Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My journey to cloth

I am the proud mama of three beautiful babes. I had my first when I was 21 years old. We were newly weds and I was not working. My husband would work double shifts and off days to support his family. We had a rough hard start to our married life.

We had discussed about waiting a few years before we had kids, but faith had something else in store for us. Unknown to us we were already pregnant, conceived on our honeymoon. Talking about making decisions. Anyway, I was ready to try and breastfeed and to combine cloth diapering with disposables. I had to at least try it, mostly to try and save on a tight budget.

So after my baby girl was born I tried to diaper her with cloth. I had the "old" style cloth diapers. The ones you had to learn how to fold and pin together to get a good fit. I was so out of my element with this type of cloth diapering.

I dedicated quit a bit of time to researching the "proper" way to use. I talked to my dad and mom who had used cloth diapers with me. But that was no help to me, I just couldn't get it correct. I mean I would fold them very good and to the proper size but when it came to put it on my daughter something would always go wrong. I mean it would pin but when I lifted her up it would slowly slide down her legs! I knew I was doing something different or wrong than what I had learned.

After a few more try's I gave up on this method. We transitioned into full time disposables, not what I had wanted from the beginning but it would have to do.

So after our second child was born I didn't think about revisiting the cloth idea at all! I was not going down that road again. Too much trial and error for me to feel at ease to try again. So we used only disposables with our new little boy. Thankfully he potty trained easily and fast at just over a year old. So the days of diapers came fast to an end with my two babies all grown up and potty trained both during day time and night time.
I was free of diapers forever!!! ............ Or so I thought!

We became pregnant, again, unplanned, for the third time when my son was 3.5 years old and our little girl was just 5.5 years old. We didn't expect it and wasn't looking for it, but it happened; we were pregnant.

I knew from the get go that breastfeeding was *the* only option for us. We did it with the first two, full term breast feeding, and we were going to offer the same for out new little surprise.

After some difficulties I was out of a job, so to try and save again I revisited the idea of cloth diapers. This time it was different. I had already seen adds for cloth diapers when I was pregnant and knew that times and styles had changed. I was lazily thinking how will I handle all that extra laundry but knew I had to do something to save us money. So I got hubby on board and convinced him it was the only way.

Now I was going in, ready to invest into cloth diapers. But I had very little cash on hand to get them, but knew that disposables would become unaffordable very fast. There are a lot of brands out there. And the prices range from just a few bucks to into the twenties and thirties of dollars! Most of the "brands" I fell in love with I so could not afford. With the help of my cousin I found one I could, but it is not the most popular or best known brand. I didn't care, they were cloth and would do the same function as the others. I made the move and got them!

They arrived at my door a few short weeks after. I was the proud owner and soon to be user of cloth diapers: BabyLand AIO (all in one) pocket Diapers. I got 4 each of 5 different colors, so I totaled 20 for all time use. We have red, orange, yellow, green and blue monkey prints. Below is a picture I took after we opened the delivery box. We received an extra insert with our order.

I pre-washed that afternoon all the diapers before use.

I must say that they are easy to use and in my opinion quite absorbent. He can stay sometimes up to 5 hours with one on before it becomes too full to absorb  any more fluid. Not that we usually stay this long before changing him :-). They are easy to clean and don't take that much effort to wash. I wash them all together in one load once a week, see easy. The poopies get washed by hand right away. Here below I have pictures of my surprise modeling his diapers and saving mommy and daddy a lot of $.

These diapers have been in constant use since the day of their arrival to our home. It will be 4 straight months of tough use so far. He crawls all over the yard with these on and they don't stay stained or get scuffed, ripped or teared. They look just as new as the day they arrived. I still inspect them monthly for any signs of wear and tear but am always glad not to find any. We use 1 disposable diaper per night as I am too lazy to wake up in the middle of the night to change a diaper to prevent leeks on our bed. He has started to sleep from 8:30 until 6, waking maybe 3-4 times a night to feed. Well maybe not waking more like blind sleep induced looking, latching and drinking. I pre assemble my diaper stash and fold them neatly. Hoping that someday soon hubby will feel confident enough to give diapering with cloth diapers a try! He is fabulous and fast with disposables, I have to say. But has not yet felt comfortable with the snaps and choices of size that the cloth diapers have to offer.

I am an attachment parent by nature. And now I have joined the cloth diapering world and am loving every moment of it! I say YAY for cloth and saving $ and the environment all in one neat and easy diaper.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Women are like cars .....

A guy daydreams about the car he will someday have. It will be fully equipped and make all his friends jealous.
It will have of course seat belts, CD player and airco.

So one day he finds the car of his dreams! He falls in love and makes a life long commitment to it. And together with this fabulous car he builds his life. But he neglects to encourage the use of the seat belt. And we all know that wearing your seat belt can save your live if you are in a car accident, right? Well why then do we not use our seat belts more frequently? Why do we choose to give it all up to chance? And if something does happen we shrug it off as fate or part of life.

Okay, I'm going to be honest, I'm not really talking about some guy and a car. I'm talking about men and women. And the saying: "I was fed formula and I'm fine ....". Is fine good enough?

Just like when driving we should all wear our seat belts (they are there already, no installation needed, no extra expense) and if we choose not to we should be encouraged on it's life saving use. When we educate and encourage the use of seat belts increase. If you are caught driving without a seat belt do you not get pulled over and ticketed? So why should breastfeeding be any different? Shouldn't we encourage each other to use the standard equipment we come with? And we all know the cost of the "ticket" when we choose not to. It not only costs lost of money to buy but can cause life long illnesses. Again, why take the chance?

Why not use something that is there available and ready to use? And it's user friendly! No installations or minimal instructions needed! Seat belts are easy to use. With a little demonstration a child can strap themselves in. And it never fails you if you use it correctly. All you have to do is encourage it's use.

Again, so why are breast any different? They are there producing milk ready to use. No installation and minimum instructions are needed. A child/infant learns easily how to "use" them. And when their use is encouraged it saves lives.

So girlz lets all use our seat belts and make sure to save the lives of the next generation. Be safe and wear your seat belts proudly!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Beat your kid; seriously!?

How awful!

I was searching for funny pictures of kids crying for an article I was planning to write. But when I put the search words "kid crying" into the Google search engine the first title that came up caught my attention. And I immediately felt sick to my stomach! The title said: Love your kids? Prove it by beating them. Under the title is written: First smack your kid (the 5 across the eyes technique works). Wait a few seconds for your kid to start crying, then smack your kid again to let him know ...... I assume that "5 across the eyes" means that with my palm I hit him across his face, how demeaning! Now I honestly didn't want to find out what it is I must let my kid know by doing such a thing to him but I could not stop myself. I clicked on the website link.

This is the most horrific thing I have ever encountered! Upon opening the website on the top is a picture of a man with a kid raised over his head with the words: Stop being a pussy, beat your kid! I wanted to scream back: Stop being a bully and hug your kid! But then I realized the website can't hear me.

The article starts about how it is "good" to beat your kid. That kids today need a good smack once in awhile. And also that we should send our kids to a psychiatrist for them to pull some bulls*** disorder out of their a** to cover up what bad parents we are ..... Seriously? SERIOUSLY? SERIOUSLY!?!?!?

I could barely read any more, but don't worry their is a lot of crap in this article.

Here is the link to the article. I really could not take anymore. I kind of scanned through the lines and decided I am not going to read crap like this. If you would like to explore the narrow mindedness of the lesser brain of our species, please by all means click on the link I have provided and read with caution.

Not beating my kids is not making them into criminals. It is you who beat that encourages them to feel abused and neglected. I was beaten, whipped, slapped, smacked and abused. I know how belittling and enraging it makes you feel. As a kid you don't "gain" respect for your parents. You learn to secretly despise them. And that kind of rage stays with a child into adulthood. It damages the parent/child relationship. A child learns nothing from this type of treatment only not to trust his parents.

Ancient healing?

I am a nut for National Geographic and any kind of documentary about other cultures or past civilizations. Don't get me wrong I hated history in school but love to see and learn about it from the TV. I guess it's just the way I learn.

One night I forbid my husband to change the channel. I was so into a documentary about Egypt and the medicine that was practiced in those times. I found this so interesting. I was a nurse and I'm a lactation nut. So when these two aspects collided I was fascinated!

The extent of knowledge the Egyptians had about the human anatomy is to be respected. They obviously knew more than we ever can claim we do. With no "pills" and "syrups" to fix illnesses they had medicine.

One of the reasons was because they valued the milk from a lactating mother. They understood it's healing abilities. They knew it was more than just milk.
We still need science to prove to us that the best option is human milk, and all the benefits that come from it. But the Egyptians were much smarter and saw the benefits that it was created for.

When your child has a sore throat what do you give her? I usually reach straight for honey. This has antibacterial properties and the Egyptians knew this too. 

So can you guess what they did? They understood the benefits and healing properties of human milk and knew that honey also had healing benefits, so they mixed them together and made a cream this way! That could be applied to cuts, sores, scraps, and burns. This is not excluding all the injuries that were received on the battle field!

It is recently a study clarified why human milk is so beneficial for our babies. The study found that there are stem cells in human milk. This means that the development and growth of your child doesn't stop at birth (which you already know, because we are not born to fend for our selves at that exact moment, we are not born already as adults). We still need help for our body to "finish" the job where the placenta could not. This is why human milk is so beneficial and this is the same reason why it is such a great cure.

Pink eye? Human milk. Ear ache? Human milk. Cuts and scrapes? Human milk. Even sore throat can benefit from a little human milk.

I do not discriminate in my house. If it's so great for the kids, it is great for hubby too! Now I know that you are shocked and maybe feeling a bit wheezy. You are thinking that you would never go to that extreme. But think about it. He has ear ache, you have human milk. It costs nothing to express a few drops into a shot glass and use a medicine dropper and "drop" it into the ear canal. He will have relief within moments. And if there is an infection, like was the case with my husband the last time around, it will help fight it; naturally.

All my years as a parent and lactation nut I have met only one doctor that didn't believe (or rather just didn't want to promote) in the benefits of human milk. Every doctor, nurse, midwife and pediatrician I have had the pleasure of interacting with have all know and promoted the healing benefits of human milk.

I think this brings new meaning to the words "breastfeeding saves lives". This too was stated in a recent article. It said that if only 90% of women in the U.S. would breastfeed their babies for 6 months a total of 900 babies would be saved and more than $13 billion would be saved in health costs.
We need to find the respect and value that the Egyptians had for the lactating mother. This alone will save our species.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Breast or udder? Which is your pick?

Okay, just a thought. Let's see if your able to catch up.

A calf drinks "cows" milk. A kitten drinks "cats" milk. A puppy drinks "dogs" milk. A lamb drinks "goats" milk.
Seeing a pattern here??

We would never say that the calf drinks udder milk, right? It would make no sense. Try and say it aloud: a calf drinks udder milk. Sounds "udderly" silly, right?

Well why then do we say that a baby drinks "breast" milk?? Yes it is produced by the breast but remember that udders also produce milk, yet it's not called utter milk (as we found out above).

Could this be the connection that makes so much people squirm around "breast" feeding moms and babies? I now believe this is the link.

We associate the breast as a sexual organ (it is not, but society believes it is). We think that it is improper to expose fully or even partially a breast to feed our baby. Because it's a sexual thing, right? RIGHT?!

Well if we substitute that specific word that makes it seem sexual to you dirty and single minded people, we are left with something else (and if this offends you then I strongly advice you to see a psychiatrist and work out your issues). We then can say that a baby drinks *human* milk. Yes, yes human.

Humans produce milk just like cows, cats, dogs and goats. Each produce their own milk for their own young. Each young having different "needs" from their milk. This is why you would never see a goat "buying" a milk substitute made from cats milk. The thought is absurd, right? Made you feel silly? Good, now you start to see where I'm going with this.

Each mammal on this earth was blessed to be able feed their young from their breast. Yet we "choose" not to.
We choose to give our babies human milk substitutes made from cow's milk. Milk that was produced for a calf that needs to grow rapidly and gain lots of weight fast. If you want for your baby to drink cows milk, I would advice to buy a cow and strap that baby fast to a teat on that udder! (imagine a cow "baby wearing", lol)

Cows milk is for calves, breast or better human milk is for human babies. More you, less Moo!