Before I had Anneliese “on the outside” I knew I wanted to give babywearing a go. I’m not sure where I first heard of it… probably somewhere in all of my research into natural/evolutionary diet, breastfeeding, etc. I guess I got sucked into the natural parenting rabbit hole.
But you really don’t know what type of carrier will be “for you” until you try. And at first I thought I’d like a pouch sling. I thought wraps and ring slings looked too complicated.
Well, my older sister gave me a pouch sling, and I used it in the beginning. My girl seemed comfy enough in it and fell right to sleep if we were out and about and she was in it. But soon she got too big to comfortably be in cradle hold in it, and since the sling is not adjustable, I couldn’t wear her snugly enough in other positions yet. I’ve kept it around in case it works better when she gets bigger.
My other older sister gave me a stretchy wrap style carrier, which she swore by when my niece and nephew were younger. It was simple enough to put on, even if it did take a minute or two with all the wrapping, but it was HOT, and my girl hated it. Once she was in it, too, it was next to impossible to adjust, so nursing in it was pretty much out of the question as well.
Then I got the chance to review a Snuggy Baby ring sling. It was AWESOME. Even though I had a soft structured carrier that Anneliese and I both really enjoyed… the simplicity of ring slings attracted me. They are NOT complicated, even if it seems that way “from the outside.” It’s so quick to pop them on and off, and to put the baby in. They’re also adjustable while wearing them, so I can lower Anneliese or angle her differently without taking her out, so it’s simple to nurse with her in a ring sling. I can have her tummy-to-tummy with her legs tucked in, which is a position she loves to fall asleep in.
Or I can pop her legs out of the bottom, which lets her body be a little snugger against mine. I can scoot her over onto my hip, which is great for her being able to “see the world” while I’m wearing her. And I can face her outward on my front (she’s basically sitting cross-legged) if she is well rested and interested in what’s going on around her. Later on, when she’s a little bigger, she can actually ride on my back in the ring sling!
I got the fever. For sure. I started making myself some ring slings – dupioni silk ones (strong, but VERY lightweight), with pockets on the tail (so I can throw my phone, keys, lip balm, burp cloth or whatever in there and truly be hands-free). First I made this brown one with a happy owl family embroidered on the tail.
In these pics, we were going to a friend’s Halloween pre-party party. Anneliese loved being close to eye level with all the big people, and listening to them chat and joke. She was really alert the whole time, looking from face to face.
Then I made myself this pretty blue one, with a fox embroidered on the pocket.
I love the color of this one!
We’ve gone on walks with our new slings, run errands, and just puttered around the house. My baby girl, who always hated to be worn in the house really seems to like my silk slings, maybe because I can cinch them so tightly, so she is very close to me. Recently, we baked cookies together, and she got to see all the action while I explained each step to her.
It’s pretty precious when she gets sleepy, and rests her head on my chest. She’ll grip the tail of the sling, or hold on to the rings. Sometimes she lets her hand dangle and scratches the fabric slowly. Since dupioni silk is slubby-textured, it makes a pleasant “scritch, scritch” sound when she does that. I think she finds it calming.
I don’t know if it’s the same for formula-fed babies, but it’s pretty common knowledge that breastfed babies smell amazing. At least to their mothers. Sometimes I catch myself just breathing in my girl’s sweet smell… like warm buttery vanilla. The ring sling makes that just that more convenient! Also, kisses are always right there waiting for me.
I’m so excited that we’ve found babywearing, and found a way for it to work for us. My girl is going to see so much of the world from up there, and I love the closeness we have together.
I’d really LOVE to try out a lightweight woven wrap. Ouch! That babywearing bug has bitten me HARD.