EC’ing Corwin – He’s 1 Year Old!

Corwin turned 1 last week. I can hardly believe it has been a year since his birth. Life is busy with six kids, so I’ve been sporadic with the elimination communication updates. We’re having fun with EC’ing now, so I wanted to let you know how things are going.

one year old baby showing off diaper free

Going Back and Forth with Diapers

I have gone back and forth with diapering Corwin over the past six months.  We’ve used a lot of diaper backup, but at around 9 months I decided to keep Corwin diaper free as much as I could.

That went pretty well, then life and the holidays came along and we went back to diapers most of the time.  I was too busy to even feel guilty!

Throughout all the diaper backup time I’ve continued to take Corwin to the potty for poops and I felt good about that.  But I really think using consistent diaper backup makes it harder to EC.  It’s easier to ignore baby’s cues when you know a diaper is on, and that has been true with Corwin.

The Diaper Rash

As with Honor, a diaper rash helped me re-commit to keeping Corwin diaper free.  He’s not cruising or walking yet, but Corwin gets around.  Rather than crawling, he scoots along on his bottom.  It’s really cute!

It’s not kind to a baby in a wet diaper, however, because the wet cloth chafes his skin.  It wasn’t initially a problem because Corwin was wetting lightly and his pocket diapers have a stay-dry inner against his skin.  But he’s started wetting more heavily with an increase in nursing.  I went to my “no leak” strategy – folding a bamboo liner inside the pocket over his wet zone.  With this and the insert, I get no leaks.

The problem?  The wet bamboo is against his skin and between that and scooting with wet fabric against him, we got a bad diaper rash.

Diaper Free Days

We’ve now been diaper free for days (I’m still diapering at night).  I’m much more in tune with Corwin’s cues, and now that I’m paying attention, I can recall him cuing strongly even with the diaper on.  I ignored it just because it was more convenient for me (boy, do I feel guilty!!).

I can’t dwell on past guilt now, though… and I’m paying attention to cues with a diaperless 1-year-old!  We have a carpeted den, so the floor is now covered in towels, which are easier to pick up if I have a miss.

I’m primarily using timing because Corwin pees very often.  I seem to make babies that pee a lot (every 20 minutes or so).  But he also has some distinct cues:

  • Patting/pulling his diaper-less area and making grunting sounds
  • Staring down at his diaper-less area inquisitively
  • Getting still and starting to fuss loudly

The last one has surprised me because sometimes he doesn’t seem to mind having a “miss” and other times he gets very upset and a moment later will start to pee (and get even more upset).

Bowel movement cues are pretty easy – light grunts, bearing down.  He also has a cue I’ve noticed since my very first EC’d baby, getting a red-rimmed look around the eyes.  Actually, however, I usually catch poops on intuition.  I almost never catch pees that way, so it’s surprising to me.  The few times I do have a pee intuition, though, I find I should usually listen to it!

The Misses and The Catches

I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how many catches we have.  The towels increase my confidence (a suggestion I got from Andrea’s Go Diaper Free book) because they soak up a miss and I can just replace the towel.

I did bring Corwin’s little potty out to keep in the family room because it’s just easier for me than running him to the bathroom.  As he begins walking and I feel he’s really got the potty concept down, I’ll work it progressively back towards the bathroom.  We also have a potty insert on the toilet in the bathroom (Honor and Galen both still use it) and I want to begin putting him on there some during the day to help him get used to it.

We’re in the middle of an incredibly cold winter now, with many days dropping below zero.  Even with our woodstove the house is often chilly.  I’ll write more about what we’re doing for clothing in a couple of days, and I’ll keep you updated as we continue to stick to keeping Corwin diaper-free (I’m hoping to get him into tiny undies soon, since scooting on a bare bum isn’t ideal, either!!)

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About the author 


Kristen is a pregnancy coach, student midwife, and a mama to 8 - all born naturally! I've spent nearly two decades helping mamas have healthy babies, give birth naturally, and enjoy the adventure of motherhood. Does complete support for a sacred birth and beautiful beginning for your baby resonate with you? Contact me today to chat about how powerful guidance and coaching can transform your pregnancy, birth, and mothering journey <3

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