Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Our Cloth Diapering Journey

When I had my son in April of 2009 cloth diapering was the furthest thing from my mind! I was exhausted, a little overwhelmed, and we had over 600 disposable diapers of all sizes that had been given to us at the baby shower. One less thing for me to worry about. I had thought about, and dismisses the idea of cloth diapers as a "No Way, Not Ever" months before during my pregnancy. I was sure they were too messy, to much work, and something I just couldn't tackle in addition to new motherhood!

We had the opportunity, because of our baby shower gifts, to try all of the major brands (Huggies, Pampers, and Luvs) and most of the local generics. We never had a problem with rashes or irritation, but the generics tended to leak, so we went with Luvs when we did have to buy and I honestly didn't give diapering much of a thought beyond making sure that the trash got out so the house wouldn't smell.

When our son turned 4 months old and we had to move him up to a different size he started leaking through anything that wasn't Luvs brand. We gave all our other brands to friends and stocked up on Luvs, which didn't bother me at all. After all, Luvs are the cheapest brand by a good bit. Going from disposables to cloth never even crossed my mind at that time. As I said, I had already dismissed cloth diapers as something that would just be too inconvenient for us and our lifestyles.

Fast forward to May of 2010. During our first trip back home to Ohio in 2.5 years we ran out of the Luvs diapers my family had so thoughtfully stock piled for us in preparation for our visit. We only had a few days left in our trip, so didn't want to buy a huge package of diapers to get us through, but the only small packages of diapers we could find were in Huggies and Pampers brands. There had been many recent reports of the newest Pampers causing children to break out in blisters and rashes, so we went with Huggies. Before we had a chance to open them though, we found some Luvs that we had overlooked, so stuck with them and packed the Huggies away in our suitcases to come home. 

A few days after arriving back in Idaho, I needed to change our son's morning diaper and opened the pack of Huggies that we had brought with us from Ohio. He had slept in Luvs, I put him in the Huggies and within an hour he had a poopie diaper so I changed him again. There was a small red area that looked a little like it was developing into a sore. I thought it was strange that his bottom had got irritated so quickly from a small amount of poop, but I put a little Desitin on it and re-diapered him in another Huggies diaper.

Two hours later his bottom and private area was a mass of large, angry looking blisters and red rashes! Changing him took both my husband and I. He screamed and thrashed and kicked, desperate to get away from the pain we were causing by simply changing him. We determined it was the Huggies, and the minute we stopped using them he started to heal. It was a terrifying experience for all three of us though, and it really got me thinking! 

I'd already been thinking that we might try cloth diapering when we had our next child. I'm not stupid, and knew that disposable diapers have a negative impact on our environment. Several of my friends do it or had been talking about switching, and I thought that, just maybe, it would be something we might look into when it was time for us to have another child. I'd never thought about doing it for the son we already had until this Huggies incident. My fear for his health coupled with my rage at the disposable diapers themselves for "betraying" my trust and hurting my child fueled me into action and I started researching cloth diapers in earnest. Not for our future children, but for the one we have now.

At first I was completely overwhelmed! I'd had no idea that there were so many different kinds of cloth diapers. I had no idea what any of the acronyms and terminology meant! The up-front cost was a little startling, and I wasn't sure where to start. We tried with some cheap pre-folds and I almost gave up! No matter what I did I couldn't manage to make them fit correctly, the plastic diaper covers were terrible, and to top it off I was terrified of poking my highly wiggily baby with the stupid "safety" pins. (I am here to tell you that they don't seem so safe when you're trying to put them in a diaper being worn by your child!) I was ready to give up before I had really began.

I decided to try one more time. I asked for help from some of my cloth diapering friends and I went to my online researching with a new will. I found even more amazing reasons why we should cloth diaper! For the environment, for our son's health, and for our budget, we've decided to give it a real hard core go!

The initial start up cost was a worry, but with a little help from a friend I discovered an online store where I can get some AIO/AI2, one size cloth diapers for cheap and in some amazing colors! We've ordered several and fell in love! We ended up buying several of different brands (Fuzzi Bunz became a quick favorite!) and went at it with gusto! I never did find the right kind of diaper to keep my son from leaking at night, so we kept sposies around for that, and very quickly it seemed my son was Potty Learning and no longer in need of diapers except in the nap/night times. I was a little bummed out, truth be told. I had barely started scraping the surface of the Fluff World!

Luckily we have been blessed and are expecting our second little miracle in August of 2011. With this little one we plan to CD from day one if possible, and I am venturing out to see what other kinds of diapers I might love to use! I look forward to having much more to share with you as I explore the ever growing world of Cloth Diapering.

I hope that you'll enjoy reading about it as much as I enjoy sharing it with you!

Thank you for reading and Happy Diapering!

1 comment:

  1. Hey there! I felt the same way you did when I first started cding. I started with 3 Smartipants when my daughter was 6 months old and since then I've been on a quest to try any and every brand that I can get my hands on. The acronyms and initials were so confusing, but now I'm giving other mamas tips and advice! My daughter is only a couple months older than your son, she was born February 09. I'm really excited to read about your journey!!! :)