My name is Gabrielle; I’m married to Logan (USAF) and we have one wonderful child, Gavin (7 months old). I have lived in Virginia Beach since April 2012, moving from Busan, South Korea where I was stationed as an Active Duty soldier with the United States Army. Originally from America living in NY, FL, NC, HI, AZ and DC, traveled due to profession, training chef for Roy Yamaguchi before joining the Military.
How long have you been babywearing? Share how you learned about it or got involved.
I started wearing Gavin in a SevenSling when he was just a few days old! At around one month old I was gifted a Moby by a wonderful local mama because I was donating breastmilk to her son. After doing some searching on the internet I realized there were so many more options to help carry and cuddle with my child. I kept up with babywearing originally because my husband was stationed overseas, so I was raising little man on my own all the while still being a full time soldier. I *needed* to wear him so I could accomplish cleaning the house, washing bottles and breastpumps and just for some good cuddle time.
How has it helped you or changed your life as a mom?
Babywearing absolutely saved my sanity as a geographically single mom. I was able to do everything I needed to around the house, while shopping, and even go for walks to exercise and still have my sweet boy close to my heart.
What is your favorite carrier (or carry) and why?
My favorite carriers handsdown are woven wraps. Although I have tried everything there is to try, my favorite brands are Oscha and Didymos. I find SSCs [soft structured carriers] and RS [ring slings] all have their purpose and place and I own each of these. I have tried many brands and sizes, but just like cloth diapers, I found the brand and sizes that work for us.
My first woven wrap was a Didymos Indio I bought from a super sweet local mom. I fell in love with wrapping immediately because of the versatility of it. The first thing I actually used it for was as a cover while breastfeeding at a local mall!
My favorite wrap is my Didymos Katja. It’s a perfectly beautiful rainbow, it’s easy to wrap with, and it will stay with me forever even when I am done having munchkins. Even though I have many “high end” wraps, this one is perfect for babywearers of all skills. It’s thick enough to be sturdy and supportive but at the same time very breathable. It has different colored rails so I was able to learn which rails I need to pull to perfect the carry. If I had to have a second favorite, it would be Oscha Starry Night Ash. It’s stunning in person and has a unique texture that grips nicely! I prefer blends of cotton, hemp and/or linen.
My favorite sizes are 6 and 4. I like 6’s for FWCC which I use literally on a daily basis in grocery stores, the mall, the house, and for beach walks. It’s supportive and can be worn like that for hours… and… lil man’s precious face is right in front of me to kiss. For back carries, which I am still perfecting, I like a size 4. I like the epic Double Hammock, RRRR (Reinforced Rear Rebozo Rucksack) with a CCCB (candy cane chest belt) and for quick up and downs a Back Cross Carry.
My biggest babywearing accomplishment… being able to use a breast pump all while having a sleeping baby on my back. Feed them babies!!!!
What has been your biggest struggle?
But just like ups, I have had downs with babywearing. Yes, he has popped his seat and almost fell on the floor. Yes, I have dropped him (on the bed!) while learning back carries. And…Gavin likes to explode his diapers while being worn. Epic, I know. I would also like to try a MT and to get my husband to wrap!
There is still much I need to learn about babywearing but I feel I have had a great beginning to learning and have even had the chance to teach other mamas! I have made a few wraps myself out of 100% linen, dyed them, and given them to friends who just didn’t have a woven wrap in their budget.
If you were going on a dream vacation for a few weeks, which carrier would you take and why?
If I were going on vacation, to Paris of course, I would bring a size 4 wrap with a pair of sling rings so it could double as a ring sling, and I would bring daddy’s carrier which right now is an Ergo options with homemade Doctor Who panels!
What do you want others to know about babywearing?
Overall, I LOVE Babywearing. I love having my son close to me, I love not pushing around a stroller and bumping into things, and I even love the strange looks when people think to themselves “what is she doing to the child” while wrapping in the parking lot. I also love the winks and smiles as you pass other mamas you don’t know but are babywearing.
Thank you for sharing with us Gabrielle!!!