Back when I was diaper waffling in October, I predicted I would abandon cloth once Owen got squirmy, stinky and belligerent on me. But I really hate to start using nothing but disposables now that I’ve settled into the fairly simple process of storing and laundering cloth diapers. It’s cheap and, since I hang-dry the things, I’m pretty sure it’s better for the environment.
So I decided to do one of those ridiculously specific Google searches: “getting baby still to change diaper.” And I landed at this web site, where I quickly ticked off all the advice in my mind. Done that. Tried it. Worked once but never again…. And then I hit the gold mine: Offer something ordinarily forbidden like a cell phone, a television remote or masking tape…. So this morning I gave Owen a TV remote and he marveled at it, still on his back for an entire diaper change. Next diaper change I tried it again and before I had so much as pulled his pants down, Owen immediately flipped himself over to explore the remote like so.
So out came the masking tape, which worked for one diaper change but was old news by the time
Owen was due for another change. This time I was prepared with a back-up novel item – a piece of thick string, and again this worked for just one diaper change. So next time we moved on to one of Will’s sippy cups (which Owen covets more than any of his toys) and then a spool of thread. If Owen’s squirminess forces me to present him with new items to explore, I guess that’s just the innate learner in him, demanding that he be taught with fresh materials – so I don’t mind obliging him. As long as I can keep coming up with novel ideas – or perhaps a rotation of about 30 of them??
By the end of the day, though, I was ready to let Rob have a hand at the diaper changing. Surely he could handle just one disposable after Owen’s bath?
“Okay, you’re up,” Rob calls to me from the bedroom, as if to suggest that he’d diapered the boy and it’s time for me to take over the bedtime routine.
So I walk in and, behold, there is naked Owen crawling on the floor toward nowhere, with his Pampers lying open a couple feet behind him. So there we were again: me and Squirmy and a spool of thread. (It took the thread PLUS a gleeful verse of Little Bunny Foo Foo to get that simple disposable on Owen, and he still flipped on me before I finished the job.)
How do you restrain, subdue, hypnotize or otherwise manipulate your kids to keep them still for diaper changes or other obligatory tasks?