I Said I Would Never Baby Wear… I Was Wrong

Image via Rachel Engel

I remember when babywearing started becoming really mainstream a few years before I had kids — around 2009 or so. At least that's when I started seeing more and more tiny toddlers looking down on me from their mother's back. It freaked me out a little, I'll be honest. It seemed like the baby equivalent of the toddler backpack leash.

Lazy parenting.

But, I found that after I actually had kids, I knew a lot more about what it takes to raise them. Shocking, huh? And what I found was a number of things.

chubby baby pic
Image via Flickr/ tenaciousme

Babies are friggin' heavy! Holy cow. They place this tiny, fragile newborn in your arms, and a few months later, you swear you accidentally gave birth to an elephant. Plus, when you're already lugging a sack of flour everywhere, why do you want to add 15 pounds of plastic in the form of a baby carrier?

512px-Stretchywrap (1)
Image via Wikimedia Commons/ Jennifer Rosenberg

Doing things one handed is a pain, and a lot of things are impossible. Sure, you can swipe your credit card with one hand, but unless someone wants to hold the slip for you to sign, your John Hancock looks like you wrote it with your feet. A baby strapped to your chest gives you both of your arms back, and that is a beautiful thing.

{ MORE: I Was the Perfect Mom ... and Then I Had Kids }

Image via Flickr/ Hug-a-Bub

All babies love their mommies, and then there are some babies who need to be ATTACHED TO MOMMY EVERY SECOND OF THE DAY. Babywearing makes this possible. Happy baby = happy mama.

Baby in a carrier
Image via iStock

Strollers are really great, really convenient Monster Truck-like contraptions that take up an enormous amount of space. While they are helpful in some situations, it's really nice to be able to walk around the zoo as a family without the hassle strollers bring.

ring sling
Image via Mindi Stavish

Imagine going for a walk on a nice summer day. Now imagine that instead of walking and looking at the landscape, you're instead strapped in a horizontal position to large, uncomfortable piece of nylon, which causes you to sweat, while someone awkwardly lugs you around by a handle. Yuck. Now, imagine someone taking you on a piggyback ride as your mode of transportation. Instantly better!

When I would see a mama wearing her baby before I was one myself, I would think, “OK, OK, we get it! You have a baby. Do you really need to wear him like an accessory?”

{ MORE: What Really Happens to Your Body After All Those Sleepless Nights With a Baby }

Yes, I am embarrassed by my ridiculously childish 20-something world view.

Now, when I see a fellow baby wearer, all I can see is how happy and content the baby is, how the mom is able to multitask and bond with her little one, and how my lack of judgment lets me appreciate the Mommy World so much more.

In the words of a fellow mommy-wearer, “Wear ALLTHEBABIES!”

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What do you think?

I Said I Would Never Baby Wear… I Was Wrong

Rachel is a stay-at-home-mom to her 4-year-old daughter, Sydney, and her 18-month-old son, Jackson. Her writing can be found all over the web, mostly detailing her own parenting struggles and triumphs, as well as her life as the military spouse of an active-duty airman. She also writes about her life as as a special needs parent on her blog, Tales From the Plastic Crib, and spends an unnecessary amount of time on Twitter. ... More

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1 comment

  1. Profile photo of Austin Austin says:

    I get that some people like it, but I think baby wearing is more hassle than it’s worth. Gives you t-Rex arms so actually doing things is difficult and I’m not going to carry a load of laundry down my suicide stairs to do laundry, or stand in front of a hot stove, or definitely not bend over a bathtub to scrub it. I’m also so proud of how independent my son has always been, just happy to hang out by himself (just like his momma who also didn’t like being held or rocked as a baby).


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