Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Babywearing and Me: The Beginning (up to 2006)

Babywearing for me was a concept I have always felt made sense, but I wasn't really familiar with it in the form I use it today until early 2007. My first child was born in August of 2006, but before that I was a baby carrier. Quite literally, lugging them in my arms, on my hips, on my back, however I could get them latched onto me enough to be mobile with them.

My sister is almost 9 years younger than me and she was my most carried babe. Unfortunately I don't have any adorable pictures of her curly blonde headedness when she was a baby or toddler but trust me when I say if I was around her, she was in my arms a lot. When she outgrew cradle style holding my carry of choice was a hip carry, and her on my hip as I walked around was a comfortable, comforting thing for me.

I got older, so did she, and soon I carried her mostly on my back piggy back style or else she walked. As she got more to the walking all the time stage kids that I babysat took her place in my arms and on my hips. I love babies, love kids, love nurturing.

Fast forward to 2006. At about the beginning of my third trimester I finally began to believe I might actually get to take a baby home at the end of my pregnancy and my closest friends were urging me to start acquiring the things I was going to need for my baby.

We were short on space and so I knew we were not going to have room for a lot. One of the things I knew I wanted was a baby carrier. I didn't know much about them, except that I'd seen them used. At that point I was familiar with only three kinds: Snugglis, baby Bjorns, and slings. I called them generic "slings" but really what I meant was New Native pouch slings, a type of sling that as I'd find out later, is very difficult to get sized correctly because of the limited number of sizes and the ranges they are meant to be for.

I chose a New Native pouch sling in blue (my favourite colour) and it arrived just before the birth of my baby. I did not own a stroller at all at this point.

After Tobias was born our first time babywearing was when he was a week old. Sadly I have no pictures of him actually in the sling (or maybe that is a good thing because the fit was not very good). I do however have one lone picture of him about to go into the sling. Sadly that is my only babywearing picture of 2006 (I promise there will be more in coming posts though).

You can see the pouch sling over my left shoulder

We used the sling a handful of times at best. It was way too big and he hit my knees when he was in it. By Christmas time I had given up on babywearing. It was uncomfortable and impractical in cold weather (or so I thought!). Then in early January 2007 something happened that literally changed my parenting life...

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