Unfortunately, I was not in a position where laundry would be convenient the way it is now. I had a coin-op laundry at my apartment complex, and they didn’t always work that great. I also had absolutely no space where I could dry my diapers outdoors, especially if I didn’t want to risk them being stolen (sketchy neighborhood). My other option was to go to my mom’s for laundry. This was usually what I did because I taught piano at her house once a week at the time, so I would simply bring my laundry with me and do it while I taught. Cloth diapering usually requires washing 2-3 times a week though, and I was driving an SUV at the time and going to my mom’s to do laundry required a few hours out of my day where I couldn’t get anything else at home done. The idea was also still a little intimidating to me and I hadn’t learned a whole lot about it. In the end, I decided not to try to do it.
I don’t regret that decision. I don’t feel some crazy guilt that my son has spent two years in disposables, and it is only as he’s approaching potty training age that I’ll be trying out cloth on him. If I didn’t have number two coming before my son was potty trained, he probably never would be in anything but disposables.
However, as the arrival of my newest little boy approaches (just entered third trimester!), I find that my circumstances — and with them, my values and decisions — have changed.
Last time I didn’t even have space for a changing table. Diapers, wipes, and bag balm got put in a basket on top of our dresser in the living room. Yes, our dresser was in the living room. It was a really small apartment. We changed our son on the floor. Now I have a house. I have room to store cloth diapers. There’s a changing table in the baby’s bedroom. I have a covered back porch to hang a line under, and space in the laundry room for a small line.
Most importantly, we have our own washer and drying. Adding a couple of loads a week isn’t going to up our water or electric bill a whole lot, especially since baby/toddler clothes and other small clothing items can be run through the second cycle with the diapers so I can kill two birds with one stone. All I have to do is carry the wet bag full of diapers downstairs, along with any other laundry, and wash, and then go about my day with my sons. No paying quarters for machines shared with other families and hating it when I have to run the cloth diapers twice because it costs more. No having to leave my house for hours to drive a gas guzzling vehicle half and hour away to use a free washer and dryer.
So yes, my values have changed in the last two years. And you know what? That’s totally, completely okay. The information we have changes. The values we have change. The effort we’re willing to put into something changes. How much we actually care about something changes, especially in relation to our ability to actually do something about it. All of that is okay.
I just hope this one is built long and skinny like my older son. The fluffy diaper can hold his little jeans up!