...like they do on the Discovery Channel!

I have been at a family expo/trade show for the past few days talking about, teaching and demonstrating all things babywearing.

As you know, I am a HUGE babywearing advocate and also a babywearing educator. I feel it is not only my job, but my duty as an informed parent and a babywearing professional to introduce, teach and otherwise promote babywearing to as many new, and not so new parents as possible.

I take my job quite seriously and I have been known on more than one occasion to chase down babywearing mom's and offer my services to do a quick correction for babywearing booboos. For the most part, my "interventions" are welcomed and I am thanked afterwards for my help in making their babywearing more comfortable or showing them the proper way to do something.

I never judge. I simply offer my advice and expertise.

Today I offered advice to a mom wearing a brand new Baby Bjorn carrier and a 22 pound toddler in a forward-facing carry. The kid was obviously (at least to me) in some distress. He was kicking his legs, flailing his arms and rubbing his eyes, all signs of an over-stimulated and over-tired baby. When I asked mom if she was comfortable in her carrier, she said she loves it. I asked her how long she usually wears him for and she told me that she can wear him for up to 2 hours in it! (I had a hard time believing her since the "lumbar" support on her carrier was up by her shoulder blades.) We talked about her pelvic floor health and also about his hip and spine development and still she insisted that they were fine and not interested in having him so "constricted" in a different kind of carrier.

I took the hint and let it go. You win some and you lose some.

As I headed back to my booth and relayed the incident to my babywearing booth-mates, the lovely Shanon Mozak of Metamorphosis (wrap carrier converter and dye-er extraordinaire) said to us,

"Look to the apes for how to wear your babies."

It was at once the most hilarious and most profound thing I had heard all day!

And she is not wrong.

According to an article published in Science Daily in December 2007,

...for safety, all nonhuman primates carry their young clinging to their fur from birth, and species survival depends on it. The carrying pattern changes as the infant grows. Newborns are carried clinging to their mother’s stomach, often with additional support. Months later, infants are carried over the adult body usually on the mother’s back, and this carrying pattern lasts for years in apes.

Sound familiar?

Look familiar?

Image credit: iStockPhoto/Graeme Purdy

And it is not only apes. Look at some the other animals that "carry" their babies.

So you see, it's not just me. It is the way Mother Nature intended.

Happy Babywearing Everyone!!