This meeting was a whirlwind! We had so many folks stop by, it was wonderful, thanks to everyone who braved game day traffic to join us. It was so busy we got to our live stream late and then managed to broadcast it in our B/S/T group. Oops. Our apologies to anyone looking for it in the main group.
At the request of a member, we had a pre-meeting preemie clinic (say that five times fast) in order to avoid exposing preemies to bigger kid germs. We did some stretchy wrap troubleshooting and helped adjust a Lillebaby Grow with Me for a squish (our term of endearment for squishy newborns).
Stretchy Wrap with a Squish Tips:
- Pre-tie: With a stretchy wrap, you can pre-wrap and tie off before picking up your baby. You can put baby into and take them out without removing or untying the wrap– which is awesome for running errands with a squish if you drive. Tie on the wrap at home, baby goes in the car seat for the journey, and then you can tuck them into the wrap inside the car before venturing forth.
- Snug: With a squish, the stretchy wrap should be wrapping snugly enough to be form-fitting- but not tight- without the baby in it. It is easier to loosen the wrap if you feel it’s too snug than it is to tighten it because it just stretches and bounces back into place.
- Brands: different brands use slightly different fabrics, for example, Boba Sleepy Wrap has a terry cloth feel on one side and less spring back; while Moby is a thicker fabric with smooth jersey texture on both sides and with a very strong tension to it, it hugs curves. One isn’t necessarily better than the other, it’s really a matter of personal preference. But if you find yourself uncomfortable with one brand of stretchy wrap, try another before giving up (i.e. come to a meeting!).
Tall Babies: Once again, we met with some tall babies, who are just at the cusp of their legs fitting in their SSC carriers without an insert or modification. The issue was that because they were so tall, but still somewhat floppy, they did have adequate head support. It kind of misses the point of babywearing if the wearer has to keep one hand on their babies noggin’ while they attempt to get work done.
Our fix: try the carrier without the insert. How does it feel? How does baby feel? In the one case, baby only needed a little padding behind his butt to fill out the deeper seat preventing a swayback position. This helped him fit the wider seat without boosting him up any higher. In another case, baby, though younger than recommended by the manufacturer, fit the carrier just fine without any modifications. Not all babies will develop and grow at the rate set by the manufacturer– if you have questions about whether your baby is the right size for a carrier or carriers, please come to a meeting or contact us with your questions/concerns.
Ways to get baby on your back:
- Put them there yourself using Superman, Santa Toss, Hip Scoot, etc methods.
- Use a chair to support the baby on top of the carrier and pull them onto your back.
- Ask someone to place baby on your back (and later remove them).
- If the child is old enough, ask them to climb onto your back and then climb down again.
There is a lot of emphasis on having to get baby onto your back alone in babywearing circles but it’s not necessary. It may be preferable in situations where there aren’t people to help, chairs to use, and the child isn’t old enough to take direction. BUT barring those situations there is no shame in just having someone help you or using a supportive surface. Folks with limited spine mobility (who are still okay to lift and carry weight) may simply be incapable of the kind of twisting and stretching coordination required to get a baby on their back alone.
When Baby seems to hate the carrier: after ensuring that nothing is causing pain for your LO but they still seem to hate the carrier, what can be done?
- Smell: if the carrier is new to you it could very well be the smell, even after it’s been washed. You can try wearing it without baby in it or sticking it into your bed with you at night to help it smell like you. Alternatively, it could be the smell of something they want. Breastfed babies may freak out when so close to breastmilk scent without satisfaction, in that case, try introducing them to the carrier after being fed for a few days or weeks.
- Positive Association: babies who hate transitions may associate the carrier with caregiver nervousness and their own panic at being transitioned from one place to another. Try introducing baby to the carrier with something they find pleasant, like a walk outside or in a stimulating environment. After a few experiences, the carrier will be associated with comfort and they will be less likely to get upset being put in it.