Christina's Baby Journey
(WEAR) - Mothers have been baby wearing all over the globe since time began, but in the United States, the trend has just caught on over the last decade. The movement has largely been led by moms who take a natural and organic approach to child raising. Pensacola mom Jennifer Tuten says when she was pregnant with her first child, she didn't see herself as a "baby wearing" mother. "I wasn't really open to it at first. I kinda thought I would be able to put the baby down and walk away. That's not the baby that I had," she explained. In fact, her first born, William, just wanted to be held. "When my son was little, anytime I'd put him down, he would cry," she said.
Tuten joined the local non-profit volunteer group, "Babywearing Pensacola." The group of moms formally meet twice a month, in addition to planning regular park outings and playdates. The group has a very strong Facebook following and about sixty mothers show up at each event to socialize and learn from each other on all kinds of topics. "A lot of moms who baby wear are very similar. A lot of them like to cloth diaper and breast feed, so you're able to connect on that level," Tuten expanded.
Babywearing Pensacola welcomes new and pregnant moms like our Christina. They teach and demonstrate how to safely babywear with the many different kinds of wraps and carriers. There are different styles and kinds of materials. Tuten says a strong woven cloth is key for safely and comfort. Babies are worn three different ways; front, back or on the side. Some mothers make their wraps for a few dollars, others buy ones that can cost hundreds. Jennifer says baby wearing frees a mothers' hands, soothes a fussy baby, helps babies who have reflux or colic and promotes bonding. "It's super quick and easy to breast feed while you're wearing your baby. You can walk around and do it."
Christina says that since she and Milan have been expecting, she's noticed the trend, a lot. "I was intimidated by the wraps and stuff. Whatever, so you go, how the heck do I do that?" Tuten spent a lot of time with Christina showing her how to wrap up five month old Madison, Tuten's baby daughter. Tuten says certain techniques can be tricky at first, but with practice, can be done quickly and singlehandedly. Christina enjoyed the demonstration and baby wearing little Madison. She said she's certainly more open minded about the concept. "It's really neat. They said they have pregnant moms go quite often where they show them all this stuff, so I felt like, this is something I could do."