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By James Wesley, Rawles on May 26, 2010 8:13 PM
You’ve seen it in the movies: the very pregnant woman gets stuck in traffic, or an elevator, or wherever on the way to the delivery room. (Although, a very pregnant woman was recently rescued by Sheriff’s helicopter on I-40 during the recent floods here in Middle Tennessee!) On the screen she usually makes it to the hospital with some stunt driving from a frantic father or some Samaritan will deliver the baby in the back seat. The whole affair ends with smiling patients and doctors happily mewling over a freshly swaddled newborn. Then everyone heads home in their nice family car and new baby in a properly approved, rear-facing car seat. But what would scene look like after TEOTWAWKI? "And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days!" - Matthew 24:19 (ESV) This article is not about child birthing, though finding a local midwife or doula isn’t a bad idea. Instead I’m writing about some important aspects about taking care of infants and toddlers post SHTF that new or hopeful parents may not have considered. Know that child rearing advice is always a delicate matter, both in the giving and the taking. Also know that I accept that each family has its own best way and if what I say offends, please forgive and extend the benefit of the doubt. Regardless of what I have to say, I humbly mean offense to none. Experienced parents know how little they actually know! The main points of this article will be to discuss, literally, the ins and outs of babies after TEOTWAWKI. By that I mean nursing and diapers, with a bit of talk about carrying your little bundle of post-apocalyptic joy. Breastfeeding Obviously feeding your baby is of utmost importance, balloon up or down. Aside from being God’s best plan, nursing offers very common sense prepper advantages over bottle feeding. For full disclosure, my wife is a member of La Leche League and became so after our own frustrating experiences. Now she helps frustrated mothers (and fathers!). This isn’t a plug for LLL, but they do have wonderful book, on-line, and human resources and many places have local meetings to help mothers. Health- This article is not about offering medical advice. It is enough to state that breast milk has known anti-bacterial properties suited perfectly for the baby. Staving off illness and hunger after the loss of services we have all taken for granted will be very important. Following is a very short list of benefits: -Water used to mix formula might not be trustworthy after the collapse. -Breastfeeding reduces risk of future weight problems. (1) -It can also decrease heart troubles later in life by controlling cholesterol and blood pressure. (2) -Breast fed babies are far more resilient to infections, allergies, diarrhea, and dental problems. (3) -Babies who are breast fed have more advanced neurological development. (4) -Mother’s are shown to have reduced risks of heart attack, stroke, and breast cancer. (5) These are some of the few reasons the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends breastfeeding for child and mother. You wouldn’t know it considering that America has the
From personal experience in the circle of friends we adopted as new parents (you know. For what ever reason we. the ones you hang out with when all of your childless friends stop returning calls. T. though she was quite thin) who just flat-out ignored our directions not to give our baby a bottle.nih. As my mother-in-law said. especially my wife. They know only the “ba-ba. had less stinky diapers.ncbi.aappublications. Despite the fact that the majority of the world feeds their babies from the breast. worried. rest. and water for mommy. Duration of Breastfeeding and Risk of Overweight: A Meta-Analysis.org/cgi/content/full/115/2/496 (1) 1. Lactation can be greatly reduced however without sufficient food. I think in part as it is no longer—at least generally speaking—a skill that is passed down and certainly not seen in the corporate media. health care—actual caring for one’s health— saves a family on stress and money.gov/pubmed/7968027?dopt=Abstract (5) Obstetrics and Gynaecology . The immune system of human milk: antimicrobial. please make the effort.97-103. (4) http://www. A nursing woman’s supply of milk will increase with the demand for milk.O. We couldn’t do it. May issue 2009. et al. Pediatr Infect Dis J 1993 Aug. You can see it here… http://pediatrics. read the ingredients on a can of formula! Supply. but I digress. We had to hire a lactation consultant and every penny was worth it. and supporting data. J. American Journal of Epidemiology 2005 162:397-403. (2) Current Paediatrics 04.nlm. and what about stopping to mix it up? Talk about expensive powdered food.” Our first nursing experience was a complete nightmare with many sleepless. both of which are hard to maintain in the face of the grocery store convenience of “better” living through chemistry. Still not convinced. It takes effort and commitment. But wait! With those two enormous tactical advantages. research studies. Lancet 1977. Petrakis. It is hard for working mothers and recent generations have not been brought up with nursing as the norm. antiinflammatory and immunomodulating properties.) our children seemed to spit up less. . Ho.lowest percentage of breast fed babies of all the industrialized nations. formula is it! On the other hand a nursing mother is a self-mobile. We had one nurse (“Big Red” as I dubbed her. Even nursing for a short time is better than nothing. 2: 124. Unilateral breastfeeding and breast cancer. Take care of your troops and they’ll take care of your baby. nursing doesn’t always come natural or easy.B. K. Harder. there was little to no support from the medical staff. Before any collapse.” Possibly more important are the social aspects of nursing. tear filled nights. in her day nursing was for “poor.12(8):664-71. why doesn’t everyone nurse? From my own conversations with mothers around places (I like to brag on the missus you know) it basically seems to boil down to convenience and lack of support. heavily armed food factory for your baby— a real mobile canteen. For the sake of you and baby TEOTWAWKI. were fully committed to nursing our babies. We would also find that what little advice we got on breast feeding was outdated and / or incorrect.. 109 (10):1259-66 (3) Goldman AS. Ing. When we decided to try to nurse our first baby. The official policy statement is chock full of benefits.Will you drive down to Wal-Mart or the local FEMA camp for baby formula after the mobs start torching things? How much can you fit in your B.14. and far fewer illnesses on average than those we knew who used formula. N. Circulation 04. white-trash mothers. It was an uphill slog all the way.
we have used them and on occasion and still do. and water a lactating woman can produce a good bit of milk. rest. two of our three babies have had reactions to disposable diapers when we’ve used certain brands (yes. Check your local area.One of the most compelling reasons to switch to cloth diapers even before the zombie hordes attack is their chemical makeup. Disposable diapers are expensive and from our own budget analysis (YMMV) we saved about . You might want to ask beloved Granny too—she may have just the answer you need. will be a marketable skill. supplying milk for babies could be useful for charity or barter. If expressed by hand or pump. mother’s milk is a good source of protein and other nutrients along with the aforementioned health benefits. She often does. less prepared families go through their typically small supply of food reserves.cnn And let’s not forget one last thing about survival nursing—mother’s milk is good for the whole family.) None have had reactions to any cloth diaper liners but one does seem to break out when we put a wool cover on her.200. even some who try very diligently and do “all the right things.Help is out there if you need it. Aside from professional lactation consultants there are volunteer groups (such as the La Leche League) and the American Association of Pediatrics with resources for helping nursing mothers. Like the unnatural foods offered us and the plastics we use.” My only goal is to point out the tactical advantages thereof.breastfeed. here’s one real world example concerning the Chinese earthquake in 2008… http://www.223 for a box of Pampers the next time the local brigands ride by? Health and Wealth. As to wealth. wet nurses might find themselves in high demand. or formula costs $4. Do a web-search on the health risks of Sodium Polyacrylate. where does it go? It will eventually come out (though some nursing babies poop far less and that poop is less stinky.com/video/#/video/world/2008/05/22/riminton. condone. Obviously. With decent food. two more tactical points!) and you’ve got to decide what to do with it. disposable diapers are filled with dangerous and unhealthy chemicals that you may not even realize. and believe breastfeeding is far superior to baby formula.china. Did you pick up diapers when you ran to the Wal-Mart or the FEMA camp? Drat.cnn. Maybe you can trade some . you know? Final Tactical Breastfeeding BreakdownAfter TEOTWAWKI. These are just some of the chemicals that have been found in disposable diapers. Also remember where those chemicals are in contact with your baby and perhaps those studies linking disposable diapers with male infertility and increased urinary tract infections in baby girls will make sense. Think that’s gross? Have you ever taken a close look at the non-human beasts whose milk you don’t think twice about drinking? Gross? You be the judge. Remember the pictures of mothers screaming out for formula and diapers in the wake of Katrina? There are real world examples of just such nursing aid. When other. These same chemicals go into the land fills and trash burners. I do also know that nursing will not work for everyone. Cloth Diapers Well now that you’ve got all that good mama’s milk in baby TEOTWAWKI. Teaching young mothers to nurse themselves when all the Wal-Mart’s are burned-out. Tribulytin. and Dioxin. From personal experience. we don’t use those on her any more. cloth diapers represent a larger initial investment (way less than that third Armalite you just bought!) versus more money spent on disposable diapers over the long run. Again. the caveat: I DO fully support.hero.
‘Tis yucky.$1. situations disposables might well be the only reasonable answer. Larger cloth diapers can also be used for “night-time undies” for the older kids who may still wet the bed. We also used our cloth diapers on subsequent children which increases savings greatly. In certain G. (Secret husband note: rinsing out poopie diapers is great marriage capital! Women will want you. If you are traveling. Many folk are also put off by the idea of dunking poo-poo diapers. or composting chicken dung? You be the judge. but there is definitely more laundry to do. just drop it in the diaper pail / wet bag. Yikes! Anyway these are the three basic styles of cloth diapers we are familiar with. It will take a tactical judgment call to be sure.) But really. Not as much as you might think. maybe that’s stretching it a bit. the added work mostly consists of an extra load of laundry. but I highly recommend making cloth diapers your main stay with disposables as backup. These have the advantages of being the cheapest with the fewest moving parts. Clothes lines are also very useful in general for other no power situations. just think how easy it would be to strap on a diaper wet bag on that tacticool MOLLE assault vest! I would also suggest getting a clothes line—nothing takes out stains like good ol’ Sol. You think gun-talk forums can get nasty? Go follow some diaper swapping threads. skinning game. They are also fairly easy to make for someone with a bit of sewing savvy.O. When you finish rinsing out a stinky. one-piece diaper closed with a diaper pin or snappy (snappies work sort of like shirt-stays) known far and wide.D. But it is definitely appreciated. men will want to be you… OK. There are a couple of other types that have attributes of each of these. There are times when using disposable diapers will be more convenient in the short run. pre-folded) than flats so they are absorbent without any fancy origami. But is it yuckier than gutting livestock.These are your familiar. For long road trips we have been known to occasionally get some ‘sposie’s (diaper jargon) as there is obviously not going to be any laundry stops along the way.O. ‘tis true. The only trouble is that it can take some practice folding these correctly and learning to pin them in a way that will keep them secure. Types of Clothe DiapersEvery prepper’s favorite part. . Cloth diapers are inflation proof! But wait! With those two enormous tactical advantages. the gear! Trust me when I say that the AK versus AR or 9mm versus . Flats are just that—flat pieces of cloth that need to be folded up properly to be absorbent and stay properly. they are just thicker (i. Snappies are very easy to use but not terribly durable. cloth diapers do require more work than their modern convenient counterpart. why doesn’t everyone use cloth diapers? Like nursing. I got used to dunking diapers pretty quick.e. Prefolds are also flat pieces of cloth. or in a pinch someone who just has an old blanket and a pair of scissors.45 flame wars have nothing on the Fuzzy-Bunz ersus Good-Mama’s or Prefold versus Insert fights on the cloth diaper boards.000 the first year we started using cloth diapers. Prefolds & Flats.
or inserts for other types of diapers. There are many formulas for cloth wipe solutions on-line so finding one that works for you shouldn’t be too hard. Commonly rubber or polyurethane diaper covers are used. Prefold. washed) and reused without leaving any buried trash. I also suggest using cloth wet-wipes instead of—or at least along with—disposable wetwipes. I actually mean your “fruit of the loins” baby. The wool covers (shorties or longies) tend to be sturdier than the rubber britches. towels. In order to keep everyone else dry Flats. They can also be used by adults in a pinch—so to speak. but some babies don’t react well to wool—like our youngest. I find them to have the best balance between ease of use (no pins!). Moving right along… . No. and Fitted diapers have to have some manner of cover. I’ve seen some go overboard—repeatedly—and spend a bunch of money on diapers they later don’t like. Many cloth diapers and covers are made by work at home moms.These cloth diapers look almost like disposables with elastic fittings around the legs and back. There are other covers available on the market as well. The CarryFinally we discuss the age-old debate of 1 point. They are basically Prefolds with snap or Velcro fasteners attached instead of needing a diaper pin. essential oil. These wipes can also be field stripped (i. I would definitely suggest learning to use Flats however for that full crash scenario.308 with ACOG baby. Quality definitely varies. You can also use Pocket diapers without an insert as swimming diapers. The Velcro is very easy to use but I find it doesn’t last as long as snaps. Many times diapers we thought looked good on-line did not meet our expectations. They can also be used as rags. But admitting to that is beyond the scope of this article. usually polyurethane.Fitted Diapers.e. so to speak). Start with a supply of Prefolds and then get other brands or types one at a time. bandages. I may or may not have done some low-impact tactical movements with a baby strapped to me when no one (especially mama) was looking. My personal preference is the Pocket variety with snaps. My advice about getting cloth diapers is to do your research and not to jump in all at once. isn’t better to support her than some big pharma or big box retail company? Finally. 2 point. or 3 point sling for carrying our new baby. Flats and Prefolds are also the easiest to clean. and washing. but if you find a good WAHM. Fitted and Pocket diapers are both available in “grow with your baby” models that will fit from very small to larger toddler size. but wool covers (also easily knitted or crocheted by someone with the skill) are also popular. Soak the cloth wipes in water with a bit of soap. Pocket Diapers. especially when reusing for other children. not your . cleanliness (pulling covers off can sometime be tricky if there’s been a blow-out. or baby oil mixed in and keep them in a container (old wet-wipes containers are great) or zip-lock bags. An insert of some type is slipped into the “pocket” between them for absorbency. Some Final Thoughts on Tactical Baby Booty ArmorMy experience leads me to suggest getting choosing snaps over Velcro. Just always make sure that baby is tightly secured and the head is supported before attempting maneuvers.These are made of a layer of fleece sewn to a leak-proof cover. They can be made or cut from just about any cloth and the wool for their covers can be had from local folk with sheep or alpacas. The diaper is secured using snaps or Velcro sewn into the diaper.
Backpack Carriers are the more familiar type and have many different styles as well. Front and Facing Out – A good position for fidgety babies that like to see what’s going on or may be prone to spitting up or ill. Some even have D-rings to clip on your favorite combat accoutrements! Backpack carriers have the advantage of being very easy to use and being better at distributing weight for long hikes. or other G. These take some learning to properly wrap a baby in place. I will wrap up my ever lengthening article with a few notes on the basic carry positions. The type we used has two steel rings on one end and the other end is fed through them as a cinch. as they are very sensitive and easily damaged when young. hip. very handy for passing baby back and forth. Running madly away you will likely trip and stumble at least once. many different brands with their own takes on particular styles (and colors.O. facing in or facing out. family fun. colors. If you shoot back you are going to run the risk of severely injuring your baby’s ears. Some are completely soft and only tie on. which may be good or bad. Some backpack carriers allow the baby to slide from a front to back carry without removing the baby or parent from the carrier. If you get hit. a load bearing parent does have quite a few choices. loose. Those little hands can get grabby though if you are handling anything. baby is probably going to get hit or get fallen on and trapped beneath your body. but can do front or back carries.O. Many use an array of straps and buckles or snaps to keep everyone in place. Escape and evade if you can’t. I’ve found both styles to be effective and comfortable so it is up to you to research your gear and find what works best for you and your baby. This is obviously that nightmare of nightmare situations where your baby is in the line of fire. Slings do allow the best opportunities for mothers to nurse a baby on the move and they are great at keeping the young ones warm. tight. Sling carriers have the advantage of being very easy to make from local resources. laying. but are very versatile and able to hold larger babies than other slings. Conversely.D. back. they also make the person carrying warm.Tactically speaking. Overall. What else is there to say. and sitting) age and size of baby depending. Pouches are also available. so I’m going to limit my discussion to two general classes: Slings and Backpacks. Think of it as sort of a baby bandolier (but I wouldn’t try carrying multiple babies). Sling Carriers are simply long pieces of cloth that are used to swaddle a baby close in to the one carrying the baby. wearing camping backpacks. slings are bit more complicated to use and the excess fabric can get bulky. There are many. LBE (Lil’one Bearing Equipment) While there isn’t probably quite as a large a variety in baby carriers as there are in tactical gear. Another advantage for the tactically minded are the carriers (not all do this) that keep baby buckled in even if the parent unbuckles the carrier. Also not a good place if footing is unsure. colors!). Some have frames. Backpack carriers are generally limited to upright carrying positions. Please keep in mind that men and women have different load bearing curves and each will have their preferred carry position and baby carrier. Slings also have the best range of carry positions (front. They are also not as easy (for me anyway. Wraps are similar but—as the name suggests—use various ways of wrapping parent and baby together. avoid all contact if possible when you have baby. there is no good way to carry a baby in a fire fight. the wife is a pro) to carry larger babies. . which have pouches to hold the baby.
and especially good for napping for both parties. This can be used as a nursing hold for slings and works pretty well when needing to use your hands. I never tried this position. This is also the best position for keeping your hands free. Back and Facing Out – Papoose style! Well not quite. Back and Facing In – This is in my opinion the best overall position for carrying comfort and protecting the baby. but it apparently worked well for the American Indians. I hope this information has been useful and I pray we will never have to use it for baby TEOTWAWKI’s sake. Good nursing position and easiest to comfort baby. Not a very helpful place to put a baby that likes to yank hair or boonie hats.Front and Facing In – A comfortable position for both baby and parent. . Hip / Side – The hip carry will be the only comfortable way to carry larger children in slings.
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