Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Cloth Diapers. Not Too Crappy.

I’ve always been environmentally conscience.  I grew up in Germany where no one asks, “do you recycle?” because of course.  Everyone does.  We usually fill our recycling bag faster than the trash.  I bring my own shopping and produce bags to the store.  When we had to replace our air conditioner and furnace we even shelled out the extra money for the most energy efficient models.  But the one thing I haven’t been able to get down with is cloth diapers.

I know, I know.  I can’t call myself a true tree hugger and use disposable diapers, but it was the poo situation that scared me.  What do you do about the poo?  I’ve lived through some terrible poo-tastrophes with my children.  There was that time with my firstborn when we went to take our very first family pictures.  We dressed in white shirts.  When we went for the oh-so-adorable naked baby in daddy’s hands pic, I got shat on.  Not once, but twice.

Then there was the time with my daughter that we spent one of the first nights home after she was born scrubbing poo out of the carpet and walls.  Projectile poop. It’s a thing.

We’ve had times were we debated cutting the onsie off of our children because it was just that bad.  So with all these mini-disaster scenarios, I couldn’t imagine handling a situation where I also had to get the diaper clean as opposed to just bundling up the mess and sticking it in the Diaper Genie.

I had a friend who made the switch.  She told me all about the liners and how cute the diapers were and “but what do you do with the poop?” I asked.  She assured me it wasn’t that bad.  Dump it in the toilet, spray it if you need to, wash the diaper.

I still couldn’t do it.  I felt guilty and started buying the diapers that are free of dyes and other earth-killing materials.  But I still felt guilty.  I read about how each child will be responsible for 8,000-10,000 diapers ending up in a landfill.  I pictured sea turtles dying because of my poo-filled diapers.  Why sea turtles?  When we went to South Padre we visited a sea turtle rescue.  They told us that most of the sea turtles are harmed by people’s trash.  Choking of bits of trash, getting caught in bottles and pieces of plastic.  Therefore, now if I do anything remotely anti-earth friendly I imagine a sea turtle with a single tear crying, “Why are you doing this too me?!”  I know this has nothing to do with diapers and I live in a landlocked state, but I can’t help it.  My mind goes, where my mind goes.

So I finally broke down.  I bought a pack of six cloth diapers from Target.  And you know what?  It really isn’t bad.  I’m loving not having to go to the store all the time. I love the money saved.  And I love that I’m no longer killing imaginary sea turtles with disposable diapers.  Even the dreaded poop situation is not bad.  Like my friend said, flush it, wash it, go on with your life.

And they really are cute…


  1. I could never do it. I remember my mom handing my sister's dirty diapers for me to "flush" and it was just awful (for a four year old). I also decided that my kids' dirty diapers would be used to poison rattle snakes in the landfill. It was the least I could do. :)

  2. Ah, I have encountered this projectile pooping. Terrifying stuff.