I have always enjoyed reading my baby book or finding an old journal to re-discover life changing moments. First steps, first date, meeting my husband, chiropractic school and all the new thoughts I was exposed to, births of my children…all these events changed me from who I was before to who I was going to be.
There are many decisions we make daily that forever alter how we live and parent. One huge decision for our family was switching to cloth diapers. I very clearly remember my first experience with cloth diapers. It makes me laugh to remember my true excitement over pee/poop catchers…well I suppose that hasn’t changed much!
One day in October 2005, as we were heading out of town I chased down the UPS truck (seriously) to get my first order of cloth diapers. I had no idea what to do with them but the fact that I was actually touching and feeling a new stage in my life put me on a “fluffy” Cloud 9. I was definitely a kid on Christmas morning.
We were heading to my mother-in-law’s house for the weekend and as soon as we arrived I started washing my 2 dozen unbleached Chinese prefolds and 6 prowrap covers from granitesmith on Ebay—at that time I assumed one wash would do. I had no clue that when it came to prefolds you needed to do several washes to prep them to their full absorbency.
The whole weekend I had to defend my decision to cloth diaper because every time I put one on Haven it leaked.
My sweet mother-in-law very politely asked, “Are they supposed to leak?”
I was not discouraged by this bumpy start. I called my best friend who had walked me through my first purchase. She explained that I needed to wash prefolds in HOT water 5 or 6 times for them to adequately fluff up for proper absorbency.
So, that is how I began my venture into cloth diapers. My best friend, Melisa, is really the one who got me interested in cloth diapers. I had no clue where to start and she provided me with all the answers I needed. She gave me a website and literally told me exactly what to order. Thankfully, our son was a good fit for prefolds and Proraps! I don’t know what I would have done if this was a bad match for him.
This first batch of diapers lasted Haven all through his diapering days (15 months to 3+years). I did buy 4 Happy Heinys to supplement his stash. I honestly thought that I was THE coolest mom for having Happy Heinys. With my limited knowledge and experience I felt they were the best cloth diaper ever made.
I didn’t have a lot of money to buy more so I needed to wash daily, sometimes twice, in order for my diapers to last. I preferred using the HH, which is why I would sometimes do two loads of laundry.
As we made more money I was able to try some other types of diapers but still my exposure was limited, as I had not yet discovered the world of online cloth diapering communities. By the time my 3rd child was born in December 2006, I was fully immersed in online forums and had learned of a vast world of “fluffiness”.
Even after months of surfing the internet and frequenting cloth diaper message boards, I was still learning the lingo. I was on the journey to find what diaper worked best. To make matters worse, I soon discovered that even though I had “paid my dues” with my son and reached stash nirvana, my daughter was born and none of what I had discovered worked for her!
A whole new set of questions surfaced.
What works best for chubby thighs?
Why does she have this rash when I put on a pocket diaper with suedecloth inner or a fitted with serged edges?
Again I was at my wits end (or was it the end of my Paypal money I had reached).
I put in months of internet time and more importantly bought and sold DOZENS of diapers to find what works. I attribute that persistence to my stubbornness and well, honestly, my obsession with utterly cute fluffiness.
There are a couple of key points to take from my experience:
*Don’t assume that the new baby will be able to wear all of the previous child’s diapers. Some may work, while others will have fit or sensitivity issues.
*Don’t be afraid to start from scratch. If you find a system or fabric isn’t working for your new baby don’t give up! There are so many choices in cloth diapers, making it easy to find alternatives.
*It is possible to cloth diaper more than one child at a time! They may have different stashes but it is just as simple and a lot cheaper to cloth diaper than use disposables. Cloth Diapers Times 2!
When it comes to children you never really get anything fully figured out. The minute you think you do they grow 3 inches, lose 5 pounds or suddenly have a wool allergy. The answer is to have an absolute (cloth diapering is the best choice) and be committed to finding a solution to whatever problem arises.
Of course that is what I am here for right…to help you find solutions to cloth diaper problems and to tempt you with some amazing diapers!