Change time can be a messy time when baby gets into their wriggly phase (pro tip: this ‘phase’ will probably last until they’re toilet trained, so get used to it!) but there are ways of combating their restlessness.
Have everything you’ll need on hand before setting baby down, including wipes, diaper, diaper pail, and any balms, powder, etc. When using disposable wipes, I separate one or two wipes as they always seem to clump at the worst moments!
My partner sometimes runs into trouble during change time by being fooled by baby’s seemingly pleasant mood. As you learn pretty quickly when you become a parent, babies moods can change in the blink of an eye! They have not yet learned to be patient with us so if they decide that change time is over, you’d better be ready to finish ASAP. Take too long and you might have an upset baby on the table where you set your happy baby down. Get the dirty diaper off and baby cleaned up straight away, then you and your little one can indulge in some change table banter, giggles, and songs.
Babies are not shy when it comes to telling their parents what they want and how they feel. If I try to change my baby’s diaper before he’s ready, he will let me know in no uncertain terms! Usually if he doesn’t want his diaper changed it’s because he’s about to really fill it, which is a timesaver. If your baby is resistant to being changed, go with the flow and rearrange the order of events. It’s better for them to spend a little longer in a wet diaper while they nurse, have a catnap, or play than to have a fresh bottom but be to be too upset to do any of those things!
My partner realised early on that even when our baby was upset, one particular toy could always make him smile. This toy is tucked away so it stays novel and is whipped out when baby is really starting to stress. It’s saved us all from many a change table meltdown! If there’s no hand free to grab the toy, I’ve found that counting sometimes does the trick, or even ‘beatboxing’! As far as the little guy knows, Mama is a champion beatboxer who deserves accolades in the way of giggles and grins!
Easier said than done sometimes, I know! Taking a deep breath when things get frustrating or stressful is the number one way to keep from getting overwhelmed. This goes for anytime, not just change time. I try to remind myself of this when frequent nighttime nursing sessions render me sleepy, irritable, and impatient! Your baby’s mood is heavily dependant on your own so find a way to ground yourself and reset. When things get hectic, put your plan into action.
You are going to change a lot of diapers before your baby can toilet by themselves, so there will still be some messy ones! Try to remember, as you wipe the sweat (and possibly a little poop) from your brow after a particularly difficult diaper change, that while these times can be very frustrating, soon they will be distant memories far outweighed by happy ones.
In all the rebellion that happens with new babies, sometimes, we forget the little tips & tricks. Like why a pacifier can be your sanity saver!