Healthy Living

May 29, 2020

Cloth Diaper Venture

Jairus has been rocking the cloth-diaper bum for the better part of this year now and I finally feel like less of a rookie capable of writing about how it’s going! My biggest reasons why are the impact of disposables in our landfills, the chemicals in disposable diapers, and long-term: the money we could be saving. Here’s a post that spells it all out for you if you, like me, were unaware.

I had been thinking about cloth diapering for a couple years, but never seriously, and every time I looked into it all I could find were a bunch of conflicting opinions from crunchy moms and sponsored posts. It was an overwhelming hole of information and starting felt… defeating.

When Coronavirus hit and people started going crazy over toilet paper and wipes and everything baby, I knew it was time to finally take the plunge. After all, Jairus has another year+ in diapers and we have at least two years with the next baby ahead of us, with who knows how many more kids after that.

So done with the excuses, I decided just to start somewhere, full on trial and error mode. Between the hefty investment upfront and wanting to keep our journey as sustainable as possible, I rounded up a gently-used load of multiple styles from a friend, Facebook Marketplace, and Amazon.

After our first week, this is what I wrote:

Cloth bottom bum.

I wasn’t wrong when we anticipated this thing would be full of learning. It hasn’t been the easiest week.

First, we are in the phase of him turning over and crawling away in an instant every time we try to change him. Clothes clearly included! It’s almost a two person job, even if that’s just a big brother distraction, to get those buttons perfectly in place around his little waist rather than slapping on the velcro of a disposable wherever it lands as he’s taking off. We’re learning just how each kind fits him and becoming a bit more efficient though!

His teeny thighs make it hard. We’re having some leakage mostly when he’s sitting in his high chair and his position creates a gap around his legs as he’s also chugging water.
JJ is always a solid pooper but he decided to switch that up on us when we went into cloth. I’m so thankful Drew hadn’t left for work yet when we experienced the first blow out 😅

I definitely did not test out the bidet pressure before using it the first time. Yikes, thing is strong and it repelled everywhere. I also didn’t think a spray pail was necessary – wrong. Thank you Amazon for the earlier than estimated delivery yesterday!

But I’m not ready to run for the hills. We’re just getting started and already figuring out what works for us best in terms of types, brands, a routine, where to put things, etc. and we’ve already saved about 20 diapers from hitting a landfill in just a few days. That to me, is worth navigating through a tough start 😌

A few months later, I can actually say that cloth diapers have just become part of the norm and it wasn’t nearly as scary as it seemed in the beginning.

About a month in, we did indeed go back to disposables overnight. I don’t know if that will be permanent but we had a couple of boxes in our closet still that we’re barely making a dent in and Jairus was leaking through almost nightly. When he started sleeping through the night out of nowhere for the first time since he was born, we decided to choose a full night of sleep over waking him up for changes. With another baby on the way, we’re sticking to that decision for now before it’s no longer an option. One disposable diaper per day isn’t perfection but it is so much better than where we came from.

And doing anything better or to reduce our footprint is more than nothing at all. Every contribution matters to our sweet planet.

Believe me, I love the cute prints and taking pictures of this tiny little bum, but cloth diapering is not about that and it is NOT glorious. It is hard, extra work on top of all other things mom-life and it is a sacrifice. There have been plenty of times where I’m spraying out a messy crap that I think back to how easy the days were when I could just roll it up and toss it, and sometimes we can even add a mad (over his diaper change of course) crying baby outside the bathroom door to that.

Equal, if not greater, though, comes the joy of freshly washed cloth diapers ready for their next use reminding me of how worth it this venture is. A small inconvenience to our daily lives to make a big, healthy impact on our family and our world.

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