Baby Milestones: The First Diaper Change

newborn baby

I will never, ever forget the first time I changed my daughter Eleni’s diaper.

It stands out so vividly in my mind. Eleni was my first child, and suddenly, all at once, it was she and I in the room. In that moment, it occurred to me: I was solely responsible for the care and well-being of this newborn.

This was a baby milestone moment for me, whereby I was getting acquainted with my new baby, and she with me, and I must figure out what I needed to do for her -- for the rest of her life.

I had a C-section delivery, so as I was busy having these epiphanies, I was also dealing with my own pain and discomfort. Needless to say, as a new mom, I found myself feeling somewhat vulnerable in that moment.

I remember it like it was yesterday. The nurse came into my room and said, “Mrs. Truitt, your baby is here.” They rolled her in, and I struggled to sit up and hold her. She was bright eyed and working me over. We sat there for over 40 minutes, while I breastfed her and spoke to her. There were a lot of kisses, too.

After a while, I thought to myself, ‘she hasn’t cried once.’ I didn’t smell any signs of her having soiled her diaper, and I thought all of this was very strange for a newborn. So I got up and shuffled to the changing table to check.

When I opened her diaper, it was full of that dark, gooey meconium. I remember saying to her, “You dirty girl! You never even screeched to let me know there was anything there!” I didn’t even know all of the ins and outs of how to change a diaper yet, but I gave it my best first try!

At that moment, I realized that she wasn’t going to help her amateur new mom out with cues -- I was going to have to check her diaper to see what treasures she released on a schedule.

I will never forget that moment for as long as I live. Now, five years later, Eleni is still somewhat reserved, and just like that first diaper change, I am kept on my feet, always learning from her, and about her, all the time.

Photo by Ádám Szabó on Unsplash

by Janine Truitt