Why you should wear your baby (even if you're not as crunchy as a kale chip)
Baby wearing literally SAVED me during the first 12 months of Charlie's life. Below, I've compiled a few reasons why you should wear your baby. As a general rule of thumb, certain wraps take practise so always use assistance when learning how to properly and safely wrap your baby.
1. Less crying:
This fact alone was enough for me to give it a shot. Charlie cried for hours a day unless she was being worn. Think of this, your beautiful little baby has lived in the comfort of your belly, connected to a food source at all times and surrounded by the warmth and security of her mother. Then, in a few (or not so few) hours, she was taken from this comfort and hurled in the big, scary, cold world as we know it. Baby wearing provides the atmosphere that she is use to, which means less crying and more cuddles. In fact, in Indigenious cultures, where baby-wearing is the norm, babies often cry for only a few minuets per day, in contrast to Western newborns who cry for several hours per day!
2. Traveling is a breeze:
OK, that is an over exaggeration, traveling with any human under that age of 20 is never a breeze, but - it can make it easier! Below, is a picture of Charlie-May and I boarding a plane to visit family when she was only 2 months old. Most airlines will not allow you to take off while your baby is in a carrier or wrap, BUT it makes waiting for and boarding the plane easier as you have the freedom to use your hands to carry your luggage, hand over your ID and grab something to eat.
3. It's Convenient:
Wearing your baby means you don't have to struggle with that oversized stroller in the grocery store or at the mall. It also means that when you forget to pack your entire nursery when you want to leave the house for a half hour, your wrap can double as a change pad, blanket, towel or nursing cover. It means you can use BOTH of your hands whenever you need them!
4. It's healthy for new parents:
Adjusting to parenthood is hard to say the least. Baby wearing allows you the freedom to to do the things you love such as exercise, and the things you want to get done such as making a good meal for yourself or tidying the house. The best part is, you get to bond with your baby (or grand-baby) while you do it!
5. It's healthy for new babies:
Baby wearing helps promote sleep to an over stimulated newborn which means less burnt out moms and dads and more rested babies. The positive stimulation your baby receives while attached to your body helps him regulate his bodies physical responses and exercises the muscles that promote balance.
6. It's fun!
If you venture into the world of wrapping, it can actually be a lot of fun. I've met some pretty cool moms by trading wraps or practising techniques. Between the fancy finishes, soft structured carriers, or structured backpack style carriers for hiking - you and your baby can go just about anywhere TOGETHER!
People have a lot of opinions about parenting in general, and baby wearing is just one of those hot topics. Don't let anyone tell you that your baby is "manipulating" you when they cry to be held. I can promise you two things:
1) you will not have to carry your baby off to college in his favourite wrap; and
2) the first few years go by really fast; take the time to enjoy the cuddles and closeness that baby-wearing brings