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Welcome to Dupage Mamas! This blog is a place for Mamas to connect, share their experiences, and recommend great finds and ideas (or let us learn from your mistakes!) If you are raising kids in Dupage County, then we'd love to have you along for the adventure!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

My Babywearing Journey

Today's guest blogger is Elizabeth from Wheaton.

I was not always a babywearing mama. Like most things in life, it has been a progression . And this is one progression I am happy with unlike the unrelenting spread of my hips or bottom.


When my oldest daughter Princess was born premature, my husband B and I were so overwhelmed. She was our first baby and we were in no way prepared for her arrival let alone her premature arrival. We felt helpless. There was so little we could do for her. She was so tiny and so vulnerable in her isolette under lights, taking it all in. When she stabilized a bit, we were encouraged to hold her. We sat and held her and talked to her and read to her for hours every day. I think sometimes she was glad to see us leave. But she sat there and looked at us with her gigantic eyes taking us all in.


When she finally came home, she loved to sleep on us. She would sleep on our chest with her head on our hearts and she would snuffle. I am sad to say that I didn’t wear her. She would have loved it- but I was not at that point in my journey yet.


My son Stinky came premature as well but was a bit stronger than his older sister. Even so, he also loved to be held. From the day he was born, he objected strenuously to being put down. He really got MAD. Through parenting him, I overcame the need for a crib or a bassinet or anything else. He slept with us. After seeing me carry him everywhere all the time, my neighbor took pity on me and told me I needed a sling. I was hesitant at first. But then, I tried it and fell in love. And so did he. He loved his sling. He still loves it. He still loves being on my back. The sling was like baby charming. He would see it and be happy. He would go and get it from the closet.


Then came Peas. She brought new meaning to sling love. She even had a ‘sling challenge ‘ in the NICU to see if she could maintain a good oxygen level while in a sling. This was very beneficial for us both. Being worn or held helped her get stronger and encouraged growth and development. It also allowed me to feel like I was helping her, that there was something I could do that was contributing something good to my baby girl.


Through her I learned the love for wraps, for mei tais, and soft structured carriers. My love for ring slings was already well established by wearing Stinky. But with Peas, I expanded my babywearing horizons. I had to really. In our house, it is a rare thing that someone is not tied to me. Peas is now 14 months old and has only been in the stroller twice (and never spent the night in a crib). With her, I have worn out three ring slings. One of my friends jokes that Peas will someday get address labels made for my hip because that is where she always is.


Babywearing has allowed me to actually accomplish things with three kids around the house. Without it I do not see how I would ever be able to get anything done. It also has let me bond with my children and feel close to them. It has been a journey for sure, one I cherish and love.


Elizabeth blogs about her babywearing/parenting journey at Making It Fun.


Farrah July 7, 2009 at 8:59 PM  

Just like any obsession, it has started slow for me too. First a ring sling, then an Ergo and before you know it I have 7 or 8 carriers of all different types. I see one I want and then I "must have it!" I agree with you that babywearing is beneficial for both baby and mama. Having my boys close is just somehow good for my soul. And theirs too! :)
Thanks Elizabeth!!

Katie July 8, 2009 at 1:32 PM  

Wearing your baby is so fulfilling and wonderful. I started late with my daughter, so I only used a mei tai and the Ergo. Now that I have a newborn baby, I love the Moby Wrap. It is perfect for snuggling with him all throughout the day.

Atwood-Family of 4 July 10, 2009 at 10:38 AM  

Katie- I have a wrap too and I love it! It is actually my son's favorite too-he's only 4 months old but it's pretty clear that he likes that one the best!

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