A couple months ago following the tragedy of the Japanese tsunami, we discussed emergency babywearing in a true emergency situation: natural disaster, fire, injury. In this post we follow up with emergency babywearing in a non-emergency situation. These are those occasions where your babywearing skills come in handy even though it isn't a true emergency. Babywearing is a skill, not a carrier. Once you have the skill, almost anything can carry your baby. And sometimes those baby carriers can stand in for other things needed in your non-emergency.
You've gone to the library with your kids. You thought both were ready to look at books peacefully, so you didn't bring in a carrier, but your toddler begins grabbing books from the shelves and you need to get her away from them. Your lovely scarf can come to the rescue:
Your family has headed to the beach. You only had a short walk, a few blocks at most from the house/hotel/car, and you knew your preschooler would have no trouble with the walk. But at the end of a long day of beach fun, your preschooler is wiped out and doesn't have enough juice to make it home. What now? You still have to carry the beach stuff back, so you can't carry them in arms. Your towel to the rescue!
Sometimes you have an emergency of an entirely different sort. We've all had the experience when a baby has a diaper leak, or pours out a cup of juice, but when it occurs when you are wearing them, you get wet too. Most moms carry extra clothes for baby, but what about you? Do you get to stay icky and wet? Now, how to get home? A double hammock carry with your wrap will provide the coverage of your top without having to put the dirty shirt back on. Once you've made it home, or at least to the relative safety of the car, you can usually find a longer term solution. Perhaps you won't be the height of fashion, but you will be dry and covered.
It seems whenever I'm around my kids, they find ways to make me a mess. During my older daughter's swim class a few weeks ago, my toddler was determined to get in the pool. I spent the class chasing her and trying to keep her from falling in. I was wearing a long skirt, and squatting by the pool edge I got the skirt all wet. I had a long drive ahead of me, and wearing a wet skirt to drive didn't sound comfortable at all. A short wrap to the rescue. A wrap can stand in for a skirt in many situations.
Finally, sometimes you brought a carrier, you remembered extra clothes (or managed to stay clean), you remembered to pack sandwiches, snacks and drinks, what you forgot was a place to PUT the lunch down. That carrier can come in handy here as a table cloth or picnic blanket:
So remember that knowing how to babywear is about more than knowing how to use a carrier in its intended fashion correctly. It's using a skill and fabric devices to make your life better.