“Are you going to sit in the backseat with him?”
“No,” I confidently responded.
“What if he needs to be soothed?” my father-in-law wisely asked.
“He’s been doing well sitting in the back by himself,” I said with all the naivety of a new mom.
I should have known then that the last leg of a 2 week, 2,000+ mile trip would go wrong.
Each time we travelled I carefully packed a bag with plenty of wipes, diapers, food, snacks, and a change of clothes for baby and me. I always kept this bag within arm’s reach. But after 2 successful plane rides and many more hours in the car, I got lax. For the return trip home, I carelessly threw items in the bag. I realized I was running low on wipes and I didn’t refill the case. Nothing was neat and it certainly wasn’t easy to find supplies in the dark.
Before we got into the car, my son spilled water all over his clothes and soaked his shirt and undershirt. The luggage was already packed so I changed his shirt using the spare set of clothes I kept in my bag. Big mistake.
2 hours into the drive and the baby starts screaming. I mean giving his lungs a real workout. I reach around to find out what is wrong and I feel something damp on his carseat. Coupled with a stench in the air, I knew it was a blowout diaper. Of course we were literally passing a rest stop as I made this discovery. We rode for a few miles before we spotted a gas station.
At the gas station, I remembered — there were not enough wipes for this job, I did not have another change of clothes for baby and I did not have a change of pants for myself. Only 2 hours away from home and I was stuck with a blowout diaper. Using a cup of warm water, soap, and a cloth diaper I washed him up on my lap. I did not make it out unscathed.
I wrapped my naked son in a blanket for a while until we found some clothes in the luggage. I used Lysol wipes to clean the carseat. Went inside the gas station to wash my hands thoroughly. Nursed my child then we continued our trip…with me in the backseat of the car still wearing boo boo pants because I forgot that I needed to change clothes too.
We are not going anywhere for a while but when we do, I’ll be sure to stock my bag appropriately.
Essential items to pack in your travel diaper bag:
- Diapers (pack enough for at least 1 full day and then add some more)
- Wipes (galore)
- Cloth diaper or a wash cloth
- Travel size soap and lotion
- Travel size diaper cream
- Food pouches (so much easier and less mess!)
- Plastic bib that can easily be wiped off
- Small toys (pack options that don’t make noise)
- Extra onesies
- Change of clothes for baby (eh make that 2)
- Change of clothes for mommy
- Plastic bag for soiled clothes or diapers (I like to have a stack of gallon storage bags just in case of …whatever)
*Tip: Place everything in individual gallon storage bags so you can reach in and grab what you need quickly.