I've always known it, but today as I practice different carries and demonstrating baby carriers in preparation for consultations this week, I see so clearly how each type has it's place. Some may get more airtime than others, but then that one on the back of the shelf can really come into it's own when the situation calls. Each sling has it's moment to shine, and that's why I have so many types and brands of carrier. I keep up to date with trends and draw on my community for their wealth of experience when I encounter scenarios that require some out of the box thinking and tinkering.
I might get out a stretchy wrap for a newborn, a ring sling for hip carries or breastfeeding in, a mei tai if parents are looking to share a sling that fits them both well, or a buckle carrier for something quick, but these are just the initial suggestions that may fulfill the simplest requirements for most average parents.
There is no typical parent though, and each I meet teaches me something new to add to my bank of experience.
We are however all individual, with unique circumstances, preconceptions, preferences, different shaped and sized bodies, and that's before considering the parent's health, strengths, limitations, pre-existing conditions, and any health considerations in the baby.
Amidst this tangle of wraps and straps it is my role to tease out what a parent really wants from a sling, what will best meet their most immediate needs, and as their baby grows into a toddler. We navigate the possibilities without overwhelming ourselves with everything. On all scales of ease, quickness, poppability, longer term comfort, adaptability and portability (and so on!) we weigh up what is top of the agenda.
This role as baby carrying consultant is rewarding, exciting and my thirst for coming up with solutions for parents is insatiable. When we get it right it makes for delighted parents who can get on with their lives and taking care of their baby and keeping them happy too.
How did you figure out which sling was the one out of all the slings?
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