Confession of baby wrapaholic

I have a confession: I’m addicted to babywearing. Okay, so maybe I have more than one confession to make. I’m also addicted to the wraps and carriers that come with love for baby wearing.

Although I don’t own as many as I would like, and definitely not as many as other addicts I know from the babywearing mommy groups that I’m part of, I still own more than one, which in my hubby’s opinion makes me an addict. The real addicts probably have close to 20 wraps or carrier per mom, whereas I only have 5. LOL. Yes, Mr husband is rolling his eyes at me now. Apparently it’s a hard thing to grasp as to why I need more than a wrap/ carrier. (What? I need different ones to match my clothes, of course. 😝)

Well, he can roll his eyes all he wants. We both know that he loves babywearing his babies too, so I think that’s why he lets me get away with my babywear indulgence. Haha. (Btw, I love you hubby 😊)

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That;s him babywearing Big Warrior in Taiwan when she was 9 months old

There are are so many reasons to love babywearing. Here’s my top 10:

 

#1. Your baby gets to stay close to you

They don’t call it the fourth trimester for no reason. Infants are meant to stay close to their parents, and be held or carried as often as possible. No, carrying them all the time isn’t going to spoil them (Little Warrior weaned herself off the carrier by 1 1/2). Babywearing gives you the perks of being able to kiss and smell your baby as frequently as you like. Definitely a plus point for me as I LOVE to kiss and smell my babies. It’s like my Rescue Remedy, the act of it calms me down.

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Littlest Warrior in a Soul Sling Lotus Ring Sling at 4 weeks old [Photo credit: Collaboration with Light]

#2. Freedom!

Need to cook dinner? Go to the toilet while at the mall? Go mountain hiking? No worries, just wear your baby and you’re hands free and good to go! I can’t recall how many times babywearing saved my sanity. I’m literally on the go with all my kids because I would go insane staying at home the whole day. I also get to breastfeed while attending to my older kids or when I’m out and about. And the best thing about it, usually no one notices you breastfeeding your child when they’re in a wrap or carrier.

My 5 year old trusty Jumpsac Baby Ballerina Carrier for my all my travels (first pic: Big Warrior at 10 months old in Taiwan/ second pic: Little Warrior at 6 months Perth)

#3. Babywearing = peace & quiet

I can’t begin to tell you how many times people have asked me why I have such quiet and wonderful babies who sleep through dinner dates and shopping trips. I’ll let you in on a secret. Babywearing. Simple as that. The rocking motion that the baby gets from being carried while you walk lulls them to sleep. The tightness of the wrap around their little bodies gives them security and reminds them of their time in the womb where they’re safe and sound. Even if they aren’t asleep, they’d be happily exploring the world quietly and contentedly in the comfort of a wrap.

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Littlest Warrior at 6 weeks old in one of the prettiest wrap I’ve ever owned, the Kokadi Marie Im Wunderland 

#4. Babies are cuter in a wrap

I’ve lost count on the times I get stopped by a passerby commenting on how adorable and lovely my babies look all snuggled in a wrap. Let’s face it. Babywearing turns heads. Babies look almost angelic when in a wrap because they’re calm and happy. And sometimes their lips are “squished” in such a way that make them irresistibly cute, like literally Anne Geddes babies kinda cute. LOL

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Please ignore the less than appetising public toilet background. LOL. But doesn’t Littlest Warrior look simply divine?? *cue in the “aaahhhhhhhh*

#5. Babywearing moms are absolutely beautiful and babywearing dads totally rock

Maybe I’m bias, maybe I’m not. LOL. Babywearing parents look absolutely amazing wearing their babies. More so when you have a beautiful carrier on. I reckon there’s nothing more manly than a babywearing dad. They portray confidence because they aren’t afraid of how society might judge them for sporting a baby wrapped around their chest. And that’s one of the reason’s why I adore my husband. He isn’t one to shy away wearing his babies in public just because the carriers and wraps I have aren’t exactly in manly colours.

 

 

#6. It prevents kidnapping! (and secretly keeps Aunty Petunia from smothering the baby with slobbery kisses)

I’m not kidding with this one. There’s absolutely zero chances of anyone kidnapping your child when they’re literally strapped up onto your body. Well, they technically could still kidnap you, if they were willing to kidnap you together with the baby. But I doubt anyone would want to go to that extend. It makes more sense for them to move to their next little target who might be laying down quietly in a pram. Having a baby wrapped closely on to your chest also helps prevent unwanted hands, mouths, and breaths away from your precious little one. I always make sure to wear my babies when attending family functions and social gatherings. You’ll never know when some inconsiderate person with no common sense might just think it’s okay to carry your babies or kiss them right after a cigarette puffing session. Trust me, even people with a PHD, or doctor’s degree can forget their common sense when there’s a baby involved. *roll eyes*

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My first experience with babywearing was with a Peanut Shell sling. I noticed people tend to be less invasive with the baby when she’s being carried in a wrap/carrier/sling. 

#8. It’s indirectly a workout for your whole body

It’s like doing squats or crunches while standing up. Why? Because you’re constantly carrying weight, and are forced to tuck in your tummy all the time. The weight of the baby is more balanced throughout your body if you wear a carrier or a wrap, compared to a one-sided sling.

 

#9. No bulky strollers. Yay!

Have you ever noticed how much preparation goes into bringing a baby out? Nappies, extra clothes, bottles and what not if you’re using formula or expressed milk, wet wipes, change mats, etc. Those would have taken up the size of a decently huge baby bag. And then there’s the stroller. Once you’ve parked your car, you’d have to open the boot, lug out the stroller, open it, open the car door, take the baby out and strap the baby on. Oh, don’t forget to put a blankie for the baby. Now imagine you’re a babywearing mama. Once you’ve parked the car, you’d open the car door, put on your carrier or wrap (which is really lightweight), and put your baby in. You’re hands free! And you’d have hands to push a shopping trolley for groceries, a task which would prove to be quite difficult for a stroller mom. You can’t well be pushing a stroller and a shopping cart with just 2 hands, can you?

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Little Warrior in my first woven wrap, the Ellevil Paisley in Blue

 

#10. Babies get to see the world from a better angle

Have you ever stopped and imagine how a child feels being so small? If you haven’t, try squatting down while talking to your partner. You’ll understand how belittle and frustrating it gets sometimes to have to constantly look up at someone while talking. That’s how children feel, especially when they are being lectured at or talked to. It makes a big difference if we were to stoop down to their level when talking to them, or bring them up to our eye level when we engage with them. So instead of exploring the world from below (where it’s usually a sea of legs and feet and toes, and dogs), they get to appreciate their surroundings through your angle.

Left pic: My failed selfie with Little Warrior in my Ergo Petunia Picklebottom Carrier/ Right pic: Little Warrior in my Jumpcsac baby

Babywearing has been an extremely amazing experience for me, so much so that I’m now a proud babywearing advocate. It played such an important role in my attachment parenting journey. Gone were the days of insecurity as a first time mom, where I was constantly told to ignore my baby’s cry, and to not hold them so often for the fear of overdependency. Call me a hippie mom for all you like, I now co-sleep with all my children, I wear my newborn all the time, I hold them close whenever they need me to. Babywearing has taught me so much. I’m sure I will still find new things to learn as a parent of three, but one thing I’ve learnt that has proven to be invaluable, is that babywearing is the best thing you could ever do for your child. They get to feel you close and hear your heartbeat, that’s all a newborn wants, and that’s the best gift you could ever give them – YOU.

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My 2 year old won’t be learning her ABCs and 123s yet, and I’m perfectly okay with it

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Today is the first day of playgroup at Steiner for Little Warrior. She’s been waiting forever for this day. Having seen Big Warrior go in to class day in and day out, she’s often asked me when it would be her turn to be a big girl and go to school. Well, today is the day. 😊

 

While other kids are learning their ABCs and 123s, Little Warrior is learning about the world, through interacting with Mother Nature and listening to story time. And that’s perfectly okay. She’s busy learning the necessary human survival skills, that she might not necessarily use per se, but those traits are what will set her apart from the rest of her robotic peers. She gets to plant gardens and pick flowers, and find out how to work with Mother Nature and appreciate her beauty and resources. She gets to walk barefooted, climb trees, and occasionally get a glimpse of wildlife in the school’s backyard as we are fortunate enough to be surrounded by bushland. Like today, we had a beautiful owl visit us at the playgroup garden. It’s not everyday that one gets to see a wild owl upclose and personal. What an amazing experience for us!

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She doesn’t know her multiplication times table, nor can she write her own name yet, but that’s perfectly okay. She’s busy playing and learning more relevant things like how society works by interacting freely with her peers. They engage in a world of free play where they dictate how the playing goes, where it happens, and who gets to be involved in it. There’s no social pressure on how she’s suppose to be, what she’s suppose to say, or who’s she suppose to maintain good relationships with. She learns how to socialise and be part of a community without unnecessary social influences. She does chores, and learn how to work as a team with her playmates. She gets to learn how to make decisions pertaining to her life from an early age, instead of being helicoptered and told what to do all the time. She gets to learn that every action comes with a reaction, so the next time she knows what to expect when she does something.

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She doesn’t know her written ABCs yet, and she can’t recognise 123s, even though she can communicate as fluently as a 2 year old should. And that’s okay too. She learns how to express herself and be confident with her voice. She sings and says blessings. She learns about empathy and sees the goodness in the world. She will learn to appreciate mothers, fathers, and educators alike, because she will see with her own eyes how everyone respects each other at playgroup despite their age, financial background, and race differences.

 

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Sure, academic education is important. However, I think education about the self and play is equally important. If you don’t know how to be comfortable with your own skin, and be confident with your ability to make decisions, then you won’t go far. So many of our younger generations aren’t equipped enough to go against the tide and think outside the box, and just be different. Our current society is raising a future generation of robots, teens and young adults who follow the herd and do not question what is being taught. Do we really want that for our children? I don’t. I really don’t.

 

I’m prepared to face the insanity of having to reason with my 2 year old on why we don’t run around naked when outside the house, or teach my 5 year old all the proper names of her body so that she’s aware that nobody is allowed to touch her sacred body parts without her consent. I teach them to say no to hugs or kisses when they’re not up for it, even if it’s us or the grandparents asking. I teach them that it’s okay to say they don’t like certain food, as long as they’ve tried at least once. And I tell them it’s okay to reason with us if they feel the need to voice out their opinions.

 

There are so many things worthy of learning that aren’t academic. Little Warrior, like her sister Big Warrior, will not be officially educated in the academic sense until she turns 7 according to the Steiner system. I’m totally okay with it, proud even, because I know that like her sister, she will thrive and blossom into a wonderful little human being when the time comes.

 

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