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Really odd question but how did you learn how to use a sling? With DD I gave up pretty quickly because I could never figure out how to keep her and me comfortable at the same time, but would love to try again when DS arrives in a few weeks. I love the convenience of a pram/pushchair when I have to do shopping and stuff, but like the idea of having snuggle time while out for walks or doing the school run.
Would also welcome csing recommendations, preferably something in a nice funky print fabric!
Mamma to Hannah, age 8 and Jonas, 2
The best way is to go to a sling meet if there is one running near you as other parents will be able to help you with positioning of different slings and will have different types of slings for you to try. When ds2 was born I used a stretchy wrap sling like a Kari me and. a ring sling as you can put them on first and then pop baby in. I used to put mine on before going out in car so I could transfer ds straight from car seat to sling.
Single mama to a little Steiner family of 3. Living joyfully and trying to our bit for mother earth and to live a sustainable, conscious ‘green’ life.
As Lauren said I used a stretchy and a ring sling when ds2 was tiny too. But I got them both when pg and spent hours in front of you tube while pg with my slings and my teddy bears practising so by the time he arrived I knew how to get him in even if I needed practice to get it right. With all slings the key is getting it tight. That way they and you feel much more comfortable… but it does take practice so practice often when you’ve nowhere to go or else you’ll end up getting flustered and giving up. Also, practice when baby is settled… Maybe after a feed. Don’t try and practice when they’re stressing as that will make you stress. Once you’ve mastered it, it really is bliss! A stressy baby is immediately settled and often asleep within seconds when in the sling.
But yes, practice with a doll or a teddy bear now so you know how to get them in it at least. You tube is great for this.
Good luck!! xxxx
mummy to dd(15), ds1(12) and ds2 (5)
LETS number 144
Baby wearing is FAB!
I also started with a stretchy (lovely purple Tricot Slen which I bought online direct from Babylonia in Belgium) until A was about 5 months old. I used youtube to help me learn how to do front cross carry and have pretty much stuck with that all the way so far (A is now 15 months). When he got to about 5 months, he started to feel a bit too heavy in the stretchy, which I was gutted about as I LOVED my purple wrap! But too heavy he was, so I decided to get a woven wrap (lovely Lenny Lamb in Autumn colour as A is an October babe ~ also bought online direct from LL in Poland) But I couldn’t quite master using it so I joined a local sling meet and learned there. It was there I was introduced to ring slings (I wanted something for quick trips to and from the car, nipping into shops etc) so I got another Lenny Lamb in sunrise rainbow, also direct from Poland. When I bought my wraps/sling at the time I found it cheaper to get them direct from the manufacturers. Oh…we also had a Beco Gemini (fox pattern), which A’s daddy mainly used until he found him too heavy in it. So then he upgraded to this all singing all dancing Osprey backpack carrier, which I’m sure if I used with A in it I’d fall over! Wow, re-reading this paragraph makes me realise that we have actually had a LOT of carriers!
Before A arrived I used to practise with a stuffed toy bunny Then after he arrived I used to practise as much as possible with him around the house before venturing out with him.
I found it really was worth persevering. Each time I never thought I’d master any of them but became a dab hand with all 3, even though I haven’t experimented with different carries yet. I had a one-to-one lesson at the sling meet on back carrying with my woven but haven’t managed to practise with A yet, due to one thing or another. I’m always a bit nervous with a new wrap/carry but feel confident that once I start using it I’ll be ok. Must admit I’m toying with the idea of getting a mei tai for back carries but maybe that’s because I found the woven a bit more complex with back carrying…!
I remember having A snuggled in my stretchy wrap when he was a couple of months old, being out on the fields in the snow with our 2 dogs. I also remember doing dishes with him on me! Even now, at 15 months, I soothe him to sleep in the woven wrap or sometimes pop him in the ring sling to potter round the house, when he just wants to be carried. A loves being carried and when he doesn’t want to be walking/down playing when out and about, he’s very happy being worn Just to add, A has always been a fairly solid boy and I think all 3 wraps have definitely saved me from a bad back!
Good luck and hopefully here’s to some wonderful happy snuggly slinging!
Would totally recommend a stretchy one as the others have said. So comfy and soft and you can pretty much keep them on all day, just popping baby in and out! I have quite a few of very knowledgable BW friends so they have been kind enough to show me all sorts of carries - My favourite are woven wraps as I think they are the comfiest by far and my kids seem to love them too but there is a definite learning curve with them. Having said that, they don’t take long. Just a few practises with a teddy and then a couple with baby in front of a mirror/partner helping you, and you’d get it, easily. I like the way that a woven wrap feels like a part of you, whereas other slings feel like attached to you.
We have a couple of mei tais too which are also good - my husband likes them although agrees woven wraps are very comfy. I’m just getting used to back carries right now as my baby is getting so big!
I’d second going to a sling meet or library - slings seem to be such a personal choice for everyone that you’ll probably click with one. We got rid of our pushchair and solely use slings now, which I find far easier with two. People will really help you at a sling library or meet and then you can go home and watch youtube videos and practise!
It is addictive though, which I never thought it would be…Just about to buy a ring sling for those nifty car trips as well as a toddler softai and our third woven wrap :/....can’t help it
We have used a woven wrap (Didymos) with both of ours from the very beginning; DD1 has occasionally still gone in it even at age 4. DD2 is much more active/eager to walk than DD1 ever was, but when you’re out and your toddler needs a nap on the go, or when they’re sick and sad and tired, there’s really nothing like wearing them. It’s true the learning curve was a bit steep with the woven wrap, but not unmanageable—I would definitely recommend going to a sling meet once you have the *actual* baby in your arms, as practising with a doll is really not the same (at least, it didn’t help us!). Having someone knowledgeable show you how to do it is key. And don’t be shy to keep going back and asking for help/instruction in the beginning—I did need to be shown again and again.
I would just add that actually you can take the baby out and pop it back in as many times as you want in a woven wrap, too—I do all the time! With the regular tie where the two sides cross in front (I forget what it’s called, but it’s the only one we’ve used—our two have both preferred being carried in front well past the usual age). And if you can figure it out, I would heartily recommend learning how to breastfeed your baby in the wrap—I didn’t manage it with DD1, but I learned how with DD2 and it has been miraculous; so easy to have both children with you out and about when one of them can just be latched on to the boob the whole time! In fact I love it so much that I would personally opt for wearing the baby and take a pull-along shopping trolley (like this: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Home-Essential-Rolling-Utility-Shopping/dp/B008TBUDRC) for the shopping; I find it easier to move around crowded shops/markets when I’m not pushing something.
I also used a stretchy wrap, then a connecta which is easy to use and v comfy on front and back. ????
Mummy to DS born March 08 and DD born July 2010
GP Lets No 119
Don’t rule out a structured carrier - boyfriend & I both love our boba4g, so quick & easy to get on & baby in. Very convenient for use in & outdoors.
Didn’t wear #1 much, wish I’d persevered, but didn’t get confidence! #2 has lived in the boba after early weeks spent in Kari Me stretchy. He was 9lb6oz at birth and I found he really sagged in the stretchy!
Didn’t plan this exactly, but pushchair is now in shed, as he’s 6 months now & never been in it!
In summer I also found wraps too hot, all that fabric! Although they do look awesome, maybe I’m a bit lazy & just like to buckle on the boba!!
Good luck - it’s worth persevering! X