Danielle Gajewski, BDes
Certified Coach | Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
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The first time that I held my 6-month-old daughter over the sink and caught a pee, we were both ecstatic, and I became a believer. We practiced EC part-time from that moment until we went daytime diaper-free when she was 17 months old. Our EC journey was not all smooth sailing, however, and I was unable to find an active local group that I could turn to for support. Thankfully, I have a friend with a child the same age as my daughter and we blindly EC’d our children together. The support that we gave each other during that time (regarding EC, and everything else!) was invaluable.
I have become a Go Diaper Free Coach in order to share the joy, satisfaction, and improved communication that EC brings to caregivers and children. My goal is to provide local families with support, information, encouragement, and community in order to help them reduce or eliminate their child’s use of diapers, at any age!
I offer workshops, support groups and private consultations (both in-person and virtually over phone/skype) in EC and non-coercive potty-training in Edmonton, AB and surrounding areas.” For more information, visit my website www.weepotty.ca.
If you are looking for support or advice, or have any questions at all, I would love to hear from you! Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Danielle's experience with EC
A good friend of mine first told me about EC, she had a baby at the time and I was not yet pregnant: “Did you know that some people don't use diapers and start taking their babies to the potty right-away?” What??? That sounds so crazy we both agreed. Then went on to question co-sleeping and nursing-on-demand, ha! ha! ha! How things changed when I had a baby of my own!
When I was pregnant I came across some information about EC in a book and was very interested in it. However, this particular book made me feel like it was a really daunting task, requiring too much time an energy! Being a first-time mom, it seemed overwhelming at the time so EC fell to the wayside. When my daughter was 6 months old, a friend recommended a great book on EC to me, and I learned that you can still use diapers and EC! You can make EC fit your lifestyle! It can be done part-time! It doesn't have to consume your life!!! So the morning after I finished that book, I took my daughter into the bathroom, held her (diaper-less) over the sink while making a “pssss pssss” sound, and she peed right away! It was really cool because we were both looking at each other in the mirror and were smiling at each other and she looked so proud and happy about it. I was hooked!
Teaching EC (and non-coercive potty training) has been incredibly rewarding. People tell me that they feel empowered and confident after taking my classes, which is just the best thing ever. I think that I have gotten the word out about EC in my community in a way that is not daunting or “weird”, and have encouraged many parents to try it, who otherwise would not have known about it at all! Furthermore, I love being able to help parents reduce their use of diapers, at any age, eliminating hundreds of diapers from entering the landfill every year!
With my daughter, I didn't use any special gear at all! But we did love the little green IKEA potty when she was smaller and used it in the car a lot too!
I am currently expecting my second child and am excited to start EC much earlier. I already have a lot of gear that I am excited to try for myself such as the Potette Plus potty, diaper-belts, split-pants and Flaparaps EC diapers!
Two books that come to mind are “The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding” by La Leche League International and “Simplicity Parenting” by Kim Jon Payne.
In regards to EC, the book that convinced me to try it was “The Diaper-free baby” by Christine Gross-Loh. Soon thereafter I read EC Simplified (Andrea Olson's first book, now called Go Diaper Free) which was imperative for seeing us through the different ages and stages of pottying.
Just do it! You really can't do it wrong, as long as you approach EC with patience and kindness. The benefits of EC go far beyond just catching pee in the potty, it is a wonderful tool for deepening communication with your baby, having a happier baby (EC's great for tummy troubles and constipation!), saving you money, reducing the number of diapers in the landfill (or less water and energy to wash!), and normalizing pottying – making the transition to completion (or potty-training) easier for the whole family.