When examining the trash you make, it is hard to go far without noticing the large contribution of disposable diapers. My youngest is 2 years old and has been potty trained for about 4 months. However, she still wets at night. So I throw on a pull-up diaper and she is good to go. Our diaper garbage has been reduced, but is still one pull-up per day.
I started calculating how many disposable diapers I am responsible for in the landfill, taking into consideration the ages at which my kids were potty trained. We used on average, about 5 diapers a day:
I always knew it was a lot, but this really makes me sick. 9,300?
I previously thought that it was just the landfill cost of having a baby, and that there is nothing that you could do about it. Somehow I dismissed cloth diapers, because we were all are told that well, by the time you get a diaper service to drive their truck to your house and pick them up, then wash them in hot water and then drive your diapers back to you, you are doing more harm on the environment than just using the plastic ones. I never questioned this line of thought. I just made my mind up that disposable were easier for me, and tossed them and forgot them.
I did not consider that I got in my car to drive to the store and back to pick up my disposable diapers, and so did the store’s delivery truck, and probably the distribution centre’s truck before that. Plus what about the energy and resources used to make them?
I never even considered for a second, the idea of washing them myself.
Then some of the younger girls at work started getting pregnant. They asked me – what diaper service did I use? What? Diaper service? These girls were considering a diaper service? Perhaps all the driving and the washing was not as big a factor after all. Perhaps having nice soft organic cotton next to baby’s skin was better than the stuff diapers are made of. That brings me to another point – what are disposable diapers really made of anyway?
It is so great that the new moms out there are starting to change, and cloth diapering is becoming more and more common. I had no more excuses, and there was no time like the present. I was almost through my diaper journey with my kids, but even if I save another 100 diapers from going into the landfill, it is something right?
So I went out and bought these (shown to the right of the pull-up):
You just insert the padding, and change it out when she wets. The shell can be rinsed and dried out, ready for the next night.
Full investment: $18. This is less than the cost of one pack of disposable diapers!
This is how they look on her:
She calls them her night-time panties and likes them. When I ask her if they are comfy she says yes.
Silly me for not even considering this sooner.