I remember when I had my first baby and I certainly thought I was cool. I was so in touch with what all the moms were doing. My mom thought she knew what was cool but no. She was wrong. She was outdated and her last baby was born in the 80s so she was obviously clueless. I knew what was up. I wasn't just using Johnson's Tear free baby shampoo. That's what 80s moms used. I had these super awesome disposable wash cloths. I think they were still Johnson's but that isn't the point. They were disposable wash cloths. My mom had probably never even heard of those before!
By the time my second baby was born I realized the horrible mistake I had made. No one in their right mind was using friggin Johnson's anything because it causes cancer. I may as well have been rubbing my baby down with arsenic. Why oh why hadn't I known about Burt's Bees??
Anyways, I like to consider myself at least a part-time baby wearer. I don't really wear my babes after a certain point, usually because they are big and I am pregnant and once they get the hang of walking I don't feel the need to have them attached to me. But early on, and the more kiddos I have, I like to wear them. It's convenient and simple.
When my third kiddo, Royal, was born, I got a Moby wrap for cheap and I couldn't believe how much I loved the thing. It snuggled my little newborn in there on my chest and it was super warm even though it was winter here in Alaska. Sometimes I would just put him in it because he was fussy and then I could get other stuff done while he slept on me.
When Royal got a little bigger, I completely skipped the regular outward-facing carry and started practicing a really neat back carry. It took a while to get it secure, but I felt confident in it. If the baby started to slip at all I could feel it and readjust. I was just walking around anyhow, not hiking up mountains or doing yoga. It seemed pretty fine and safe to me.
The only part I didn't like as much was how much fabric you ended up with. It was a lot to wrap around your body and so it was kind of annoying in a hurry. Other than that though, I really loved it.
Fast-forward a little ways and guess what? You are strictly forbidden from back-carries with the Moby wrap. Apparently, according to the baby-wearing experts, putting a baby in a Moby wrap on your back has been known to cause such catastrophes as babies exploding. You cannot wear a baby on your back in a Moby.
To add insult to injury, I soon learned that everyone hates the Moby wrap. I thought it was the best invention ever, but here I was wrong. No one *wants* to use a Moby wrap. They are too stretchy and they are dangerous and uncomfortable. Who knew? I started looking into other options. There were wraps similar to the Moby called K'tan that were slightly easier to put on, but they still presented the same issues of being too stretchy. I liked the look of the Mei-tei carriers, but they were super spendy. I eventually made my own and I liked it okay, but it could never feel quite as secure as the snugly, stretchy Moby wrap and all it's lovey goodness.
I started to notice that the trend was woven wraps. They cost an arm, a leg, and the blood of your firstborn. I really can't fathom how they could possibly feel secure and tight when the fabric doesn't stretch but then again I've never tried one.
One of my co-ops on facebook had a buy for Ergo baby carriers. They were about $30 and they had some really cute ones. It seemed like a good price to try out a different method for baby-wearing. Plus, Ergo was "the" baby carrier. People are spending hundreds of dollars on different custom varieties of this Ergo thing so I knew I was missing out on something.
I was pregnant with Jericho when I got my Ergo and just looking at it made me insanely happy. I could tell it was well built and sturdy and would be easy to get on and off - much more so than my Moby. The first time I put him in it my heart swelled. I needed some assistance because to be completely honest I could not figure out how to get the buckle on the back done when the baby was in front of me. I wore him in the Ergo maybe three times and was never fully able to get it on AND off without assistance.
So now let's talk about today. Jericho just turned four months old and I needed to walk down to the police station to get my van. I had no adult helpers and I had four other kiddos walking. I excitedly reached for the Ergo, knowing that now, I could put Jericho facing outward. I learned my lesson the first few times and only unbuckled the waist buckle. I tucked Babycakes in there and started to buckle it up when I realized that his legs would not spread properly to hang out while forward facing. Hm. Apparently I'm dumb. So I tried to tuck his feet in. That also didn't work.
I started to get really annoyed because I had somewhere to be and I thought I could just throw this thing on and go. How the heck do you put a baby with short legs spread like that? He was way too big to carry all squished up like a newborn, but he couldn't spread his legs far enough to comfortably face out. In a fit of frustration I tried to unbuckle and pull it off. Of COURSE I couldn't get the darn thing off without prying my poor babe face first out onto the bed. Stupid buckles that I can't reach!!
I tried to switch to a back carry. At least then I could easily access the buckles and not need help. I buckled it on my waist while it sat on the bed with the baby in it, then I grabbed the shoulder straps and pulled him right up onto me. Phew! Not too hard. Then I glanced in the mirror and his skewed legs were making me wince. They didn't fit inside the carrier and they sure didn't fit outside the carrier. In a fit of rage I disassembled the tiny bit of progress I had made.
OH MY GOSH, WHERE IS MY MOBY WRAP???
I found it stored neatly beside my dresser and whipped that baby on so fast. Jericho was literally giggling as I stuffed him into it, outward facing for the first time ever (he's just a happy kid....).
I just can't do it. I can't do the Ergo. I wanted to like it. No, I wanted to LOVE it. But I can't. My moby wrap just gets me. And I still call myself a babywearer. I'm sorry. I promise I tried. I will hold on to the Ergo until short-fat legged babies become longer legged babies that can fit more easily but in the meantime I'm just sticking with the Moby.
Consider this my formal apology to the die-hard babywearing community.
I also still use the disposable washcloths.