Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Take on Octomom

I was up late last night and a special came on TV called Octomom; the unseen footage. Usually I stay clear of the news and subsequently didn't know much about her other then some woman who already had six kids had octuplets. *Interesting side note when I tried to run spell check on the word octuplets and I got sextuplets, quintuplets and couplets.

As I am watching the chaos of media I feel bad for the mom aka Nadya. She looks scared and shocked by how much attention she was getting. She said,
"I'm just a mom why are they so interested in me?"

I'm not going to pick apart this woman and her decisions, I don't know what I would do if I was in a position that I either had to implant my embryos or they would be destroyed. Especially if I believed as she does, that they were living children. I do want to point out two major things that she can do to save money, live conscientiously and keep her carbon footprint as low as possible.

1. Immediately switch to cloth diapers. The book Diapers: Environmental Impacts and Life cycle Analysis claims that over 300 pounds of wood, 50 pounds of petroleum feedstocks and 20 pounds of chlorine are used to produce disposable diapers for one baby EACH YEAR. Holy cow man, that woman has 10 children currently in diapers which means JUST THIS YEAR her family will have consumed 3000 pounds of wood, 500 pounds of petrolem and 200 pounds of chlorine. Not to mention that over one ton of *illegal* sold waste is dumped in our landfills by each child in cloth diapers.

I realize that she's probably too tired to eat let alone wash diapers but I noticed that she has a small army in her employ to help her. She even managed to sneak away and get a tattoo.

Cloth diapers, as well as being eco friendly will save her approximately $12445.20 if she uses prefolds and covers, $7261.20 if she uses fitted diapers with diaper covers, $9277.20 if she uses LolliDoo(TM) eco-pockets(TM) and $7261.20 if she uses a low cost pocket diaper. *calculations based on 96 total diapers or 12 per baby

At any rate, those are HUGE savings worth taking a look at.

2. Ditch the formula I know easier said then done. I realize that it's not possible for one woman to exclusively breastfeed 8 babies simultaneously however I have faith that the milk share community would happily provide her with breastmilk for a low cost. Mothers will reach out to those babies. I suggest asking yahoo milkshare and calling La Leche League.

The cost of formula feeding one baby for one year on average is $1643. Multiply that by 8 and you get $13,144. I am blown away how much it can cost to feed a baby formula.

The environmental impacts are also astounding. Peggy O'Mara explains,
"Manufacturing formula requires miles and miles of cows. Each grazing cow that produces milk for artificial baby milk needs about one hectare (10,000 square meters) of land. To create enough land for cows to graze on, forests are cut down, which leads to deforestation, which in turn contributes to soil erosion and water contamination; or land is used for cattle that was previously used to grow food for families. In addition, cow flatulence and excretion account for 20 percent of the world's total annual emissions of methane. While methane is second only to CO2 in contributing to greenhouse gases, it is much more destructive of ozone than is CO2. A similar equation could be used around soybeans, an alternative to milk, which use significant pesticides, water, and petroleum resources in their production and distribution.

O’Mara also asks us to consider the energy used in heating baby formula: “One study determined that producing one kilo of formula in Mexico costs 12.5 square meters of rain forest.” In the U.S., this cost is less noticeable, but there is still an energy cost to transporting and heating formula."

This is bad stuff folks, if you want to read more about the health risks of formula click here

I don't believe in judging others and for that reason I don't want to trash the woman but I do wish she would be more responsible.

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