When I was pregnant I planned and was lucky to get a natural homebirth, breastfeeding was a given (I’d lived in Asia and seen the very dodgy marketing of Infant formula over there, and having spent almost 9 months growing this baby I didn’t want to put anything in it that I hadn’t made myself) so cloth nappies seemed to fit in with the whole crunchy parent thing.
I was really lucky to win a months free nappy service which meant I didn’t have to think about buying anything at all for a while, then I started to cut down the amount of nappies I got from the service and I bought my own wraps and nappies – I found that my son went through phases of heavy wetting that the services’ prefolds (layers of cloth sewn up to make them more absorbable that you put inside a waterproof cover) just couldn’t cope with.
I have to admit I became very nerdy about nappies, I still know that a motherase nappy can hold almost a pint of liquid and I became literate in nappy speak – aplix, poppers, gusseted legs……. Buying nappies was fun although today the range of funky nappy wraps is much wider than it was back in my day.
When my son was about 9 months old I bought some eco friendly disposables for a camping trip and I found them so much hassle, I was always looking for bins, with the cloth nappies I got into a really easy habit of carrying just what I needed to go out, a couple of nappies ready folded, with liners, in wraps, a wet bag, a couple of cloths for washing and some bum cream. When I changed him I just popped the dirty stuff in the wet bag, job done until I got home and it went in the bucket or in the machine if there was a full load. Being horribly competitive I used to race disposable mums in changing rooms, I always won, I was quicker at popping a real nappy on my wiggly son than they were with disposables.
I think people are sometimes put off by the choices of real nappies and the idea that they are a hassle – the choices are fun because you can get exactly what you want for your child, and they are definatly not a hassle!
If you are just starting out on a cloth nappy adventure, have fun, I can’t say I’d like to do it again but I do have nostalgic thoughts of happy times.