sick, like many kids, I think, she just wants her momma.