We had quite a crew today– and none of them more than a month old (save a big sister)! We reviewed using the newborn adaptation of the Tula Free-to-Grow, some ring sling tips, and the classic Moby stretchy wrap in the pocket front wrap cross carry.
We also had a question about other local parenting support groups. This is just a few of the groups in the area but we will open up discussion in our Facebook main group for members to share other local parenting groups. It can be hard to keep track of local groups because they become more or less active as the volunteers or founders have time for them.
IRL Groups (with meetings, events):
- La Leche League Cedar Rapids
- Mercy Hospital Weekly Breastfeeding Support Meeting
- Hike It Baby
- UIHC’s Beyond the Bump (which we’ve partnered with)
And now to the newborn tips! One of the biggest issues new parents face when using an SSC, like the Tula Free-to-Grow, is that it is brand new. It’s extremely hard to adjust, even to the point of feeling like maybe it’s stuck and won’t adjust any further. Chances are that it is just stiff from being brand new. It will get better. The more you use it, the easier it will be to adjust. However, if you have the option, and know that you have weaker hands, you might want to consider purchasing a used carrier (and we host a B/S/T group on Facebook if you want to buy locally).
Second issue: fussy newborns. You’re a bit nervous and your baby can tell, and perhaps they can also smell milk and are frustrated that the boob is not forthcoming. The stress of trying on a new baby carrier –especially in a public venue– with a fussing (or raging) newborn can be a bit traumatic. However, bouncing up and down quickly, from the knees (if you can), while you buckle a carrier, finish off a wrap, or adjust a ring sling can put the baby into a quiet alert state. Once you feel secure in the carry, start walking, just around the room is perfect, as this will help baby relax into the carrier. It will also help you find if there are any uncomfortable places that need more adjustment. Bonus tip: if baby really seems to loathe a carrier without any physical concerns it might be the smell of the carrier. Try making it smell more like home by sleeping with it in your bed or occasionally wearing it, sans baby, under a sweater or coat for a few days (or nights). Washing it using baby’s detergent (where applicable) can help too.
And if you would like to view the video of our meeting, it’s available on Facebook, in the main group’s videos. It includes a demonstration of the Tula Free-to-Grow in newborn and toddler modes and tips for newborn ring sling tensioning.