('new' mother is a bit misleading, as the mother in question had an older son at home, but she was quite 'newly' a mother again)
I was in Soft and Cozy Baby in Baltimore on Sunday. You might remember me as one of the mamas with the baby slings. I helped you try out a Moby Wrap, and you really loved it. You were a natural, and your little one, on her due date no less (she came three weeks early), seemed so snuggly and content.
I was really excited when you bought the carrier on the spot. I'm always leery of encouraging others to 'waste' money, but the light that came into your eyes when we helped you get your tiny daughter into the carrier -- it was such a beautiful thing. All the fatigue of caring for a newborn, the nursing struggles, the recovery from your surgery -- it all seemed to fade away into this radiant 'click.' 'This is easy, this works.' For the mothers and caregivers of newborns, what works is absolutely precious.
This is babywearing.
It was a lovely experience for me as well. I've recently become somewhat withdrawn, but seeing your gorgeous smile reminded me of why I'm passionate about slings. Thank you.
Anyway, I hope it's still working out for you, and I hope, whether or not you're having difficulties, you'll come to our next meeting this upcoming Saturday. I'd love to see you again.
And I hope ... no matter what, that you feel safe with your baby in a sling. I know we talked about keeping her head from falling chin to chest, and how important it was for you be able to see her face and monitor her breathing, and explained about head control and positional asphyxiation. I'm not worried that it scared you -- I feel this information is critical and I wouldn't have it otherwise. I'm worried because there is a big storm brewing, and it brings misinformation and fear that I can't really protect you, or any parent new to babywearing from.
But the reality is that your tiny baby is as safe, or even safer, in her Moby than she is anywhere else you might put her. Babywearing provides three factors proven to reduce the risk of SIDS: 1) vestibular motion, upright positioning, and skin to skin contact. Isn't that amazing? That there's a way to care for your baby that is safer for her and more convenient for you? It's not supposed to be like that, right? The Puritan work ethic stipulates that harder = better right? All those baby books too -- it's better to make the children more convenient, not the parenting. Right?
I'm so happy that you saw it wasn't true, and that wearing your wee one coincided so neatly with your convictions. You saw that what you wanted to do wasn't impossible or self-sacrificial. That other women wanted to do the same and had rediscovered how humanity has done it from our earliest history.
Sorry to ramble, Dear Lovely New Mother. But I really am happy for you that you discovered how simple and amazing babywearing can be, and I'm happy for myself that I was there to see it.