A few weeks ago, a family I know passed down a huge box of cloth diapers to me. The box had an entire set of covers and prefolds and an entire set of Fuzzibunz–hundreds of dollars worth of cloth diapers and accessories. Truly a generous blessing! I had always said that I would be open to giving cloth a try, but probably only if someone gave me a set.
Not thinking that would ever happen, obviously.
Getting a free set of nice cloth diapers is a pretty big deal. I felt like I owed it to myself to give cloth a serious chance and discern if this was something that worked for my family. I have a good friend who sells all kinds of cloth diapers and is something of an expert now (you’re fabulous, Nicole!:), and she taught me how to use and care for everything, and even helped me troubleshoot and issue or two. I tried both the covers and the Fuzzibunz (and liked the Fuzzibunz better actually).
Despite pretty decent “success” in my foray into cloth (i.e. no leaking!), the short story is that cloth diapering isn’t something that works for my family right now.
After several days of sticking with it, I felt a peace about choosing to pass on the box of cloth diapers to a dear friend who was thrilled to bits to have them. I think it comes down to a lifestyle change involving extra time and work that would fall virtually entirely to me, and I couldn’t find in myself a deep enough conviction that this was what I was supposed to be doing for my family. When I took into consideration all of the multitude of factors that describe me, my family and everything about our life right now, cloth was “a nice thing to do,” but wasn’t justified deeply enough beyond that.
True confession now: I felt inordinately guilty for a brief couple of days about choosing to stick with disposables. So many families I look up to happen use cloth, and I started to wonder if they were more “evolved” than me in some way. My worries ranged from semi-legitimate to ridiculous:
Should I be more worried about the environment? Should I be more worried about the chemicals in disposable diapers hurting my kids? Should I be more ready to sacrifice in this way to save money on diapers considering our financial situation? Am I being selfish?
(Not to mention I dreaded telling my sweet friend who had spent so much time enthusiastically teaching me about everything and assuring me I’d fall in love with cloth.)
As with so many other of those little insecurities that I fight sometimes, I started to doubt, doubt, doubt and worry, worry, worry. I am happy to say that the Deceiver had a relatively short-lived field day shaking me up though, because the Lord mercifully took off my self-imposed blinders and reminded me of something: “For well I know the plans I have for you…” He said. Via the cute little canvas sign I have above the sink in my kids’ bathroom. 🙂
Hey Erin 🙂 I liked reading this post. I, too, have good friends (somehow its only the Catholic ones I'm talking about here) that cloth diaper as well.
My husband Sam and I have two little ones, only months apart from yours, and we've always used disposables. Being that our friends cloth diaper because of their concerns for chemicals, environment, etc, I've considered it as well. We're thinking about it for future use.
That being said, I do think we're called to think about the environment, but I agree with you that it not the most important decision our family will make. There are things of greater magnitude that I want to be SURE we get right.
In the end, I would like to try cloth diapering, and if I do, I'll let you know how it goes 😉
P.S. Thanks for mentioning the fact that we should not compare ourselves to other mothers/families, becuase it is so easy to do, and it can often lead to feeling inadequate in our own parenthood. Its a great thing to remember.
You're a great mom, and I hope you don't doubt it for a second!
P.P.S. For any of your other readers that might find my comment: My good friends recommends trying modernclothdiapers.com
They have a really really good trial program where you risk only $5 🙂 Can't beat that.
Erin – really nice post. If you haven't found a home for the cloth diapers, my niece might be interested. She switched about 6 months ago. Her son is almost two and she just gave birth TODAY to a baby girl. Praise God.
Hope you are doing well!