I started cloth diapering over 10 months ago. My children were about 6 months old and 30 months old when we switched. We started with prefolds and covers, and we got some hemp for over nights and pockets for my husband/errands. Within two months, we were using cloth 99% of the time. And within another two months, I only had one in diapers as my daughter decided to finally potty train (herself). Life got easy – I had a routine, and things were working great.
Then one day I decided to strip our hemp and prefolds because they were starting to smell. It took longer than I thought, so I just used two microfiber inserts at night and hoped for the best. And well, I learned he didn’t even need that. I had noticed the prefold/hemp combination hadn’t been completely soaked before, but I was afraid to try less. And having to use two microfiber at night proved to me he didn’t need all that stuffing. So, I got to try some new options. I settled on Econobums at night if I was changing, and a bumGenius 4.0 or KaWaii pocket stuffed with an Econobum prefold if my husband had our son that night. I was actually happy about this. It meant I got to use the hemp and more pockets during the day. They are cuter than our covers and are trimmer. All was going well, and I had a new routine.
And then I ordered some flats. We are expecting #3 this summer, and I knew these would be great for the baby. I also thought that would be good for a trimmer option to prefolds for our son. The first day went fine. I had to remember to change more often, but it wasn’t a huge deal. I expected this since I had a few less layers of cotton on him. Then came the second day – a day I learned my son had changed his habits! I first put him in a flat with a Snappi. My plan was to change him about an hour later, just before we went to church. Within 20 to 30 minutes, there was a puddle! He had leaked straight through the flat on to the floor. I thought it was just because I hadn’t used a cover. So, I snappied another flat on him and put a cover on top. Less than 45 minutes later, he had leaked. I thought he might have sat in something (like water from the bath tub since he likes to pour water on the floor). But, by the time we got to church, it was clear that he had soaked the flat. I changed him into his hemp pocket, and thought we were through with leaks. Less than 3 hours later, he was leaking again! The hemp combination had lasted us at least 4 hours in the past (when we are out and about without a good spot to change him).
On the way home from church, I started thinking. His night time diaper hadn’t been soaked. But, he hadn’t drunk too much in the afternoon. Instead, he drank a bunch that morning. He was becoming more like his sister – able to drink two sippy cups of milk or water in a short period of time. This is what had made her a heavy wetter, and now he is following in her footsteps. So, now I have to rethink all of my diapering again. I have to “monitor” his drinking and consider that when I diaper him. On normal days, I can go with one flat pad folded for two to three hours. I can go with a hemp insert for 3-4 hours. But, other days I know I need to “double up” on his stuffing.
The challenge can be fun, but sometimes it is just easier to “overstuff” just in case!
By Stephanie U
Stephanie is a soon-to-be mom of three, all under the age of 4 years old. She switched to cloth diapers of money reasons, and now is addicted to them.