Or: our journey to NOT potty training
You would have thought that having a 2.5 years old toddler at home, you‘re „out of the worst“ (as we say in German). E can walk (in fact, she’s pretty much running everywhere, all the time), talk full sentences, work her charm when she wants something, eats like a trooper, sleeps through the night pretty okay(ish) and plays independently (for like 2 minutes, but still). She goes to dayare, she can dress herself from head to toes (I still find this pretty surprising) and knows half the alphabet (not in the right order though). She can watch her favourite TV show – Peppa Pig – which, we keep repeating to her, is a „big girl privilege“. So, the signs all around are on “big girl”. And although she isn‘t fully potty trained yet, there is light at the end of the tunnel, surely?
With summer here and E reaching the two and a half years milestone during our month-long holiday in the South of France, I figured she might be ready to skip the nappies. She’s already sitting on the toilet for, you know, fun and to have us read her favorite books to her. Or eat a yoghurt. As you do…
But turns out, and however unpopular this might make me look in mama (blogger) circles: my daughter loves her nappies, still! And why do I know? Beacause she tells me exactly this. “Mami, aber Elma so gern ihri Windeli aa hed!”. Which simply translates to: Elma loves her nappies, plain and simple. So, potty trained isn’t in the foreseeable future for us.
Not that there is any rush, really… Although. I would have loved to be able to be one of those mamas who, with their kid at 2 years old, can brag about them being “potty trained”, and of course all by themselves. How cool is a kid who can poop in the toilet before it can talk about it? Pretty impressive, right? And really, I let E do everything in her own time, because I’m a firm believer that “grass doesn’t grow faster if you pull it” (another German saying). And I hate incentivicing too much, like, i don’t think placing a poop in the toilet successfully calls for a gift of any sort. It’s just what people do (well, at least eventually), pooping in the toilet, I mean. I am, however, always the mama to throw an impromptu dance party for E whenever she does place a poop successfully in the toilet, man! I embrace celebrations of any sort, so a toilet poop is just as good as any excuse to go nuts. HA!
Tried to incentivize E to enjoy the potty – with “beautiful” undies we let her pick herself.
I am still a teeny tiny bit under pressure though… Pointing at my belly here. Being pregnant with baby number 2 doesn‘t really mean the changing nappies era is over for us yet, but will be continued in October 2019 (yay!). And yes, it has me worried that, if E isn‘t “dry” by October (inspite of our best efforts), and we will only be adding one pooping, farting, peeing newborn to our existing exemplary of a nappy clad toddler monster, that I will officially be the double-nappy-changing mama. Which would mean, in blank black: nappies around the clock. Every single day, every hour of the day.
So do I long for a nappy free time already? I know, not happening within the next 2-3 years, and I’m prepared… but a girl can always dream, it’s what keeps us going, no? YES, I bloody do!
To some extent, my distress about the continuation of the nappies (with double force) is aimed at Mother Earth, though, for real. I‘m actually so sorry my monsters are causing so much waste! Just by calculating this through, we must have changed (and thrown away) roughly over 6‘500 diapers in E‘s wake! Six Thousand Five Hundred, guys. That‘s a lot of pipi and caca, and a lot of waste.
But most importantly, I wouldn‘t miss the nappy-free fact that you don‘t always have to constantly worry about nappy related horrors. You know what I‘m talking about, fellow parents. I‘m talking nocturnal poop explosions (that all too soon, you successfully clear from your memory), hand washing and bleaching every single garment with chemicals to remove the stains, worrying about sore bums, nappy rash and running out of diapers (aka a parent‘s worst nightmare) on a public holiday, when everyone in the family is sick, the car is at the garage and the weather is terrible (it has happened).
So, considering all of this, experience, worries. Would I say the choice of diapers is of immense importance, for all involved parties? I mean for my own sanity, first and foremost, obviously (no, I really can do without that third poop explosion going up to the neck in one day…). But also for Mother Earth‘s sake. And last but not least my baby’s bum (the little shitters do get irritating when they have a sore bum… you want to skip that at any cost) and overall happiness. Holy poop, yes! Choosing the right „Partner in Poop“ is no less than a matter of life and death.
So when I got the chance to co-create The Perfect Nappy for Swiss mamas with international nappy lovemark Rascal and Friends, was I excited? They’re basically the Tiffany’s of nappies, so that’s a good starting point. Definitely the pioneers in terms of no-nasties nappies that look cool, are super soft and genius. Why does that have to be such a niche anyway, great nappies?
Rascal and Friends is a premium nappy brand, designed and developed in New Zealand for premium performance at affordable prices to help fight explosions and be gentle on Rascal bums. Unlike any other diapers I know, their products are soft, absorbent and contain no nasties. Rascals are currently spreading their love to all of the world and the Swiss market was also on the list, with Migros as their retail partner. I had never heard of them before, but am glad I got introduced to Alex, who works for Rascals. They reached out to me as a mama with, of course, lots of diaper experience (see above statistics) from a practical view, ha. Poop insights are basically my métier. And not only did they want to talk to a Swiss mama, they also seeked marketing insights from someone who knows the Swiss mama social media scene and bloggosphere. Note: I’m glad the mama blogging is occasionally not just a cute pastime of mine but proves to be an actual business, bam!
Rascals goal: they wanted to be as best prepared as possible for the Swiss market entry, so I became their Swiss “ears and eyes” on all things Swiss parenting, nappies and more. Over the course of almost 2 years (wow), I was in regular contact with their team of marketeers and developers, working closely together. We pulled together an extensive market research, kind of aiming for a “Swiss Mama Rascals Torture Test”. NB: their nappies then were perfect for international markets, but that didn’t necessarily mean they were also perfect for Swiss parents. So I gathered two dozens of Swiss mamas – from my personal, blogger and professional network. It was a real Super Mama Task Force! A team of the first mamas to test R+F in Switzerland. We supplied our network mamas with weeks’ worth of nappies to have them test the Rascals thoroughly, day and night – through good times and bad times.
The result? All the mamas whom we got to test R+F extensively were excited – just like me when I first covered E’s bum in them! The feedbacks were incredibly positive.They loved the funky design and the snug and comfy fit. The “no nasties” were a big hit, too. Something parents were acutely aware of and looking for in a diaper, but didn’t get in other nappies here in Switzerland. Rascals is actually free from latex, lotions, fragrances and only uses water based inks. They have sourced the best possible products around the world for their diapers. And the most praised feature was that there were finally and miraculously no more nightly leaks. Something that makes mamas’ lives a lot easier, let me tell you. Thanks to their innovative absorbency technology, the diaper actually feels much more dry to the touch, even when fully soaked. And it also helps prevent “explosions” (gross). What’s not to love?
Based on the feedback, we made some tiiiiny tweaks to the diaper for the Swiss market. Namely making the diaper even softer (as if it wasn’t already feathery soft…) and a bit more breathable yet. We also changed the color a little, making it a lighter, pastel-y touch minty color (see my aforementioned nod to Tiffany’s) to appeal more to local parents. And the rest is history.
So, are you hooked on having the best Nappy Partner in Crime yet for yourself? From September on, Rascals will be available at Migros in Switzerland and you will be able to test them for yourself. I’m excited to finally see the nappies in stores and of course, to hear all the other parents’ echoes…! And of course, perfect timing with the arrival of baby girl by beggining of October. Phew, at least the newborn poop explosions can be kept to a minimum now.
A word at the end: may the journey to potty training end, eventually. And may it be a hell of a convenient ride, sans explosions or sore bums, while it lasts. Because mama life is tough shit enough as it is, huh?
Love, champagne and cute nappies for all