As we were packing up our hospital room after my oldest was born, the nurse instructed us to take all of the disposable diapers that were in the room. “You’ll be buying LOTS of them”, she said. I told her we would be using cloth diapers, and that the style that we had bought (GroVia Hybrid) was a one size that could be used for babies 8 -35 lbs, so since Kateri was born at 9 lbs 15 oz, we’d probably start using our cloth soon. She shook her head and disapprovingly said ” we’ll see how long that lasts”.
To say I felt angry and undermined would be an understatement. We began cloth diapering about 2 weeks after we brought Kateri home and never looked back. I’ve never been good at letting go of a grudge, so when we were planning for the birth of our second baby I decided that she would be in cloth from the very beginning. I wrote in our birth plan that our baby girl would ONLY be in cloth diapers, which my husband and I would change and launder. I made our doctor sign it and I was ready to defend our choice to the nurses.
But when Leona came, the pediatric nurse had already read our birth plan. Not only did she not question our choice, she praised it! She told us that when she started working at the hospital decades ago, ALL the babies there were in cloth. They had a service that would pick up and launder all the diapers every week. She told us that it excited her to see cloth becoming more mainstream again.
If you are considering cloth diapering from the get go, here a few things to consider:
The umbilical stump – You will need a diaper that closes below the umbilical stump and does not rub against it. We used an older style of the GroVia Newborn A1o (all in one). They also sell a newer style that is getting rave reviews.
Storage – In addition to those adorable tiny fluffy diapers, you’ll need something to store the dirty ones. We brought two big wet bags with us: one to hold dirty diapers and one for any of my clothing that was dirtied during the birth.
Laundering – You won’t be able to do diaper laundry in the hospital so you’ll either need to bring enough diapers to last your whole hospital stay or have someone to pick up and launder your diapers. Generally, a newborn baby goes through one diaper every two hours.We had a very short hospital stay, so we only used 12 diapers. However, when my parents came by to visit they took our wet bag of dirty diapers back to launder (with very clear instructions on the type of detergent and the cycles) and brought us a new clean wet bag.
Curious about why we chose to do cloth diapering? Check out our post on 5 reasons to try cloth diapering!