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The Hell Known as Having Three Kids in Diapers All at Once

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Photograph by Getty Images/iStockphoto

If you've had kids close in age, you're aware of the chaos and shitstorm (literally) that comes with it.

Sure, it's great in many ways — it's easy to keep track of hand-me-downs and they can go down for a nap together (which is pretty much the best). Also, as soon as one enters a trying stage, another follows suit, so how to handle it is fresh in your mind.

When I had my third child, my oldest had turned 3 a month before and my middle child was one. The plan was to have my oldest potty-trained by the time the baby came. It was a nice goal, but that didn't happen.

Have you ever tried teaching a child to not pee or poo in their pants while chasing around a toddler who's learning to walk and being so pregnant you feel like you're going to pop at any moment? It was impossible and something had to give. I simply could not bend over to wipe a bum or sit and read 11 stories on a stool without feeling like I was going to bust something. I was positive every time I tried to rush my very unwilling son to use the loo, I was going to go into labor at the same time.

So, I decided we could get to the potty-training later, which meant I would have to turn into a diaper-changing machine for a spell. And that's exactly what happened.

Every morning, I would wake up and the smell of an outhouse would permeate my nostrils. We all know those diapers get loaded every night, even if you give your baby's bottom a fresh one at 1 a.m. The assembly line would start.

Having three kids in diapers didn't last long — about three months or so — but those three months prepared me for anything life could possibly throw at me.

My oldest was so busy trying to get a jump on his day and attend to his truck collection and stuffed animals, I'd just change him as he was standing up. I didn't have the energy to fight him — I had to save that for my second child who was still such a squirmer. Changing her diaper always ended in a bath. She could spread poop all over her body like Picasso could spread paint on a canvas.

I'd save the baby for last, since he was the most cooperative, but as soon as I'd get his diaper balled up and in the trash and get myself cleaned up to start breakfast, they'd all be weighed down with a gallon of pee and we'd start the process all over.

I wanted to do the right thing and use cloth diapers, and we tried for a week or so but I couldn't keep up with the laundry and would reach for the disposables anyway. I used recycled diapers, though, to reduce my feelings of guilt.

Having three kids in diapers didn't last long — about three months or so — but those three months prepared me for anything life could possibly throw at me. I learned how to change a diaper with one hand. I became a master at doing it when they were sleeping. And, to this day, I'm confident I'd be able to fold and ball up a diaper smaller than anyone else in the world.

I'm glad those days are over and I still have dreams about leaky diapers, poop and trying to change change two diapers at once, but we made it through.

If you've ever had more than one child in diapers at a time, I know you feel me on this. You are literally spending over half your day staring at butt cheeks, trying to get the damn wipes out of the container and wondering when the madness is going to end.

It does end, I promise, but next came my bright idea of trying to potty-train my two oldest children at the same time which went askew very quickly and made me forget about the diaper-nightmare for a bit. But that's a story for another time.

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