Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Babywearing Meetup

We had one of our first Big Island Babywearers meet-ups this past month. I had such a wonderful time hanging out and meeting all these wonderful Mamas. I wasn't able to get pictures of everyone that came, but here's a few that I can share:

This mama spent some time in Africa where she learned how to carry other women's children before she came back to have her own. This is a traditional carry that doesn't require any fancy equipment. All she uses is a yard 1/2 of cotton fabric from JoAnnes.

This mama is using a woven-ring sling, perfect for those tummy-to-tummy newborn snuggles.

A babywearing Mama-to-be, wearing her baby-doll in an Ergo made just her size! So cute! I Love to see the little ones in-training!

The mama below on the right is wearing a style of carrier I have never seen invented before, which is a wrap/mei-tai combination.
Basically you take the traditional style mei-tai and sew on long, wide, wrap straps. They sell for 150-200 dollars on the inter-web, and I can see why; this carrier is beautiful, comfortable, well-sewn, requiring loads of fabric and detailed handi-work. I would love to try sewing one someday!Here's the back. Look at the those comfy straps, spreading out over her entire back!:

And finally, here is Jonah and I, hanging around for a rest and a snack. He is nursing discreetly in my favorite baby carrier, the mei-tai. This is one of my homemade ones, which my husband designed, and I pieced together.
Overall, this was a great meet-up! I'm so glad we got this group up and running. Babywearing has been such an integral part of my and my husband's whole parenting experience, so I am always happy to share my knowledge and experiences with others, who are just starting out. Although, here on the Big island we see babywearers everywhere! It is a lot more culturally acceptable to carry your little ones close here, which is wonderful. For once I don't feel like a minority, and find that most moms I come across already share the basic fundamental beliefs we do. It's nice to have that kind of like-minded support in life. This is my co-babywearing Leader, Breanna below. I didn't get a picture of her at the meet-up, so I borrowed one off facebook. She is amazing at wraps and has about 1000 of them in different colors and styles.
She has convinced me to be more wrap savvy in my next life because of the comfort and ability to carry toddlers on your back.

Babywearing is based on ancient traditions of child-rearing, which are centuries old. As long as people have walked the earth, they have found ways to conveniently carry their babies. Most of the carriers from other cultures were traditionally made for women to keep their small children on their backs while they worked in the fields, or traveled.
Today we have taken these traditional carriers and adapted them to our modern needs.
We wear our babies while we cook, clean, walk, dance, or shop. But the most profound reason we wear our babies is to bond. Nothing compares to the rush of nurturing and loving hormones I feel as I carry my baby around everywhere I need to go. I can feel his soft hair, and smell his sweet fragrance, and fall in love over and over again.

Now that Jonah is 2, we don't wear him around as much. I believe that babywearing is a fundamental part of attachment parenting, which encourages parents to make choices based on what feels right, natural, and instinctual for them and their babies. It felt really good for us and our babies to be close to each other for the first year 1/2 to 2 years, but now that Jonah is huge and mobile, we prefer walking or the stroller. Although, I think Breanna has convinced me that toddlers can be worn on your back til they are 18.

Babywearing is such beautiful thing, with each situation requiring conscientious thought and awareness.

For more on babywearing, click on my Babywearing label here.

1 comment:

Da Denninghoff's said...

What a fun group meet up! I just bought an Ergo carrier. My husband thinks i'm crazy since I already have a meitai wrap, but I like to mix it up depending on the activity. I'm excited to hold my little one in the carrier soon:)