June 29, 2009,
M.B. asks from Ballwin, MO on May 02, 2009
Wearing Your Baby??
OK I need opinions. Earlier in the week I posted something about teething and my son being very crabby due to teething. I took him to the doctor last week to make sure he didnt have an ear infection, he didnt. But Im going to take him back Monday to make sure again. This child is only happy if Im holding him or hes crawling around getting into trouble. Hes doing the army crawl so hes not too fast. So I can put him down and have about 30 seconds to do something before he gets into something hes not supposed to. I will put of huge pile of toys around him and he will completely bypass all of his toys to get to the fireplace, electrical outlets (I plugged them already), vents, cords/wires, he tries to eat lint, bangs his head on the window sills, you name it, this kid loves trouble!!! He doesnt like his walker, playpen, he can get out of his bouncer chair. He flipped that over last week. So when I try to get anything done I can put him in the highchair for a couple minutes until hes over that, or I can put him in a baby carrier thing and he happy as pie!! But I have reservations about this baby carrier. Besides the fact that hes working on 19 lbs, is he going to require me to always carry him around or will this pass?? What are your opinions about it? Is it going to make him weird and need me ALL the time. Dont get me wrong, I love holding him, playing with, reading to him, all that stuff, but all day long? I cant get anything done. My husband is out of town and my son screamed the entire time I tried to make my daughter dinner last night. And me taking a shower is miserable because he cries most of the time. I dont want him crying all the time, but I cant be with him all the time. Will this pass? Is it weird carrying your baby around in a baby carrier like Im pregnant with I 20 lb baby! Help I need advice!
So What Happened?™
Alright Ladies, I want to thank you all very much for your support and advice. I was planning on taking my son back to the doctor this weekend to make sure he was still ok. Everything was well until about Saturday night, he started fussing and screaming again. So I told myself, after quite a few of my family members (including my husband) told me to quit freaking out about him, I was taking him back to the doctor anyways no matter what anyone says. Our co-pay is $5, the office is like 30 seconds away, and if nothings wrong I will just get my daughter fitted for a bike helmet (they do that at our ped's office), so either way it wouldnt be a wasted trip. Three words.....DOUBLE EAR INFECTION!!! Yeah what if I would have listened to everyone that told me to stop freaking out?!?! SO lesson learned here Moms, go with your gut and dont let people tell you otherwise. And the baby carrier? I will be carrying him around in it, just for fun because I feel so stinking bad for him!!! Thanks again ladies!!
L.G. answers from Kansas City on May 03, 2009
M. I wore my son until he was almost 18 months. Does that mean he never got down? NO. Wearing your baby creates a very strong bond between mommy & baby. Whenever he was fussy I would put my son in my sling and he calmed right down. It can be a little awkward trying to do housework while wearing a larger baby, but it is possible. My son is now a happy healthy little boy who happily plays by himself when mommy needs to work. I used a Maya wrap (www.mayawrap.com) and loved it!
I actually put him in it again when he was around 2 1/2 (he had an ear infection at the time and was cranky). He immediately calmed down. (Would I have walked around with him in it? Maybe.)
Bottom line, this is such a short time that you have to enjoy them when they are this small - I say wear your baby when you can and sit with them when you can't. You are helping to build a foundation of love and security in another human being - it's only for a short time that you will be able to carry him. It will only be too soon when he doesn't want Mommy to hold him anymore! Take advantage of the time you have!!
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L.O. answers from Topeka on May 03, 2009
Not weird at all! I have worn my son since he was a newborn, and he is almost one year and still loves it. He is over 21 lbs., too. Babywearing makes for a more confident & connected child, and yes, they will outgrow it. My advice is to enjoy wearing him while he wants to be worn. (;
A couple of good resources:
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A.H. answers from St. Joseph on May 03, 2009
Baby-wearing is great! You can make your own sling or wrap pretty easily if you don't have a carrier that is comfortable enough for long periods (www.wearyourbaby.com). It's especially nice if you're breastfeeding. I use mine pretty often. It won't make him more clingy or dependent--often, it's quite the opposite! LOTS of cultures do it at least until the child can walk (often longer).
Also, you might find that if you are baby-wearing most of the time, your son may not "complain" as much when you need to put him in the playpen or on the floor for short periods (I would only use the playpen when I cannot supervise the child, such as when I'm in the shower).
You can even wear your baby in the shower if you have the right fabric, but I wouldn't recommend it, lol. However, do NOT wear your baby, even on your back, while you cook with any heat source; it's too dangerous.
Speaking of cooking, I love using my slow-cooker; it makes preparing dinner much easier with little ones! I don't have to put my son down to make dinner, because it's been cooking since his morning nap!
Anyway, from your post, it sounds like you've only done the *bare minimum* of baby-proofing (but maybe I'm wrong). You really need to get that done to make the environment safe for your son to live in--it's his home, too! It's not going to get any easier when he starts crawling, walking... and climbing, lol! (My 4-year-old was/is a little monkey!)
He won't die if he eats a bit of lint or dust, so let him explore. I'd be more worried if he NEVER got dirty (does he get playtime outside in the grass?). He's probably going to bump his head a LOT in the next few months while learning to crawl and walk, too. I think as moms, we sometimes have to learn what we should worry about--and what NOT to. ;-)
HTH! Good luck!
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C.A. answers from St. Louis on May 03, 2009
Relax, this is common, very much so. He has reached an age that involves curiosity, and exploration, it also is an age of needing mom close by. So here is my suggestions based on my own experience with this same type of thing.
First of all a few dust bunnies never hurt any one. I understand being a professional day care worker means keeping a house spotless, but most of us have our lent and dust bunnies and we know where the are. So dont stress over it. My daughter once found a dead rolly polly bug near the fire place and ate it. As gross as that sounds, she is alive and well today.
I think the question is more about what you want to do. Some parents want to carry the baby all day, other parents dont. Either way the children grow up to be perfectly normal people. Because you have a lot of advice on carrying the baby, I will concentrate on the other side of things.
He is interested in learning about his environment and those things like the vents and the cabinets look interesting to him. I had one in particular who very rarely chose a toy over something that I would call real life. He was drawn to exploring his environment and toys were not what he wanted.
I went through my kitchen cabinets and began to pull out things that I knew he could explore without getting hurt. When I needed some time I would distribute them all over the room. Bowls, plastic cups, wooden spoons, pots and pans, lids, spoons, and anything else I could think of. One of his favorites was a tupper ware pitcher with a lid. I would place them far enough away from each other that he had to crawl from one to another in order to explore them. This gave him exercise, wore him out, and kept him happy.
When I knew I was going to be extremly busy and he needed to be a little safer for a few minutes, I placed a few of these things in his play pen with him. He was not one for the play pen either, but if I gave him things that he really wanted to explore he was happy with it. I would hand him the items and then put him the play pen while they were in his hands. He seemed to do better if he was holding them when I put him in.
I got very good a carrying a baby gate from room to room with me. If I was working in a room he went with me and I would put him in the floor with these "new toys". If I was in the kitchen the toys seemed endless. If it was a bedroom he was given things that I had back there and knew would not hurt him. When I folded laudry I let him have a a piece or two to roll around with in the floor.
We developed our own little system and he seemed to adjust well to it. He was definitely an explorer and it sounds like you have one as well. My son had to learn the word NO at an early age. I would grab his hand hold it and say NO whne he reached for something that would harm him. I would then pick him up and move him to something that he could explore. I had a few drawers down low that I cleaned every thing out of and he played with opening and closing them. In time he learned he could put things in them, and close them up.
Some kids are natural explorers and it can take some time to find a way to encourage it while keeping them safe and maintaining your sanity. Use the word NO, he may not like it but it can be a literal life saver. Allow him to explore his world in place of the toys, and relax about the lent. he is just exploring with his mouth. I have dug so many things out of mouths it isnt funny. As long as the hosue is clean and safe he will be fine.
The shower is the one thing that I can say I never figured out. I just got in the habit of putting him in his play pen just outside of the bathroom. I would tell him each time that I was going to take a shower. At first he cried every time. Eventually he seemed to get into the routine and know that every day MOM did this thing. He could cry or play the choice was his.
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B.J. answers from Kansas City on May 03, 2009
I don't think wearing him will make him weird or clingy (in the long run). It may just calm him down for now. My son was very fussy and we went through the same thing. He is now 8, and I would love to have some of that cuddle time back! Do it as much as you are comfortable with.
Otherwise put him in his playpen/crib while you take a shower/go to the bathroom/do what you need to do, and he will be okay.
As usual, go with your gut, you will almost always be right!
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R.M. answers from Topeka on May 03, 2009
M....my oldest daughter just had our first grandchild 17 months ago and she "wore him" from day one. I too was afraid that he would never be willing to be left alone, but now he is just a happy, carefree, into exploring everything 17 month old little jewel!!! When they are newborns I think they really do thrive on the closeness and security that they experience from being "worn". I would suggest that you look into several all the different types of things you can buy before you buy anything to wear him. I know that my daughter liked the type that you carry them on one side, when Kieran was younger but now that he is over 25 lbs ( she still uses them for shopping trips etc) she prefers the type that distributes the weight on both shoulders, and she is carrying him either in front or in back. I would suggest looking at Craiglist or at ads in your local newspaper to see if you can purchase a used one, to make sure it is what you and your little one both want.
I would also give some thought to maybe just "showing him who is boss"....it isn't necessary for him to be happy and smiling all the time...if you need him to be in the playpen...put him in the playpen!!! If he fusses...that's ok..he will survive...believe me!! Put a few toys in there with him...let him be where he can see you...and just go on about your business. He has learned that if he fusses you will rescue him...he is just doing what works!!! Is you husband out of town for work a lot?? If so...find a babysitter...get out and do something for YOU...it will give you an entirely new perspective on things!!
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T.H. answers from Kansas City on May 03, 2009
Oh, M., I had to laugh at your post...it was funny! I think like you sometimes and it was nice to know I'm not to the only one who worries over some of this stuff! I can't say I really have much advice in this area, but I am pregnant with my second and have considered wearing that baby too b/c I am constantly moving and chasing my older child, so I was interested in your responses. But, I do have to say, do whatever works for you!!! If it makes you both feel better to wear him, then do it! I'm sure he'll grow up perfectly fine and well adjusted, as the others have said. If you can get over the crying and can leave him be while you're showering, cooking, etc. I think that would be perfectly fine too. One thing I had to learn quickly about motherhood was do whatever works for you and your baby and go from there! Lastly...just wanted to put in my props for the Maya wrap. I used mine (very infrequently, but I used it) with my first and I liked it. As I said, I'm sure I'll have to figure it out completely when number 2 comes along! Good luck!
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S.G. answers from Kansas City on May 03, 2009
I would put him in a playpen or whatever you need to keep him safe and out of things so that you get some things done. Put some of his toys with him. It will be okay if he cries. If you can see that he is not hurt then he is just doing it as he is now used to crying and you holding him. How does your daughter get any you time? He will get over this, you just need to help him, by making him wait for you. A little crying never hurt a baby.
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