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Slinging

Not a typo.  I mean slinging, as in using-a-sling.  My mom used to carry us around with one of the Asian ones that look like a square patch of fabric with four really long ties extending from the corners.  I remember wondering how her breasts and back didn't hurt given the way that those long, unforgiving strands of fabric were oft-tied to her chest, around her breasts while dangling my bro from her back by a scant piece of cotton.

Fast forward XX years, and now I am trying to figure out ways to carry my little one around without suffocating her or exhausting my arms.  Enter the modern-day slings.  There are many kinds, more than I realized until I googled it and talked to other mommas.  There are ring slings, pocket slings, bag slings, Asian slings, and backpack-style slings (the kind we're mostly familiar with because of the brand Baby Bjorn).

I have to say, IMHO none of these are fit for newborns (no matter what they say or what you might tell me to the contrary).  The closest I've come is the backpack kind, and I have a really good one (the BECO Gemini 4-in-1).  I've tried the pocket sling and I even just purchased a great-quality Balboa adjustable ring sling (see pic).  Although I was inclined to blame the sling designs at first, I no longer attribute my slinging issues to the carriers themselves.

No, it's the user (me) that's the problem, and it's Baby L.  I am not convinced that I can capably place my 5-week-old into one of these things and have her positioned properly (e.g. no suffocating, no weird bent limbs, no chin-to-chest hampering of the airways).  That's my deal.  Then there's my kid, who is not some lightweight fragile flower by any stretch.  However, even with her solid hefty build, I'm finding that she is not strong/old enough to extend her legs around my body (needed for the backpack style sling) nor is she able to self-correct if her still-loose hip joints and spine are being compromised by a sh*tty position inside the sling.  I am convinced that if she were older and stronger and could hold up her head on her own, then maybe she'd be able to rest in one of these slings without my constant concern about hip displacement and weird leg development from her extremities being cramped up in a strange way.

This is why I don't think a newborn (or *my* newborn, at any rate) is able to rest in a sling, period.  Even if the box says they can, or the store clerk says they can, or my friend(s) say they can.  Mine cannot.  I will not (chiro and physio bills are expensive).  Will I rid myself of my BECO or Balboa? Heck no; they cost a small fortune and I know that one day I will find use for them, just not yet. Of course, if someone shows me how I can do this without my baby's legs being all wonked up, I'm all ears.  Until then, however, I won't be slinging Baby L unless it's an absolute emergency.


Comments

Jel said…
I made a sling for Ethan, similar to a Moby wrap, instruction here: http://freebabyprojects.blogspot.com.au/2011/06/make-baby-wrap-carrier.html

I'll blog it in a few weeks when he gets big enough to use it!
tejanamama said…
http://www.etsy.com/listing/94458763/custom-baby-slingreversible-snugglebug

used this exact one made by this etsy lady for emilia. I picked out different fabrics and mine rode a littttttle lower....but omg I LOVED IT. i used it until she was so big! but i didnt start until she was like three or four months. I can see how it would be tricky with them being THAT tiny. But this was so easy to put away, so thin and light and easy for hot summers. Emilia loved it and had her head sticking out of it, kinda sitting up, as she grew and to this day prefers to be held to walking...and she's nearly three years old! I think this had something to do with things. Elena was a "i dont want to hold your hand" type of kid who always wanted to walk on her own even before she really COULD walk. Emilia is my snuggler :) I think the sling had something to do with it. ;) Man i wish i could hold your little muffin. She's so so so so cute and cuddly looking. Give her a hug and kiss from me and know if you ever tire of her, I'll pick her up in a HEARTBEAT! lol

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