When we started babywearing at 4 months, I never realised how much of a positive impact it would have on my parenting as well as creating beautiful moments between my girl and I. As our babywearing journey comes to an end, there is actually a lot of sadness on both our parts. The last few times that I have worn my daughter, she has said it is her favourite part of the day and I have really cherished those babywearing cuddles. I honestly did not expect to feel so sad!
There can be lots of reasons for a babywearing journey to come to an end and for me it was because baby #2 is officially baking! Between the intense nausea and the inability to have anything around my tummy combined with the fact that Emily is almost 4 and over 16kg meant that we started reducing our babywearing and now haven’t worn in over a month. It definitely was difficult at the start as Kangatraining was always ‘our thing’ and I had to slowly reduce her time being worn as there was lots of tears and cold turkey was not an option. Thankfully a returning mum brought her two year old and now they are best friends so Emily doesn’t even ask to hop in the carrier!
As she got older, babywearing was a way to connect, to provide support to her when she got tired/cranky/overwhelmed and for us to experience life and events together. I really loved hearing her chatter away on my back about what we were doing and what she was seeing. There was nothing sweeter than when her little arms would come around and she would cuddle me and tell me that she loved me! Makes me tear up just thinking about it (darn pregnancy hormones).
With this parenting tool gone, we have had to find different ways to connect to help replace babywearing. Now in Kangatraining, we go early and have a little play so we have something special and I make sure that she still gets lots of affection and cuddles throughout the day. A friend talked about never letting go in a hug first and I loved this so have been consciously trying to let Emily decide when the hug ends (despite my long list of to dos or just general pregnancy twinges). I think she has noticed as just today she told me ‘I’m not finished with this hug yet mummy’ which was too cute!
While there was some mama guilt about the end as Emily would have been worn for much longer; Emily is just as excited about the new baby as we are! I am excited about wearing a new squishy baby and have started getting special carriers just for the baby and Emily has enjoyed helping me pick them out. Today she even told me that I would be wearing the new baby in Kangatraining and she doesn’t want to hop in the carrier as she is ‘now the big sister and kanga is for all of us’. While we both might be sad, we will always have these memories and at least we are looking towards the future and the start of a new babywearing journey!
Certified Babywearing Consultant