When my little girl was a few months old, she would only sleep in her sling. She needed the sense of familiarity that being so close to her mommy provided; to hear my heartbeat, to feel the warmth of my skin and to relax to the rhythmical movements of real life.
When wrapped against me, she would settle with the gentlest of rocking, a little swaying or even just a potter around the house. And so, in a plain brown wrap, she nestled into my chest. For us, this practice was simply a nameless necessity. Back then, I didn't even know that babywearing was a "thing."
Now, 5 years later and ahead of the arrival of my second baby, I have more than maternal intuition alone convincing me to continue along this well-trodden pathway of carrying our little ones. And I'm not alone, since the babywearing industry has more than quadrupled in that timeframe. Each and every month, more and more wraps, slings and carriers are launched into this competitive market, many of which selling out within minutes.
And far from simple block brown stretch fabric, the sheer luxury of materials and designs now available wouldn't seem out of place splashed across the pages of Vogue. In fact, high-end slings have actually already graced those elusive pages, wrapped around the babies of supermodels... it seems that slings are just as much a fashion statement as they are a practical component of our parenting toolkits.
One thing is certain; babywearing fever has arrived. Yet there is so much more to this art form than beautiful fabrics alone.
Here are 7 of the top reasons that moms are wearing their babies, from supermodels to the mom-next-door... because the practice of babywearing is all-inclusive...
- Babies that are worn are happier. Evidence suggests that carrying our babies is directly correlated to decreased crying and fussing.
"We are translating age-old traditions into a fashion and lifestyle statement...We believe that mothers can feel more confident if they are carrying their babies close and safe in a loving way and remain stylish while doing so."
(Anna van den Bogert, via Artipoppe)
My due date is fast approaching and with it, comes a million uncertainties. Yet one thing is clear in my mind. I will wear my son. I will wrap him in cloth and trust in this age-old practice that is now being supported by science, common sense and fashion. And while I may not be "Vogue-ready," I'll honor every beautiful extra inch and glistening tiger stripe as I carefully position my newborn against my body. Because whether they are worn during muddy hikes or through glamorous photo shoots, our babies only care about one thing: being close to mama.
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This post originally appeared on Mama Bean Parenting.