If you’re nearer the beginning of your babywearing journey, there’s a chance you have at some point felt overwhelmed, outnumbered, defeated, and maybe even a little embarrassed. There are so many experts posting their expertly beautiful selfies showing off their expert carrying technique and every time you manage to get your baby up she’s screaming, you’re sweating, everything is bunched and bulging and crooked and uncomfortable, and there’s no way you’re posting a picture of that anywhere public, even if it could result in some helpful tips.
I’ve been there. We’ve all been there. Babywearing has a learning curve like anything else, and since most of us didn’t have the benefit of growing up with babywearing all around us, we’re starting from scratch.
Now I know there’s a chance you won’t believe that we’ve been in your shoes, so I asked some of our BWI of STL volunteers if anyone would be willing to send me some photos of their early attempts at babywearing. And you know what? They were *excited* to do it. They jumped at the chance and filled the thread with “then and now” photos. They were excited to suffer a bit of sheepish reminiscing because it’s worth it to encourage new wearers to continue on!
Lots of us love stretchy wraps for squishy new babies, but seriously: *WHY* is there so. much. fabric to a Moby?? (Turns out, it’s because a stretchy really needs several passes over baby to be supportive. Oops!)
I think a lot of us make errors with newborns because that’s when we’re just starting out wearing. Plus they’re just so tiny and difficult to manipulate in a carrier!
But even if your little one isn’t a newborn, any time you try a new thing, it’s likely not going to be perfect the first time.
Keep in mind that these aren’t just “right way / wrong way” photos with beginners and experts. These are examples of the same caregiver starting, learning, and achieving. (And I promise, all of the babies survived.)
So yes, if you post a picture in the Facebook group and an educator sees something that could help you and baby wear more safely or more comfortably, we are going to point it out with a few tips. But please do not mistake that for judging or shaming, and we absolutely do not condone or tolerate “dog piling” on someone for less than ideal wearing practices. All of the volunteer educators have studied and practiced in order to be able to relay the “best practice” methods for safe and comfortable babywearing in all types of carriers.
We are not here to judge. We are not here to shame. We have all been there. Our goal is to walk with you on your babywearing journey for a brief time, to help you discover how babywearing, as a parenting tool, can best serve you and your little ones exactly where you are at that moment.
If you are still hesitant to reach out for help at a meeting or on the Facebook group, just remember: we all started somewhere.
At BWI, we’re here to meet you wherever you start, or wherever you are right now.
Plus it’ll be awesome to have all these pictures to show our kids what they survived when they’re grown up. 🙂