Sometimes you just have to let something go. That's what I decided as I sprayed the poop off a cloth diaper while Issie screamed from his crib.
You see we started cloth diapering our oldest son to combat horrible diaper rash. (He is pictured above in his adorable cloth diaper.) When our second son was born I assumed I would just continue cloth diapering him as well. Afterall, it had been a wonderful experience for our family.
But then I got to know Issie. Sweet, precious, loud, opinionated Issie. Issie who doesn't sleep through the night. Issie who, at 10 months, still nurses round the clock. Issie who has given me a run for my money. He didn't like to be put down. He refuses a bottle and it took months before I could get through an entire church service without the sweet ladies in the nursery coming to get me to calm down a hysterical baby.
Since Issie was born I have questioned every aspect of myself as a mother in a way I didn't with Ry. Issie is the beat of my heart, but he is not always an easy baby. I was tired and the laundry was piling up and I was nursing every two hours and Ry was hitting two and I was running a business and cooking meals for my family from scratch and trying to keep breathing.
There are women who do all of the above and keep up their cloth diapering regimen. And that's great. I would NEVER discourage anyone from cloth diapering or breastfeeding or cooking from scratch or doing anything they feel is good for their family.
But I had to let something go.
And I don't feel like I have to justify myself, because I don't feel guilty about it. But I wanted to share this to say... it's okay to let something go.
It might mean taking a break from cloth and putting my baby in pampers til I get I get my toddler potty trained.
It might, for some, mean hitting up the Pizza Hut every once in a while for a break.
A friend and I were recently talking about breastfeeding. I nursed Ry to a year and Issie is 10 months old and still nursing like a champ. She only nursed her oldest child for a short time and still had some guilt. I told her what I tell every mother who mentions this to me:
If there is something in a mother's life that is a source of stress, pain and anxiety, then it is no longer a healthy behavior and should be reevaluated.
Whether it's cloth diapers, formula, going back to work, staying home full time, eating the occasional processed foods, letting your kid play with the iPad so you can shower... whatever it is... don't feel guilty. Let it go. Move on and live to mother another day.
What is something you have given up in the name of sanity?