Sunday, May 31, 2009

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And They All Thought I Was Crazy

“You’re going to wash them YOURSELF??”
“Just wait until your kid has diarrhea.”
“But you’ll have a diaper service, right?”
“Don’t babies get way more diaper rash that way?”
“That’s great, but I’m way too busy to do all that extra work!”

Throughout my first pregnancy, as my research on cloth diapers turned into serious thought and serious thought became reality – I heard it all. Some folks were supportive, lots thought I was insane, and most were at least a little bit skeptical. But I am nothing if not stubborn, and no one was going to tell me that this decision was one I couldn’t handle – or one that would hurt my baby in any way.

Many women will agree that a strange sort of mental metamorphosis can occur while you contemplate becoming a mama for the first time. Amid all the prenatal daydreams of soft blankies and powdery smells, our minds wake up to the notion that we are being charged with caring for a brand new little person. A whole (albeit tiny) person who is unable to meet any of his/her own needs will be placed in our care. And once the pregnant-mama brain starts processing what that really might mean – suddenly some things that never seemed quite so important before loom large on the radar screen.

I went from being someone who never recycled because it was inconvenient to the person in the house who drives everyone a little nuts making sure that nothing is thrown away that shouldn’t be.

I was someone who had no strong views on childbirth & pain medication… by halfway through my pregnancy I was convinced I wanted to have a completely natural birth, and I set about gathering as much information as I possibly could.

I knew I wanted to breastfeed exclusively and make my own baby food. And somewhere along the way, I decided I wanted to wrap my new baby’s bum in cottony cloth diapers.
I did research, I scoured cloth diaper websites, I read blogs of cloth-diapering mamas, I crunched numbers, and I did more research. I came up with a cloth diapering program that would include one-size diapers (I bought a bunch of BG 2.0s when they went on sale right before the BG 3.0 was introduced) and prefolds, snappis & Thirsties covers. My baby’s room was stocked with freshly laundered diapers, just waiting for the arrival of our much-anticipated little one.

I was a little dismayed when it took me nearly six weeks to get the hang of cloth diapering full-time. Our little lady was long and skinny , and the one size diapers were HUGE on her, and the prefold/cover combination was simply too bulky to fit under any clothes. And in February and March in Michigan – clothing is not optional. But once I got the hang of things, and my skinny mini plumped up a bit – I quickly realized that I *love* cloth diapers. Folding and stuffing can be relaxing, and the sweet piles of cute diapers warms my heart right up.
My baby girl turned one 2 months ago – and we still love our fluffy cloth diapers. Our stash has expanded to include Happy Heiny’s, Fuzzi Bunz, MonkeyDoodlez, Thirsties Fitted and some one-size BG 3.0s. And since I’m due with Baby #2 in August, I’ve been motivated to start hunting down some options that will enable me to cloth diaper from day one.

And so, to all those who thought I was just another crazy pregnant lady…
- Yup, I wash them myself. It’s only a couple more loads each week, and it’s not hard.
- No, diarrhea doesn’t make cloth diapering any worse (messy poop is messy poop – no matter what kind of diaper it’s in – and my cloth diapers do a much better job at containing messes than ‘sposies ever did!)
- No, I don’t have a diaper service.
- Nah - my daughter hardly EVER gets diaper rash – and it clears up fastest when her skin can breathe in a cloth diaper.
- I’m busy too, but honestly – it doesn’t feel like extra work to me. For lots of reasons (environmental, financial, health & more) I believe in cloth diapering. It’s important to me, and I’m happy to do it for my kid(s).


-- By Katie B.

34 comments:

Upstatemomof3 said...

Oh yes yes yes!! I have heard all of those things and I agree completely. I was throwing away the boxes my contacts came in this morning and Big Brother stopped me. "Mommy those can go in the recycling garbage!!" Ah I have taught him well. :)

the monkey's mama said...

now, the question is, do they all still think you are crazy? I hope they see how wise your decisions are for your family's budget and for the environment!

dannyscotland said...

I'm in love with my cloth diapers, too. I've been trying to "convert" one of my friends who just had a baby, but she can't stay home with him, and her husband refuses to use cloth. She's really bummed.

Kristen said...

I've been trying to convert my friends to cloth diapers as well... it's amazing how many people are turned off for the smallest reasons!

Kelly said...

I love the look on people's faces when I say, "Yes, I do launder them myself. No I don't use a service." People think I am crazy, but I am okay with that because I know I am doing the best thing for my daughter!

Julia said...

I heard it too! "We'll see how long that lasts!" Ha! My son is about to be 6 months old & I'm soooo in love with cloth. Since he's also a long skinny baby, I used strictly prefolds & covers initially, but the BG worked well for us, too. I REALLY want to try out other brands when we get some extra cash.

And yeah - some still think I'm crazy.

Brena said...

I started as one of the doubters. When I researched cloth I read that there was no way to get them clean enough and as a result I was risking severe infection. Thank goodness his skin is just plain old too sensitive for sposies and I went back to researching cloth on dr orders, it's been a year now and I haven't looked back!

Jennifer said...

I am just about to start to cloth diaper my babe, now 10 months, and this post is this post really inspires me. Thanks!!

Erin said...

Oh my, you sound just like me! My daughter was too skinny too! But luckly she was born in the summer time in the south so clothing is always optional :)

Denise said...

Good for you not listening to them!!! I was afraid to cloth diaper for many years because of all the negative comments I heard about it. I wish there had been a way to do research on cloth diapering way back in 1987 when my oldest was born.

MaryAnne said...

I switched to cloth after one too many blowouts in disposables with my first daughter, and all of your points are so true in my experience, great post!

Desiree Fawn said...

Great article!!
I can't wait to be a full time cloth diaper mama!

Thrifty Mama B said...

That makes me a Crazy Nonpregnant Lady b/c I have heard that same stuff from people. Guess us "crazy" folks gotta stick together right ;)

AScott said...

That was really cute!! "(messy poop is messy poop – no matter what kind of diaper it’s in"

So true!! Even my husband refuses to change poopy diapers since I went to cloth. Honestly, it's the same poop that was in a disposable! You just have to shake it off in the toilet! Geesh!

Hannah said...

I've gotten plenty of negative/suspicious comments, but I have been pleasantly surprised by the encouraging ones too:

Last night at my baby shower, one lady was telling me how "nice cloth diapers are nowadays, you don't even have to pin them because they have these great covers!" (her grandchildren are cloth-diapered). I think the biggest fans are older people who actually used the "old kind" and have now seen the better quality kind available now.

Sugar & Spice said...

Love this post... : )

A Psych Mommy said...

cute pics! It took me awhile to transition to full time cloth diapering, too--probably about the same time as you--but we love it now and it's been 8 months!

Jenney said...

Um...did I write this post? Just checking :o) I didn't start CDing until my second was 4 months old...but I am not looking back. The recycling comment cracked me up. Tonight I brought home all of the pop cans and plastic water bottles from a cookout. I'm sure they thought I was nuts, but I was NOT about to let all of that hit the trash can!

Senior Family said...

yep heard those things too .. i think it is awesome and your DD is cute ! good for you for CD !!

Cooke Family said...

I loved this post! I have an 18month old whom I just started CDing. I finally got sick of wasting $$$ on disposables AND I wanted to do more for the environment. When I first started researching CD, I got the same questions and a "why would you want to do that?" question. Ugh...Needless to say, I let those opinions go in one ear and out the other. And I'm glad I did. I get great satisfaction from not having to throw a diaper away. And when they're all clean and neatly stacked, I get the warm fuzzies. Not to mention, my little one is adorable in her BGs. Thanks for sharing your story.

Fertilized said...

I also have been told/looked at funny for the same reasons. It's not that much extra work at all.

Great post!

Tiffany said...

This was an awesome post. Thank you!!!! I can't wait to start cloth diapering my little man.

Sara in Seattle said...

great to hear other mom's experiences!

God Displayed in my Family said...

I know right!!! Lol, why do people have to see the hardship in everything? A little effort makes for such wise spending! I love that our kids are seeing that we care about making healthier decisions! Good job mama!

Kelly said...

Katie B - Since I know you have done ample research I am assumming you are using infant size prefolds and not trying to use the reg. size prefolds. I have been a prefold CDing mama from the start and haven't had a problem with them fitting my little ones. I too have had long skinny guys. For the first time, with #3 I was excited to use pocket diapers at the newborn stage (I am a recent convert to pockets) but alas I had to revert back to my prefolds and newborn covers right now (#3 is 2 wks old) b/c the pockets are still too big. With the exception to the Rocky Mountain Diapers that I have (I have 2) They seem to fit her well even as small as she is. Best of luck with #2 and CDing from the beginning.

Katie said...

Thanks for all the FABULOUS comments!! (I actually wrote this post a few months ago - my little gal is now almost 16 months old!)

I still love cloth diapers and am looking forward to wrapping my new little one in soft cloth from the beginning (yup, we were using infant prefolds... just the combo of the diaper plus the cover made it so her clothes didn't fit... maybe my technique just needed some refining!!)

Thanks again!! :)

pamnkevin said...

My father thought I was crazy...he gave it a week...that was back in August almost a year ago. I love cloth diapering. I try to convert everyone I know with babies to them.

Jackie said...

Yes - I totally agree!!!!! What a great post!

Slee said...

Yes. All of this!
When I tell people that I use cloth diapers, the old women roll their eyes and say "it won't last"

yes, i say, YES IT WILL!
i'm crazy too.

momof3dolls said...

My sisters think I'm crazy, having to deal w/poo and washing them. My mom has been supportive. She even tried to make some for me. Didn't turn out too good, though. lol!

Brittany said...

I think half my family is just humoring me, thinking I will give up after I have to wash them the first time. But I am still trying to convert my sisters and friends to switch to cloth!

hosiewosie said...

haha, I've heard all those questions and have pretty much the same answers. Isn't cloth great?

Becky said...

Yes, yes and yes! I have heard all these things too! Everyone usually gives me a look and then say, "well, good luck with that". Everyone is amazed at how serious I am (and that I've been CDing for almost a year).

Carol said...

Thanks for sharing your cloth diapering story - it sounds very similar to my experience.