Tell us a little about yourself and what you do!
I am 32 years old, married, and mother of 5 super great kids ranging in age from 10 to 1. My husband and I are foster parents and have a mix of bio, adopted, and foster children. I am also a lover of coffee, a fantastically horrific singer, and a babywearing educator! Most babywearing educators teach HOW to wear a baby. I teach the WHY. Specifically why foster and adoptive parents should wear their babies.
How did you discover your love for babywearing?
It all started with my very first foster baby. When she came to me at only 2 months old she was so scared and shut down. In Arizona, when a child comes into foster care a team is sent out to evaluate the child and decide if therapeutic or other services will be necessary. They were not in my house long before they knew she would need a lot of help! This sweet baby had an attachment disorder. It was recommended to me to look into attachment parenting methods while we wait for therapeutic services to start and I was discouraged to see that most of the main things listed, co-sleeping and breast feeding, I was not allowed to do. I could babywear though! I am not one to do things half way so I WORE that baby! All day, every day, and she made progress! So much progress that her therapist asked me to talk at a support group for mothers of children with attachment disorders and that is kind of how it all started. Babywearing saved my daughter. It took a little baby who was too scared to make eye contact or cry, and who couldn't bare to be touched, and turned her into a happy, whole child.
What is your best advice for new parents and baby wearers?
My best advice for new parents and babywearers is don't give up on it too soon. Many of the parents I help start off by saying they can't babywear because they tried it once and it hurt their back or their baby didn't like it. That probably just means you don't have the right carrier. Believe me I went through so many carriers my first year! That is actually how my lending library got started, so people could try the carriers BEFORE they spent money on one that wasn't going to meet their needs!
What is your favorite part of your work?
That's easy! My favorite part of my work is when a foster mom or dad calls me and says, "oh my gosh, I think its working!" The success stories, no matter how small, mean the most to me. At the end of the day it is telling me that babywearing brought comfort to a child who had already been through more than they should have had to.
Do you have a favorite story or memory of a time you were able to help a client?
My favorite story would be the time I taught this AMAZING adoptive mom about babywearing older kids and I lent her a toddler carrier to try. She sent me a text later that evening with a picture of her 6 year old looking so happy and calm and she said that the child had been having a super hard day and was having melt down after melt down and she finally put him in the carrier and the close, even pressure of the carrier and the stability of mom right there was able to help him find a way to calm down and she was amazed at how quickly it turned the day around for her child. She told me the next day that her and her husband were going to order one so that they could also continue to use babywearing as a therapy tool for their traumatized kids.
What is your favorite feature of the LILLEbaby carriers?
My favorite feature of a LILLEbaby.... that's hard because the carrier is so well thought out! For me personally, I love that it can hold new born to toddler in the same carrier without having to buy other inserts or parts! As a foster parent I may have a 5 week old one day and a two year old the next. Its great to have one carrier that can meet ALL my babywearing needs! I also love the neck support on the complete, none of the kids I have had like hoods but they still need support while sleeping and the neck support is perfect for that!
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