There are so many reasons to count our lucky stars that we are a parent in the here and now. So much research has been done into parenting and how our baby develops. And we have all this knowledge at our fingertips to help us be the best parents that we can be. ‘Baby wearing’ is a huge part of this new understanding; keeping our little ones close so that they can keep in tune with our heart beat, easing the stress and shock of being born out into the big wide world and encouraging the bond between both parents and baby. And many more reasons besides, see my blog on Kangaroo Care for more on this.
Morecambe Bay Slings is our local advocate for baby wearing. They hold weekly groups to support parents in both Lancaster and Morecambe. I recently went to visit one of their friendly sessions and find out a little bit more of what they offer our community. The groups are run by Tamsin Coxhill, Abi Doughty and Anthea Manderson, and their enthusiastic collective of volunteers. The three have received training with Slingababy and as well as offering peer support, and practical sling tutorials, they also boast a very well stocked library of slings for parents to hire.
Many Types of Slings
As I quickly learnt there are many types of slings and not one style will suit everyone. While you might start out with one sling, as baby grows, you may find a different style then becomes more comfortable for you and your baby. This is why Morecambe Bay Slings recommend that you borrow rather than buy. As Abi said “Just because a sling has a big price tag or a designer name, it doesn’t mean it’s going to fit right.”
Borrow rather than Buy
The length of time you can borrow a sling for is very flexible. Some slings are out on loan for just one month, and others have been out for a year. To get you started, they offer a free trial service. Providing new parents with a stretchy wrap that is free to trail with their newborn for four weeks.
While I was visiting two new mothers were having a tutorial on how to use a stretchy wrap, while their babies slept in their prams, volunteer Lucy was leading them through the tying steps with dolls as models. Sometimes expectant mothers even visit before baby has arrived to find out what it is all about.
“I just love the aha moment” says Tamsin “It’s like they emerge from behind a cloud when they realise how much the sling is going to free them up and keep their baby happy. Babies want to be carried!” Tamsin loves knowing that she is really helping parents at a time that can be quite difficult. There is no judgement at the group, just lots of support and a chance to make new friends.
Morecambe Bay Slings Library
Follow the link to have a look through their extensive library. They have a broad range of styles that fit under the following subheadings.
Stretchy Wraps: One of the best options for newborns and why this is introduced to parents first.
Woven Wraps: These can be really pretty too!
Ring Slings: Worn like a sash so a little less bulky for tying, but weight distribution is one sided.
Tie on Carriers: This is a very flexible carrier that you can adjust the way you wear as baby grows.
Full Buckle Carriers: Much like frameless backpacks, these are also called soft structured carriers. Often better when baby is a little older.
The broad range of choices offered by Morecambe Bay Slings guarantees that there will be a sling their suitable for you. And if baby wearing can make your life a little easier and your baby more content, then why not give it a go!
They meet every Thursday at the Cornerstone Cafe in Lancaster from 11am till 1pm. Then every other Thursday at Kerry’s Coffee House in Morecambe. The group also meets every fourth Saturday. You can check out the full list of their planned meetings on their website.