When Carter was a baby I thought baby carriers were the car seats that came with our stroller travel system. In fact, he spent a lot of time in his car seat. Too much time in there. With Elizabeth I did use hotslings and carried her a lot more often. Praise God that I have been able to fully experience the benefits and blessing of wearing baby. Lilah loves to be close to mommy and her carriers make it possible.
My favorite all time carrier is the Beco Butterfly. We have been able to experience the world as a family thanks to this carrier. We go places and mom and Lilah participate!
Family Mission Trip
Our latest family adventure was attending a reenactment at the Shaker Museum at South Union. We were asked to be as authentic as possible and were given clothing to wear. One problem, my beco butterfly is not exactly authentic. So I did a little research and was surprised to find out that there is very limited information out there on wearing babies in America in the mid to late 1800’s. What I did find out (without doing any extensive research) is that most likely American settlers didn’t wear their babies. There are references in journals and memoirs from American settlers commenting on how strange it was that Native Americans strapped their babies to theirselves. So what did they do? Most likely babies spent most of their time in baskets (cribs) or were watched by siblings or older family members while the mother went about her work. No wonder mothering has become so difficult for us. The ancient tradition of wearing your baby was lost and figuring out what to do with baby was put in its place.
So what did I do? I basically improvised. I used my peanut shell turned inside out.
It is not as easy to use as the beco butterfly with a near 20 pound baby, but it did work. Carrying a baby on your hip all day is near impossible so we settled on the warm, fleece sling even though it wasn’t authentic. But, we were portraying Shakers and they wouldn’t have had children anyway!
Wearing baby has so many advantages. Lilah has been such a fussy baby that I am not sure how we would have survived without me wearing her close. She feels safe and comfortable being close to me and dad (when he straps her on). When the kids want to go on a walk we are not restricted to places that we can take a stroller. Mom and Lilah can participate in everything that the rest of the family is doing: gardening, long hours at the farmers market, long walks. There really are no limitations for us. Another huge benefit is that it is a great way to get your body back in shape. Wearing baby uses your abdominal muscles in a great way, perfect for the Post Purdum period. No wonder women in other countries are still wearing baby (and toddlers)!