We were happy to host this elimination communication giveaway! Our goals were to spread awareness of elimination communication and help one lucky winner get their baby geared up and ready to go. The giveaway is over, but the comments are still valuable. Please scroll to the bottom and read people's tips for those starting elimination communication.
Our EC Journey
In our household, elimination communication, a.k.a. natural infant hygiene, is a natural part of our daily activities. My husband and I first encountered the EC lifestyle while traveling in India, where naked babies are a common sight. In China we saw many bare baby bottoms peeking out of split crotch pants. I was intrigued by the idea of an alternative to reliance on diapers.
When we returned home, I read Diaper Free: The Gentle Wisdom of Natural Infant Hygiene by Ingrid Bauer and The Diaper-Free Baby: The Natural Toilet Training Alternative by Christine Gross-Loh. I was set on practicing elimination communication once we welcomed our own baby.
When our son was born, there were so many things to figure out as a first time mom. Breastfeeding was top priority. Then came sorting out our cloth diapering system. During the first few weeks, our EC efforts consisted of making the cue sound "psss" whenever we noticed our baby peeing and a couple sessions of modified diaper-free time with a prefold and diaper belt to watch for signals.
When our son was around one-month-old, I decided it was time to get serious about EC and start offering pottytunities. It felt like I had to figure things out all on my own. Was popping off during a feeding a signal? Or did I have too strong of a milk let down? It was a timely coincidence that not long after, I learned of the book Go Diaper Free: A Simple Handbook for Elimination Communication by Andrea Olson. Go Diaper Free includes a list of common elimination signals, which I had been struggling to decipher on my own. It is a wonderful how-to book for anyone who has already decided to venture down the EC road.
My EC relationship with my son keeps evolving along the way. He is now 10-months-old, and I am happy that EC has been a part of our daily routine for most of his life. It offers another avenue for responsive attachment parenting, and it is an environmentally friendly way to respond to a baby's elimination needs. At first I was shy to tell people that I was going to let my baby pee in the potty, instead of just in diapers. I wanted to prove to myself that EC works and I did not want to brag, only to take one step forward and two steps back. It was a bit of an accident the first time that I publicly announced that I was attempting EC with my son. I had just rejoined the conversation taking place in my local baby group, after yet another pottytunity/ diaper change break with my son, who was only a couple months old. And "lo and behold", they were discussing infant potty training! I blurted out, "You practice EC too?!". I was so happy to think that I was not alone. But the other mom's reply was, "No, I don't do EC, I was just telling the group about it.". Bummer. And now the cat was out of the bag.
As the months progressed, my confidence in natural infant hygiene increased. I stopped caring what people in public restrooms thought and stopped whispering the cue sounds. I was prepared with a response in case anyone questioned me. "Hey, at least my 5-month-old pees on cue in a public toilet." But I never did encounter any negative comments about EC. The main thing missing at the start of our family's EC adventure was a local support group. People I could meet in person to swap stories and advice. I had found a wonderfully supportive international EC Facebook group, but I still wanted to actually meet another EC'ing family. So I started a local support group and have been pleasantly surprised by the interest friends and acquaintances have expressed in learning about elimination communication. And we even met another family that has been practicing EC since their son was born!
If you are considering venturing down the EC path or are just starting, I want to reassure you that you are not alone. EC is a natural and normal way to respond to your baby's needs. It's common throughout many non-Western cultures. And who knows, your neighbor may also be taking their baby to the potty. If you are ready to dive in, this elimination communication giveaway can get your baby geared up and ready to go! And for you EC pros, you will also appreciate these EC friendly prizes. To those who practice EC, please share the knowledge, so we can all feel a bit more at ease while practicing EC.
Elimination Communication Giveaway Prize Pack
|Potty (color and brand may vary)||A potty is one of the most useful tools for EC!|
|Potty by Leslie Patricelli||A fun board book to read while your baby sits on the potty.|
|Cotton diaper belt and rECtangle, courtesy of EC Wear||A diaper belt can be worn around your baby's waist to hold a prefold cloth diaper in place. A rECtangle is a simple diaper cover to pair with a diaper belt or Li'l Baby Chaps. Diaper belts and rECtangles make pottytunities or diaper changes easy.|
|$20 gift certificate for Poquito Pants, courtesy of Wonderbaby Designs||Poquito Pants are cloth training pants that hold one wet and are especially designed for babies who use the potty. Sizes run from newborn to 3+ years.|
|Bright Solid 4-pack legwarmers for babies||These bright legwarmers are suitable for ages 3 months to 6 years and are a convenient way to dress your baby for EC.|
Enter the Elimination Communication Giveaway
This giveaway is open to U.S. residents who are 18 years of age or older. Only one entry per person. The giveaway is open from 12:00am HST on October 13, 2014, until 12:00am HST on October 24, 2014. One winner will be randomly drawn using Rafflecopter. The winner will be notified by email and will have 5 days to respond with their mailing address, or another winner will be chosen. The winner will also be announced on this webpage. Prizes will be mailed to the winner's street address within the 50 United States. Some prizes will ship separately. Your information will be used only for contacting you if you win and for notifying sponsors, so they can fulfill prizes. Natural Beauty Lifestyle is not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prizes. The winner is responsible for payment of any taxes due on the value of the prize pack ($90). Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are in no way associated with this giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law.
And the winner is: Courtney L!
"I wanted to thank you again for these prizes! The potty is so awesome and the perfect size for my little guy. We had only used the EC hold on the potty so far so it is so neat to have him sit on his potty. The little leggings are cute and the board book is so funny but so appropriate!" -Courtney
Please comment with either (1) why you are interested in trying EC, or if you already practice EC (2) tips you have for those starting EC.