Babywearing Hampton Roads

Keeping caregivers and children close since 2013

IBW 2014: Sharing the Adventure After Wearing Days are Over

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So I’ve talked a lot about how my babywearing journey began but I think I’m finally ready to talk about how it’s finally over…

I think this is truly the last time Carmen and I wore out of necessity. We were in the grocery store and she went on and on. Whining, mini melt downs and we just couldn’t figure out how to keep her happy, so I threw her up in the Kinderpack and that was that. No second thoughts about it but it was also the last time that I truly found the Kinderpack as a solution for that kind of behavior.

Suddenly, I found myself aching every time we wore. Being an educator for 2+ years has taught me every trick in the book to make yourself comfortable while wearing. I had tried most of it and had
asked for more suggestions and then you just finally realized that maybe it’s because she’s about two thirds your height and nearly a third of your weight. Even though the Kinderpack was comfortable, there wasn’t really much I could do to keep my feet from aching, my legs getting sore and from waddling when I’d wear her. She is almost 4 years old after all. She’s independent, doesn’t really run off, holds hands well and even though she happily rode in the Kinderpack, she would also happily walk next to me. That’s when Carmen and I made the very difficult decision to call it quits.

I think it’s really important that that last sentence be the main focus of this post. “Carmen and I.” WE chose to quit wearing. It was decision that we decided TOGETHER. I got down on her level with the Kinderpack in hand and we talked about it. I asked her how she felt about it. “Good,” she said.

“And are you ready to walk with me and hold my hand from now on?”
“How would you feel if we gave the Kinderpack a new home?”
“So no more Kinderpack rides, is that okay?”
“Yes, okay.”

Even though I had the opportunity to talk about this with Carmen, I knew that I could have made this decision on my own. It was like an unspoken agreement between her and I but I think I needed to hear it from her so we could move on. So I could move on. And it brings me back to all the times that I may have had sour judgements about others and how ashamed I am which is really what provoked me to write this. This wasn’t an easy decision! How could I have judged someone for making this one on their own terms just like Carmen and I had done! When it physically pains you to wear and your child is happy on the ground, you don’t have to explain that to anyone else.

Dad got to experience the last KP nap.

I know there are times when you have to make that decision just for you and maybe it’s not an agreement between you and your child. Carmen went through a very violent kicking phase when she was angry and I had to end wearing sessions. If she didn’t show interest after that, I alone could have easily ended our wearing days right there and no one could have told me that it wasn’t for the better! Judgement is inevitable while parenting and I strongly think it’s just in our human nature but we judge less when we are educated. When we get insights to others’ stories and when we understand fellow parents, we judge less.

So you’ll still see me at meetings, I may not have a child attached to me, I’m not pregnant and I may not have plans for more but this community has brought me so much joy and I’m here to stay for as long as I can. Babywearing is a parenting tool I feel should be available to everyone and just because we are done, it’s still my duty as a fellow mother to teach you to wear your baby safely and comfortably. Traditionally, it’d be your aunt, your sister, your mother, your grandmother but times have changed and we’re here for you through all stages. Educating you while still pregnant to when you decide to call it quits.

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