If you’ve ever wondered more about our Volunteer Babywearing Educators (VBEs), about each of our babywearing journeys, this post is for you!
Before my son was born in early 2008, I did a little reading and knew I wanted to wear him. I bought a padded sling and got a front pack from a friend. I thought we were all set! When he was born, we tried the carriers out. They really didn’t work like I expected them to. They were uncomfortable, hard to adjust, and I wasn’t always sure he was positioned correctly. Sometimes, they even felt unsafe. I did a little research online and decided to buy a pouch. We watched the videos, read the instructions. We were all set this time! No, he hated it. We could not find a comfortable position for him. I did more research, found TheBabyWearer.com, a community of passionate babywearing parents from around the world. I decided to try a wrap. Finally, babywearing clicked for us! Soon, I bought a mei tai, too. Since then, I’ve come to love every style of carrier for its own unique purpose. I’ve tried dozens and dozens of brands and researched many others. I wore my son nearly daily for the first 2.5 years of his life, well into my pregnancy with his sister. When she was born, I really was all set. I got more practice tandem wearing and perfected nursing a newborn in many styles of carriers. At 1 year old, she is worn daily and sometimes tandem worn with her brother or a friend.
I started doing babywearing education, informally, when my son was 1.5. I knew the value of trying carriers on with hands on help and how hard to find it was in our area. I did presentations to private groups, small and large, in homes, playgroups and childbirth classes and staffed booths at women’s and parenting festivals. I met our other VBEs along the way and they became involved in educating, one by one. In 2011, we decide to form a BWI group. I’m at nearly every meeting, demonstrating different carriers with my now 1 year old daughter and sometimes with her 4.5 year old brother. I love how easy babywearing has made the transition to two children and I love helping others to enjoy the closeness and ease the babywearing provides.
KSC is on babymoon with new baby girl, A. She started doing babywearing education with B in 2010 and is a founding VBE and co-leader for BWI of Peoria.
My Babywearing Journey
Before I ever had my kids, I was downtown at a Farmer’s Market and I saw a mom wearing a child. I believe it was the first time I had ever seen anyone babywearing and I remember thinking it was so cool. She was using a green woven wrap in a front carry and busily doing her shopping. She didn’t have a stroller slowing her down, she look so confident, at ease and her child looked so content. That is how I want to be a mother and I knew that I was going to have to research babywearing.
Fast forward till I am pregnant with my daughter and taking Bradley Classes in preparation for her birth. The Bradley Method is taught in a series of 12 classes. I can’t tell you how many of the classes featured the instructor or her husband wearing their youngest daughter. They used ring slings primarily and further cemented the idea of babywearing in my mind.
I started researching the topic and came across a article recommending the New Native Pouch. I ended up purchasing this carrier to try with my daughter. In retrospect, this was not the right carrier for me and I wish that I had tried other carriers before purchasing. Luckily shortly after, I did have an opportunity to see many carriers. My birth class had a reunion and our Bradley Instructor had arranged for a presentation by our very own Volunteer Babywearing Educator (VBE) B. This was the first time that I had met B and she walked our class through the different types of carriers and then gave some one-on-one help. After some email help from B as well, I ended up purchasing my first woven wrap – a storchenwiege.
I have added another child as well as many more carriers to my collection. I advocate babywearing to all of the pregnant people I know. Just recently I was certified as a VBE myself. I look forward to increasing my knowledge and to helping to spread babywearing to other parents as well.
I have been babywearing for over 4 years. I have two boys, ages 4 and 18 months. Before I was even pregnant with my first child, I knew that I wanted to babywear. Once I started researching babywearing and the benefits, I was completely sold. My first carrier was an Ergobaby SSC with an infant insert and I started wearing my son right away. I loved being so close to him, with all the conveniences, like having my hands free and nursing coverage. At that point in time, I knew zero people who were babywearers and I rarely saw anyone in my community wearing their child. When my son was a few months old, I met a small group of like minded mamas and my babywearing interest grew as I discovered other types of carriers such as ring slings, pouches and wraps. Soon I had a carrier for several occasions and to match my clothes! I continued to wear my older son throughout most of the pregnancy with my second son and even still occasionally wear him. By the time my second child was born, I was fully immersed in the local babywearing community and even helping promote awareness of a small local group. A few of us decided to bring our group to the next level and become part of Babywearing International. At first, I helped with paperwork and promotional things, but have since become a Volunteer Babywearing Educator. I love introducing and helping new moms and dads find a new lifestyle in babywearing. I am sad that my “baby”wearing journey had ended, but happy that I still have a few more years of “toddler”wearing to enjoy!