Monday, June 7, 2010

The Unintential Advocate

I'm not one to talk to strangers.  I was not blessed with my father's gift of gab as he can make friends with a wall. I'm intimidated by small talk as I find it awkward.  If you know me you'll laugh but when it comes to strangers, I'm pretty shy.  However, as a babywearer in Savannah, it looks like I'm getting over my fear.


There is plenty of scientific evidence showing how babywearing is good for both baby and parent. Benefits include better parent-child bonding and a more socialized baby. While those are great reasons, the main reason I wear Max is because it's crazy convenient. Every other benefit is just gravy.

Max hates his car seat so when out and about, wearing Max lessens the chance of a breakdown.  Plus, car seats are ridiculously heavy without the baby.  Add my almost 14 lb son and I can barely pick it up. Note to self: Get butt back to gym.

While it may be common in lots of larger cities, here in tiny little Savannah, those who babywear are rare.  While I expected a few stares, I am quite surprised by the response I get when I've got Max in a sling. From church to Starbucks to the grocery store, I have not once worn him without someone stopping me. I was worried that with the recent recalls on slings that I would experience some negativity but the response has been overwhelmingly positive, or at least one of curiosity. Brett thought he would tons of "What the heck" type stares but instead he gets big smiles.  Ain't nothing sexier than a man carrying a baby.

When questioned, I start spewing the benefits of babywearing.  I tell them all about my Maya Wrap or Brett's Ergo.  I explain how my sling isn't the type that was recalled and that no, he isn't going to fall out of it.  I extol the ease of use and how it's doesn't hurt my back.  I talk about the joys of being hands free and how it allows Max to see the world or simply fall asleep to the rhythm of my heartbeat.  I even go into the various types of slings, wraps and carriers available. The conversation usually ends with the other person saying "I'll have to check that sling out" or "I need to tell my daughter/niece/sister about it".  Without trying, I suddenly turned into a one woman babywearing commercial!

I guess my enthusiasm for the joys of babywearing outweighs my crippling shyness.  Just another lesson learned on the Motherhood Express.

6 comments:

Katie said...

We have one like Brett is wearing and Brendan typically screams... what kind of sling is that and how do you get it on/Max in it? Curious....

~Katie

Laura @ The Things I Said I'd Never Do said...

Katie- The one I use is a Maya wrap and there are instructional videos on their website. Basically it straps Max against me. It's a "ring sling" and there are dozen of kinds out there. Babysteals.com and greenbabybargins.com often have them come up for a decent price. I really like ring slings because they grown with the baby and there are several different positions you can put them in.

With Max, he hated all of them at first, so we slowly got him used to them. I would put him in it for a few minutes each day, gradually increasing the time. Maybe that might work with Brendan. I would suggest going to a store that sells them and trying one out. Lots of boutiques will let you test drive the sling around the store.

I hope it works out for you. I LOVE babywearing! When we come home for Thanksgiving we need a mommy playd ate. One where the husbands or grandparents watch the boys and we go for beer!

Christie said...

I loved wearing abby in my Moby and I can't wait to wear little man when he gets here, I didn't start wearing abby till later and if I could get her in around my belly comfortably I probably would wear her now. For a few weeks the only place she would sleep is in her wrap. I am thinking we may get a beco or an ergo for Donnie this time around although he has a moby that he loves as well, so we will see :)

Brett said...

Is it ironic that you're being an advocate on the comments to your blog post about being an advocate? To Katie, though, Max used to cry in the Ergo too, but I realized that his feet were getting squashed when I put him in. Once I made sure his feet were out to the sides he calmed down in a couple minutes and was great from then on!

Jenny said...

I didn't become an avid babywearer until #2. Mostly because I only had a Bjorn and, well, if you have one you know they totally suck. I now have both a sling and a Mei Tai. Love me that Mei Tai! Check it out if you're ever looking for something new. Now that she's 1 I love that I can wear her on my back. And she loves it too!

Stephanie said...

Isn't babywearing wonderful? We have an ERGO too and I still wear our 1-year-old in it almost every day. :)

I tried carrying around the bulky infant car seat with my firstborn...and it was so heavy & inconvenient! Then, I discovered babywearing - and it's so much better (for both me and baby).

stephanie@metropolitanmama.net

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...