Saturday, November 28, 2009

Baby/Toddler Wearing

The other day Sarah and I were playing in the living room with her stuffed animals and I just so happen to take out one of the many baby slings I used to wear her in over the past nearly two years.

She then decided she wanted to try out the baby sling herself, my fiercely independent little one, and wear her furry friends, just like mommy did her. Of course, in that moment I couldn't wait to fire up the camera to catch some cute pics.

As a result, I was brought back to the many memories of times I wore Sarah in the variety of slings and baby carriers. I loved having her so close to me so often when we were out and about, and it was also a tremendous convenience. It was nice not having to tout around the stroller if I didn't need to bring it. Baby wearing was also great for trekking in and out of the City, where elevators were not always available, and also doing chores around the house. Sarah loved being carried. It was a win win for both of us. Daddy even enjoyed the baby wearing too.

According to Dr. Harvey Karp, author of the "The Happiest Baby on the Block," he identified five proven methods called the 5 S's -- swaddling, side/stomach position, shushing sounds, swinging and sucking -- designed to help soothe baby and comfort them especially in cases when they are cranky. I often told my husband, that Dr. Karp needs to add a sixth "S" -- slinging. Maybe Dr. Karp if you are reading this, consider in your next edition this additional step of slinging as part of your wonderful read I highly recommend for all parents.

At first I thought that too much baby wearing would make Sarah too dependent on us and not want to be held by others, but that has indeed not happened. If anything, Sarah is an extremely compassionate child who likes hugs and affection from people she knows well. And, she is demonstratively affectionate just like her father and I are and we are thrilled with the benefits baby wearing has given us not only to soothe her but to help her recognize the value and comfort of closeness amongst people she knows.

Despite storing away some of my slings due to Sarah's growing proportions and being somewhat heavier to tout around town, I do have a couple of slings I have been able to carry her in a few times here and there when she's tired and doesn't want to be in the stroller and wants me to carry her. The slings really help my back and secure her in place really well.

Thanks to the creative minds behind the development of many slings. These great inventions help keep baby, and toddler, close and I highly encourage other parents to consider baby wearing as it's a bond that is forever established.

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