Fact of the Day: Newborn Diapering is a completely different pooventure than diapering an older baby. 

And, although many pre-baby people have changed a diaper at some point in their life, chances are, they haven’t had the privilege of changing a NEWBORN’S diaper. 

Or, maybe you’re post-baby, but you’ve just forgotten some of the intricacies of the procedure. 

Because I certainly had.

And so, for those who have yet to have kids or need a refresher course, there are a few things that you might want to know…

~  If, while changing a diaper, you find yourself changing a wet diaper only (which, by the way, doesn’t happen very often), DO NOT BE PLEASANTLY SURPRISED – be very afraid. It’s coming, it’s coming soon, and it’s coming for you.

Westley~  If, while having a diaper open, you either hear, smell, or see (yes, see!!) infant gaseousness, treat this like Westley (aka The Dread Pirate Roberts) did when hearing the popping noise in the fire swamp – move quickly and protect yourself – it’s probably a forewarning of an impending geyser of mustardy fiery swampiness.

~  Mustardy fire can travel very long distances and cover an unbelievable amount of surfaces with it’s shrapnel in under a tenth of a second.  For an example of the heights and depths of it’s reach, read this awesomely horrific account of such an incident from This is The Day.

~ If you find yourself under fire, DO NOT SHOW YOUR PANIC – it can upset the subject, causing more outbursts of gaseousness, which will, in turn, reset the fire swamp phenomenon.

~ If waking a newborn and immediately changing their diaper, wait until they completely finish their stretching routine before opening the diaper.  Stretching causes gaseousness, and gaseousness leads to…well, we’ve already covered that.

~ Sadly enough and much to my disappointment, boys do not actually have less crevices to clean during a HAZMAT Cleanup than girls. Although my husband assures me that as baby boys become more anatomically proportionate, their situation will become less crevicy.  I certainly hope he’s right. 

~ Cleaning out crevices must be done as quickly as humanly possible – and perhaps as quickly as inhumanly possible.  The risk of unprotected explosion during crevice cleanout is a Code Red Danger.

~ If, while holding a newborn, you find yourself hearing (and possibly feeling) from their hinder the most wet, splattery, explosive sound that you’ve ever heard, your first reaction will be to jump up and hold the baby away from you, just KNOWING that you’ve just been completely plastered in poo.  However, this is one unfounded fear – the sound effects are MUCH worse than the product.  You will be amazed when, upon opening said diaper, there is mysteriously little evidence for the incredible nuclear explosions that you just thought that you witnessed.

IMG_2873 ~ You may find yourself aghast at the manners of a newborn, as they tend to find the most delightful time to poo is WHILE they are eating.  But do not dismay – they DO learn a bit more couth.  Very soon, they will simply stop eating for a second, scrunch up their faces, poo explosively, and then quite satisfiedly go straight back to eating. 

~ You, however, may find your appetite completely missing.

As this post is ONLY meant to be helpful (and not at all to frighten people away from having babies, ruin anyone’s lunch, or make anyone feel the least bit queasy), feel free to add your own advice as well!

27 thoughts on “On How to Diaper a Newborn.

    1. It’s hard to tell – it seemed light brown, but now it’s all falling out, so we’ll see how it grows back. Ali’s grew back lighter after her fallout, but hers was much darker to start with…

  1. A diaper is in no way equipped to contain the entirety of a code red explosion, and it will have spread up to the armpits and down to the knees. And, as you are not-yet-overly-adept at changing the clothes on a small baby in the first place, you will probably manage to spread it to the few remaining places the poo didn’t get during the initial gaseousness incident while attempting to strip filth covered garments from said baby.

    1. Oh yes, too true.

      I was handling one of those diapers the other day – that then turned into the poo-while-getting-changed ones, which meant I had ruined two diapers and countless wipes, and Ali wanted something. I said “Not now, baby – I’m cleaning up poo from everywhere!!”

      And she summed it up perfectly by saying, “Oh how HORRIBLE!!!!!”

  2. Hahaha, love it! I mean, I don’t love the explosive poo, I just love your take on it. :) I think it is kind of like childbirth, you forget the horror of it all once you’ve passed that stage. :)

    Thanks for the mention!

  3. So, so true! And the faces my kids made while pooping were hysterical. The “poo while nursing” was one of the yuckiest to me at least emotionally. We’d be having this blissful, quiet time and I’m all feeling like Lady Madonna nursing the most sweetest, most beautiful infant in the universe and, oh my, have you ever witnessed anything so awesome, so beautiful, so peaceful, blah, blah, blah, when out of nowhere WHILE NURSING comes this horrific farty sound, followed by the unmistakable FEEL of poo hitting a diaper at warp speed. Moment shattered.

    And yes, I think we’ve all had our stunning moments of infant poo mess in the changing area. Willow had an explosion that resulting in my finding dried poo for DAYS in places like the baby-shoe bin many feet away from the changing table, and on the noise machine across the room. NAST-Y!

    1. It can seriously ruin the moment! And it makes it all the more “Characteristic” when it’s a boy-child. You just can’t help but say, “JUST LIKE A MAN”, when they look up at you with that satisfied look on their face…

  4. One must preload the pile of clean diaper wipes when dealing with such a situation. Otherwise you are pretty much guaranteeing they will have sunk to the bottom of the dispenser or that they will refuse to un-cling from each other. Which, considering the job they have to do, is mighty understandable.

    1. You made me laugh out loud!! Then Ali wanted to know what i was laughing at… hard to explain the crappy job of wet wipes to a four year old.

  5. I think there could be a new sport in newborn poop for competitive parents. Place babies in a row and see who can squirt furthest. Extra points for explosive power, spray trajectory, and color.
    The worst story I ever heard about newborn poop happened to my brother-in-law. He was lifting his daughter to put the new diaper on, turned to respond to my sister, and while his mouth was open got sprayed. After that story, I didn’t mind cleaning up the explosions on the carpet and the walls anymore.

    1. LOVE the idea of the contest. Kinda like the “Watermelon Seed Spittin'” contests we’re stereotyped with down here in the South (not to say I haven’t participated in one before, but still…)

      And wow – that diaper story is the stuff of nightmares. Truly.

  6. My Beege was a champion crapper. One time, I was with my mum out in the country at a stained glass studio. We were the only ones in the studio except for the artist, it was the middle of winter and it was really quiet except for the lovely classical music he had playing. My darling 2 1/2 month old was sleeping on my shoulder as we looked around. All of a sudden, the wettest, most disgusting noise came from her diaper and broke the silence. I had to take her out to the car and change her in the cold on the back seat. It was horrible. It was up to her neck and down to her ankles. I ended up throwing out the white onesie outfit (what was I thinking?) she was wearing, as well as the receiving blanket (that was thankfully just a simple cotton one) that she’d stained anyway, so I used to finish wiping her off when I ran out of wipes.
    Other than that, she saved all of her explosive poops for her dad; either that or I was just better at diapers than him. ;)

    1. Oh, I feel your pain. I had a similarly horrid experience with Ali… and used all my wipes, napkins, tissue, and already-used-tissues in the car to clean it up.

  7. I always giggled at the thought of using a ‘pee-pee tee-pee’ until the reality hit! We immediately covered my son with a wipe or cloth diaper as soon as we took his diaper off. He ‘christened’ the walls in our house and in our church’s brand-new building b/c we weren’t quick enough a couple of times! :)

    1. Nice!! Noah’s only done that to Chris – I’m still feeling rather invincible, so am not using anything to cover it up yet. I’m SURE I’ll regret that very soon.

  8. Ok, so Jenna never did any of that, not even peeing on me. I am now horrified at thought of the constant sprinkler system from our little man in utero. How have you handled that one? or have you had to?

  9. So funny that you write this on the day after Landon had his most horrific mustardy diaper explosion yet. I took him to where I work to meet the people there for the first time yesterday, and when my boss, yes, my BOSS was holding him – he had a massive poop that went through the diaper, through the onesie and covered the inside of his pants, which I had to remove for the remainder of the visit and put inside a ziploc bag -don’t worry, I was sure to keep up with its whereabouts of that bag so as not to find it between the washer and dryer much later :)

  10. OMG. I had repressed an awful event with Ella. I think she was preparing for the long shot contest as it made it on the wall. Guess we will be back in this soon as we can bring home baby Maggie from the NICU.

  11. Once upon a time, there was a newbie mother, changing her newborn child, who, without warning, threw a tickertape crap parade all over her at the ripe young age of four days old. Never before was I, uh, I mean, “she” so embarrassed. Had to wash that out of my (her) hair, yo.

  12. Very amusing!

    Almost two years later I don’t really recall the explosive poop stage being a big deal for us. We were terrified of it happening for months after being regaled with stories by my brother-in-law but I think we got off exceptionally lightly.

    I mean, we did had an incident where she hit the wall – but that was once, and it was a pretty easy clean up. While I did get pooped on once or twice, I can count the number of blow-outs she had on a single hand. I think being teeny helped with the lack of blowouts (maybe the secret is to buy super huge diapers?) Then we started EC’ing at five months and didn’t have deal with poopy diapers for the next eight months. It’s a lot of extra diaper changes round the clock, but not having to deal with poo made it totally worth it for us :)

  13. Agreed, any slight change in temperature and environment is bound to cause an explosion from one end or another. There are too many tiny crevices to clean and then I become paranoid that I’ve done a poor job and my baby is bound to get some freak infection. (oops, my c.c. is coming out)

  14. Oh my gosh, HILARIOUS!
    I was literally crying reading this post. Like, so-many-tears-you-definitely-can’t-see-a-thing crying. My three year-old son blew out the top (backside) of his diaper all. the. time. Ruined just about every onesie that I intended on keeping for child #2…
    And she, at four months old now, is soooo gassy when she’s waking up and stretching. You totally got this entire post right. Love it, love it, love it.
    My only additional advice would be to change diapers at night with extreme caution. Consider pinching yourself, or some other way to ensure that you, the adult taking on this scary task, is FULLY AWAKE. Otherwise, it makes it difficult to move away fast enough when you are juuuuuust about to wipe (baby’s feet in the air, butt angled DIRECTLY AT YOU) and your beautiful child uses that second to puuusssshh that extra bit out. Not that this ever happened to me. Oh no…
    All you can do is make light of the situation… and you do that very well! Thanks for the post!

    1. Yes!! Those middle of the night feedings AND changings are rough. I don’t know how many times I fell asleep nursing at 3am, then woke up at 5am with a sleeping baby and an EXTREMELY sore boob!

  15. oh gosh as I read this my face was scrunched up then I peeked down at the photo and thought, “yup, that’s about right”

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