Conversations with Will: So, my husband has decided to take on a new business venture, a life long dream of his if you will. He is now fabricating ceramic pods for babies to sleep in. These pods will not only be custom formed to your baby’s unique size and shape, but they will offer protection for baby from being smashed by their dads at night, dropped on their heads, trampled by disobedient dogs or even being swooped down upon and carried away by a hawk or other predatory bird… the possibilities are really endless. These pods will also float, so you can then hook your baby pod to say, a tube or even a surfboard, and take your baby in the water with you with no fear of it drowning (emotional trauma is guaranteed and comes free with purchase). Folks, these custom life saving devices won’t last long, please contact me (do NOT contact me) to place a pre-order while they’re still available.
I feel like for those that may not really know me, I should say “just kidding”. Then I feel like I should say that if you couldn’t tell I was just kidding, I probably don’t want to know you anyway.
Last week I went for my 16/17 week check up. All is well and we were able to hear the baby’s little heart beating away. 144 bpm which according to one of those silly wives tales means baby is a boy. Not that I follow these wives tales or anything… but I also happen to know (just by chance) that the Chinese Gender Prediction Chart, the ring-on-the-necklace test, the Ramzi Method, the nub theory and the position of my bump all point to boy also. Which means there’s a 99% chance it’s a girl.
As I prepare for baby, I’m currently focusing on building my cloth diaper and baby carrier stash.
There’s many reasons we’ve decided to cloth diaper:
- Status: First and definitely most important is strictly for appearance and status. We want everyone who looks at our baby to know that we are crunchy hippies who spare no expense at making sure we save the planet one poopy diaper at a time… or at least look pretentious enough to care about the environment at all. And if they can’t tell by the fluffy butt diaper, the smell of patchouli and body odor that precedes us should get the message across. Seriously, cloth diapers are really cute. But that’s not at all why we’re doing it, though it is a fun added bonus.
- Health: After researching standard disposable diapers it’s my opinion that the ingredients used in making them so super absorbent is not something I choose to put on my baby. Yes, people do it everyday, and that’s fine! But I’m choosing not to. Cloth diapering also allows much more air to reach baby’s skin which helps in preventing diaper rash. In all reality I’m sure there will be times that we do need to use disposables (ie: traveling, camping, needing things to light on fire to throw at people we don’t like), but in these cases we plan to use the most natural disposable we can.
- Cost: While the initial upfront cost of CDing can provide some sticker shock ($300-$500), the long term savings is very substantial. On average, disposable diapers for one baby from birth-2.5 years runs around $2,800-$4,000. Of course the cost of washing and drying cloth diapers will absorb some of the savings, it is still not enough to offset the benefit which typically ends up being anywhere between $1,500-$2,000 of savings over the course of baby’s diapering years. Especially if you’re using cloth wipes (which you can make out of old flannel shirts, t-shirts or receiving blankets), an energy saving washer and line drying outside as much as possible. Add to this the fact that you can even resell your gently used diapers for 50-60% of the original cost and you’re looking at even more savings. Yes, I know what you’re thinking, “… how can a sack full of poop ever be considered ‘gently used’?”. Well, that my friends, is one of the mysteries. You see, when you’re devoted to eating granola, drinking Kombucha and singing Kumbaya to woodland creatures while meditating, you are not above buying pre-pooped diapers.
- Environment: This is the most debatable of all the benefits as some claim the water and electricity you use is far more harmful to the earth than all the disposables going to the landfill. I can see both sides of this argument. However, I do feel that washing properly, line drying and being conservative with resources in general can help balance this. And at the end of the day, I feel like CDing is more environmentally friendly and there’s a lot to be said for peace of mind. Leave me alone in my little tree-hugging world, okay?
When you get down to it, a diaper is ultimately just a device to catch poop, so if it’s get the job done and makes your life a little easier, that’s what it’s all about.
When I had Jordan I was gifted a Baby Bjorn carrier (gasp!). At the time, I thought it was legit and would put him in it (forward facing, crotch dangling and all) and wear him around the house. He was not much for this and lasted for 10-20 minutes a handful of times and that was the extent of our baby wearing experience. I’m sure the reason he didn’t like it was because of how horribly uncomfortable it was, and unfortunately I didn’t know any different. But either way, I had no idea why baby wearing can be so beneficial or how to do it properly.
Fast forward to now and not only has wearing become much more widely practiced, but information on how to do it, and options for ergonomically correct carriers and styles of wearing are plentiful. I’ve researched baby wearing a lot. And I intend to wear our new baby as much as is comfortable, beneficial and enjoyable for us both. Many cultures all over the world use baby wearing in their daily lives as both a way to be productive but also, and most importantly, as a way to keep their baby closely connected and bonded with them – as they should be! Some benefits of baby wearing include:
- Kangaroo Care or Skin-to-Skin Contact: proven especially miraculous in the recovery and growth of premature babies in the NICU, but also highly beneficial in the bonding and sleep patterns of all babies. Babies spend 9 months living inside your body at which time they’re abruptly introduced to this big, overwhelming world. It’s only natural then that babies want to be as close to you as possible while they acclimate to their new environment, which is where wearing can provide the same closeness, warmth, rhythm of breathing and heart beats, and swaddled (read: cramped as hell) effect that they had in the womb.
- Productivity: wearing your baby can enable you to keep them close and comforted while your hands are free to do what you need to do. This might include but is not limited to: house chores, exercising, cooking, hunting, underwater basket weaving or even fighting fires. Wearing is also known to have “sleepy dust” because of how easily babies will drift off to sleep once they’re wrapped up close to you and lulled by your movement; so this can be a good way to soothe a tired baby as well.
- Core Strength: There’s a crazy notion that wearing a baby will create developmental delays… that baby won’t sit up, walk or crawl “on time” because they’re always being held. But on the contrary, holding or wearing a baby in an upright position actually does quite the opposite as it causes baby to engage their core and strengthens their neck muscles. There are no valid statistics that point to any delay in development. Not to mention that no two babies are alike and all will progress at their own rate.
- Independence & Security: In the same vein as mentioned above, some argue that holding or wearing a baby all the time will create a “spoiled” or “needy” baby who will always want to be held. Again, this turns out to be quite the opposite in most cases. Wearing your baby establishes trust in them – trust that you’re there to nurture, comfort and provide for them. When babies have this trust, they are much more confident which in turn makes them independent as they feel secure in knowing you’ll always be there. There are going to be needy or independent babies regardless, it’s just the way it is, but close parenting and nurturing can definitely do no harm.
So that’s what I’ve been doing as of late. Tomorrow I’ll be making a trip to Raleigh to a cloth diaper store to take a look at some different options. There’s a plethora of diapers online, but I’m a very tactile person and I need to touch them, play with the snaps, smell them (yes, I will actually smell them), become one with the diaper so that I can see what they’re all about. Then I can make a better decision when purchasing and/or registering for diapers online.
18 Weeks Questionnaire
Size of Baby: Baby is the size of a Sweet Potato – weighs about 7 oz and is 5.6″ long
Total Weight Gain: 5 lbs
Sleep: What is that?
Food Cravings: Mango. I’m obsessed with fresh mangoes. I’m also loving my green juice. And cereal.
Best Moment So Far: Hearing baby’s heart beat and feeling the hiccups in my stomach.
Movement: Baby is either going 100 mph or not going at all. I think it wears itself out. It will move nonstop for two days and then take a whole day off. At this stage in pregnancy feeling movement is inconsistent as baby is still small enough to get into a position that you may not feel.
Labor Signs: N/A
Gender: T-minus two weeks until we find out if our baby will name its first goat Cinderella or Spiderman.
Belly Button In Or Out? Still in.
What I Miss: My husband, sunny summery days, fitting into my favorite jeans – I finally had to retire them temporarily.
What I Am Looking Forward To: Meeting my doula in person next week, finding out baby’s gender, my life… I am so happy and excited about my life.
I hope you’ve enjoyed (or at least endured) my blabbering on and on. Thanks for reading! Until next time, I’m going to go listen to some Cake.