I had just about had it with cloth diapers. Nearly every diaper that I fastened to my spirited toddler leaked as she trolled around the playroom. I desperately wanted to keep her in cloth diapers because they were a big investment up front. Even though they save a lot of money over time, they can be a headache. It just wasn’t working. I don’t know why it took me so long to arrive at the solution of using wool. Just like everything else in the green spectrum, I had to turn it down several times before giving it a shot.
Everything about cloth diapering has been foreign to me since day one. I went from turning up my nose about cloth diapering, to diving full fledged into green living all to save a few thousand bucks. I was SO BLIND to eco friendliness that I couldn’t even fathom simple household solutions like cloth towels or reusable storage containers saving money. After all, they cost so much more than the disposable counterparts. It took me a long time to realize that I could save money by investing more up front and even longer to realize that I could save the most money by using what I already have.
I’ll admit, 85% of the reason why I agreed to give cloth diapering a shot was because they were CUTE. I’m a sucker for great clothes, so I looked for the most fashionable cloth diapers. I quickly found out that I hated them after trying desperately to make them work. When I had the chance to reuse all the diapers for a second time and avoid most of* the mistakes of the first time, I opted for Thirsties Covers and prefolds. They have worked like a dream for Audrey. My second baby is the reason why I’ve kept at cloth diapering for so long. It’s why I had to become a super sleuth about fluff.
There is a reason why there are so many blogs, books, and shops for cloth diapers. It’s like gardening. They come in all different shapes and sizes and the fulfill a huge range of problems. It helped me to start thinking of diapering as a problem to solve instead of as a cute accessory. Once I washed away all my pre-conceived notions about washing poop, it got a whole lot easier. Then, I read four words on www.theclothdiaperwhisperer.com that changed everything for me:
It’s all just cloth.
Once I saw that, my entire attitude changed. Did I worry when the diapers got frayed around the edges? No, they’re just cloth. What happened when we were out and I didn’t have my large wetbag? I used the wipes wetbag. I started looking at the clothes pile I was antsy to donate and I suddenly found so many hidden gems within. Poplin shirts can easily become handkerchiefs. Pajama bottoms make great wipes. I’ll fashion a mini baby-sling for the girls’ dolls out of my outgrown tshirts.
There I was with a mountain of cloth solutions and a big, wet problem that I couldn’t piece together. I even had two sweaters of my own in that pile! I’d love to tell you that I got out my sewing machine, felted the wool and stitched my own soaker, but I’ve been too afraid to set up my sewing machine for fear of Todzilla battling the presser foot. Instead, I used a coupon and ordered a new solution. It’s a little awkward to put a wool soaker over top of an all-in-one diaper, but it works and that’s what’s important.
Some day I’ll look back at all this with the wisdom of an experienced Mom and laugh at what I went through. Cloth diapering didn’t have to be hard. I made it that way because I wanted it to be fashionable. It’s almost like I forgot what kids DO in diapers. I’ve realized that’s no big deal either. After all, it’s all just cloth.