Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Hippie Ambassador

For some reason whenever we're around people who are expecting a baby or who have a tiny one, we always end up talking about the way that we've been doing things around here, specifically with regards to cloth diapering and baby-led weaning (read my first post if you haven't and catch up with what all that is about for us).

Today was no different. We went on a visit; those in attendance were the host and hostess (Uncle B and Aunt L; our very good buddies), Aunt L's dad (his house, the 3 of them live there; the couple owns their place and want to move but YOU try selling something now), and Aunt L's sister and sister's boyfriend. Aunt L's sister is pregnant and due in October, but she needed to get a cerclage due to complications and since the cerclage comes out at about 36 weeks gestation, the baby might be born before the due date. She was on bedrest and is now on "take it easy" for the remainder of her pregnancy.

Being new parents, Musical Daddy and I do our best to talk up the positive aspects of being parents. As he has mentioned numerous times, he detests when people say "just wait until The Boy learns to crawl/stand/walk/talk...then your life is OVER." Or when they used to say "once the baby arrives, you'll be getting no sleep." We commiserated over that whole load of nonsense for awhile. We emphasized that we've loved every stage of The Boy's development so far.

We discussed The Boy's eating habits during dinner. It's a conversation topic anyway, because for him to eat food means that he's probably feeling pretty well, and for him not to eat means that he's probably not feeling so super. He LOVED Aunt L's macaroni salad but found that hamburgers are a bit hard to chew. The Boy was sitting in his chair just eating his dinner and being a gentleman at the table, as he always does, and we started talking about it. Aunt L remembered a trip to Charlie Brown's steakhouse in which The Boy was eating pieces of chicken, broccoli, green beans, and lettuce at 7 months old with barely 3 teeth and was telling her sister how awesome it was...and she realized after we mentioned it that The Boy never ate baby food. We do spoon-feed him his applesauce for his blood pressure medication, and we also will share soy yogurt as a treat and that he doesn't feed himself. Everything else, though, it's on him to conquer and that he does. I said that it's great for us because we just let him do his eating and we do ours and (to appeal to the fact that Aunt L's sister is a teacher) that it is developmentally appropriate--when they start putting things in their mouths they can try food too.

Then, after dinner, I went in to change The Boy and came back out with him wearing his baseball diaper (by the way this diaper is on sale right now and I want another one for The Boy but I just bought 2 of these to try). Aunt L's sister asked if that was something to put over the diaper, to which I responded that it was the diaper, that it's cloth, and washable, and very easy to deal with. We qualified the discussion with an explanation that Musical Daddy has very sensitive skin and that The Boy has clearly inherited that trait; disposables were not an option for us anymore once the rashes just kept on going and didn't get better. Now I knew that the subject would come up about his diaper which was why I was sure to bring nice ones (a few get stains from time to time but a combination of the sun and the next wash cycle get rid of the stains...but when going out, I choose nice looking dipes).

So...will they consider baby-led weaning or cloth diapers? I'm speculating that the idea of baby-led weaning is instantly much more appealing, but cloth diapers are a healthy option and you just can't help but go to bits about the way that a baby looks in cloth. Sorry--I don't think that disposable diapers are cute. Maybe that's my bias from having successfully cloth-diapered my little man for about 9 months, starting from when he was 2.5 months. Or maybe it's just that the diapers really are adorable. As for baby-led weaning, I wouldn't be surprised at all to find that she has read up on the topic when it comes time for her little one to try some food. Oh, the book is coming out soon!

I know that I've helped convince several moms to use cloth diapers on the WebMD forums. It's pretty easy for us and we save money. And we don't generate so much garbage! I try not to preach or act uppity about this stuff (although when the discussion turns to breastfeeding I'm finding it increasingly hard not to preach) but instead "lead by example" with these choices that we've made. They worked so well for us and so many people will say "I wish I had heard about this earlier" with regards to pocket diapers or AIOs as well as baby-led weaning. Perhaps if I provide the service of talking about it and sharing the information, more families will consider it.


Anna said...

I am a webmd mama. I must say that I have definitely appreciated your advice about cloth. I admit the idea scared me at first...I think I have even preached AGAINST it at a point. But your advice and honest opinions have been so helpful and now I am addicted! I find them to be more absorbent than disposables and much cuter. :)

Thanks, hippie ambassador! Keep spreading that pachoulie, crunchy love!

Musical Daddy said...

Just like a Mom, to remind you to wear clean underwear when you leave the house. Granted, as an older person, you're probably not showing your underwear off as an example to others, but still.