I know a lot of people who love baby wearing. I read lots of blogs and babycenter posts that say handling a toddler and baby is achieved by baby wearing. It’s how stuff gets done when you have your hands full or a needy baby. The carriers are so cute and the moms and babies look so peaceful that I really wanted to be a baby wearer. I bought ergos, a ring sling, a woven wrap, a mei tai… All cute, thinking if they’re cute I’ll use them. And I figured with all the different styles I’ll find at least one that I love and I will become a baby wearer.
I’m not a baby wearer. Insert the sads here.
Ok, technically, I am. I’ve had many baby wearing moms say if I wear my baby I’m a baby wearer. And I do wear him some. But I love my stroller so much more. I love having my space and I love my baby having his space. The biggest relief to me was this week when I put him in the stroller and he loved it. I’ve been wanting to walk and get back into a non pregnant shape, but it’s been hard wearing the baby for me, it’s just so much more hot and sweaty when I’m already hot and sweaty. So I was finally able to put him in the stroller with his big brother and go for a non baby wearing walk. Yay!!
But I do think that there are many carriers that the general parenting public isn’t aware of, and maybe would help someone like me find a way to wear their baby if they’ve been unsuccessful with the more popular carriers, so I’ll share my baby wearing trials and opinions here:
My favorite is my woven wrap. It was also the more expensive. Think Moby but longer lasting. Being woven rather than stretchy it’s more longer lasting. Mine is by Girasol. I actually want to buy another wrap because this thing is a beast to carry around with me, but the comfort (for me) and sleepy baby factor hasn’t been duplicated in another other carriers for me.
Second on my list is probably my ring sling. This one is by Little Frog. I love it for its quick and easy up factor. It’s also very portable. It also can easily be used with my toddler if needed.
Next would be my Ergo performance. I’m not a big fan of “structured” carriers (think buckles and straps) compared to my woven, but if I have to have one, this would be it. It’s got a mesh front which is great for where I live. I used to have a Beco Gemini, and I felt like that one was hard to figure out. The Ergo is easy to me. What doesn’t work for me as well on this one is that the straps run right under my arms (which doesn’t work well for a hot running engine like mine).
Lastly would be the mei tai. In all fairness, I’ve only tried it once. It didn’t look nearly as comfy for my baby and the fabric wasn’t very comfy. I’ve heard good things about pricier ones, mine is just a cheap one by Infantino (I got it for $17 at Target to be exact).
But to me – baby wearing hasn’t made me much more productive. I was disappointed because I’d read so much about how housework or dealing with a toddler is so much easier with baby wearing! To me, it’s hard to do housework with a baby strapped to my chest. Yes my hands are free if I’m trying to do dishes or fold laundry, but I have to work around this appendage on my chest. And dealing with the toddler – bahahaha! Maybe those who said this have calm toddlers. Mine will kick at me when I’m changing his diaper, trying to get him dressed, trying to put his shoes on, trying to do anything that isn’t exactly what he wants to do… And that’s not cool if I’ve got the baby on me.
However, baby wearing has come in handy during growth spurts, and wonder weeks, and developments where baby is just needier and fussier than usual, or will only sleep on me, and my arms or tired or my butt is asleep from recliner duty. I also never leave home without one because if I’m at the store shopping I do take them both in in the stroller but if the baby starts melting down and needs to be held – I still need to be able to finish up and get out of there and my carrier has saved me with that. So it does have usefulness to me for sure – but it’s just not something I do all the time, and I do like to have my space. I just have to keep telling myself that that’s ok.