Wriggly nappy changes and parental sacrifice – some advice on how to approach nappy changes now your baby is growing up.

As a first time, expectant mum I lovingly, naively expected that I’ll heroically sacrifice time, energy and sleep to my future son. Like all mothers I am continually muddling my way through sacrifice versus identity, but there’s one thing I never knew I’d need to sacrifice.

Kitchen utensils.
Pre-children I prided myself on avoiding plastic by buying kitchen utensils made of silicon, wood, natural fibres and recycled materials. I didn’t realise that all these efforts would be futile as they were sacrificed to distraction toys for the change table. My son has now entered the ‘wriggle phase‘ when changing nappies. Somehow, the worst part of his day is lying on his back for 3 minutes while I change his nappy. To seduce him into submission, I have sacrificed all my best kitchen utensils constantly seeking those precious 3 minutes of co-operation.
My nappy change station now resembles the ‘second draw’. My grandma would call it the “odds and sodds” draw. My son currently has full access to my silicone stirring spoon, jar lids, storage container lids (thus continuing the endless search for a matching container/lid combination) and drink bottle lids. Oh, and my silicon pastry brush is nowhere to be seen. I think that’s made the ultimate sacrifice and is under the dishwasher. Probably when we sell the house in 30 years I’ll find it again. How’s that for recycling?
I went to the op shop looking for utensils he could keep as his own. Most ended up in our kitchen with the originals refusing to relinquished but one utensil was an absolute hit. Do you remember the pasta scoop (here) was incredibly popular in households in the 90’s? It has holes in the bottom and plastic blunt ‘teeth’ on the sides. My son LOVES poking his fingers in the holds and twirling it around.

I’ve learnt the following tricks work:

  • Anything silicone is fantastic and goes straight in the mouth. Good for 3 minutes peace and quiet.
  • Anything metal that can be banged is useful for keeping hands out of the danger zone. Clean jam jar lids work well.
  • If a lid is getting boring (because it’s been played with too much) put rubber bands on it. They make a “twang” when pulled.
  • Older drink bottles with the rubber bit you pull with your teeth make great munching distractions.
  • Pastry brushes are so fascinating you will probably never see them again.
  • Bonus points if you can give your baby something that can be put in the dishwasher afterwards.
So if you are in desperation to hold down your wriggling bundle of joy – it’s worth it to sacrifice something from your “odds and sodds” draw.

Happy nappy changing!

This post was written by Monica Rolfe, ‘Mum-in-training’.