As it’s National Babywearing week I thought I’d write a bit about my experiences with babywearing so far.
I got a sling late in the (newborn) game. We started off with a baby bjorn style ‘crotch-dangler’ found on freecycle. Horribly uncomfortable for both of us, I used it just once.
Arlo was already about two months old when I decided to try a Moby. It didn’t get that much use, if I’m honest. I found it a faff to tie; too long a process when you have a screaming baby making demands, too difficult
to tie outside when the ground is wet. And if you need to take it off when out, where the hell do you place your young baby whilst you retie?? I never got my head around these basic logistics.
The long lengths of material made me hot and somewhat claustrophobic. Arlo didn’t much like being in there, he needed constant movement and fought to get out. I think this would have been a different story if we’d used the Moby from birth.
Saying that, it can’t be as bad as I remember, I have picture evidence to suggest that the Moby did indeed have its fair share of outings.
Cut to five months old and we had a problem. Arlo hated the buggy. He had hated it for a while and every trip caused my stress levels to rise dramatically as I thought about how I would deal with this journey’s inevitable screaming session. Once he started he would not stop. We’d always end up carrying Arlo in one hand and pushing the buggy with the other.
Anyway, in a moment of weakness after two hours of solid buggy screaming, I caved and bought an Ergo. The cost (and difficulty in identifying the genuine from the fake on Ebay) had deterred me from buying one sooner. All I can say now is thank god for that moment of weakness.
I couldn’t be without my Ergo now. It’s supportive and easy to get on in seconds, and it’s always in the bottom of the buggy in case of screaming emergencies. The Ergo was my number one holiday essential this year, great when visiting prehistoric caves, and museums that were inaccessible by buggy.
Without wanting to preach too much, I will say that If you are considering a baby bjorn type sling, it is well worth looking into the benefits of wraps and SSCs (soft structured carriers) and knee to knee support.
We all love babywearing.
Arlo is never more calm and content than when in the sling. He loves taking everything in from our height, and falls asleep in seconds when the hood goes up.
If you asked Sam, he would admit that he has always been a bit jealous of the sleepy snuggles with Arlo that breastfeeding grants me. Babywearing gives him some lovely down time with Arlo and he can’t get enough. Sam was pretty addicted to the Ergo at one stage.
As for me, I love having his head just under mine, leaning in to kiss him whenever I want, and talking to him without needing to raise my voice. I love that babywearing gives me back my little baby.
I’m sad to say that at 12 months old I’m finding him a little heavy for my beloved front carry now, but there’s a lot of life left in the back carry.
I do wish that I had started babywearing from day one. I have visions of my next baby pretty much living in a wrap from birth. I can think of nothing nicer.