To many parents and families all over the world the term “Babywearing” does not exist or require a definition at all. The practice of carrying infants and children closely, constantly and meeting the child’s needs as they arise is simply called “Parenting”.
Here in Canada the majority of parents are living many generations removed from a time when the traditional wisdom of natural birth, breastfeeding, and nurturing young children was part of our collective consciousness and passed down to us from the generations before us. Our cultural history is marked with the scars of residential schools, medicalized birth, nurseries separating mothers from newborns, scopolamine stupors of mothers laboring in “twilight sleep”, the marketing of infant milk and feeding substitutes. These practices in the history of our parenting culture have left many parents feeling very removed from the wisdom of knowing innately and intuitively how to care for their children.
Over the past forty or fifty years many parents in our culture have started to open to the idea of natural and intuitive parenting. This movement has led to the emergence of growing interest in natural birth, breastfeeding and gentle attached parenting. Many parents have come to discover the value and ease of using a soft carrier, sling or wrap to carry their babies and young children.
“Every child is different, but his needs are universal. All he wants is the nurture of a mother – and given in sufficient quantity, at an early enough age, he will grow up with security, and with responsibility for himself.”
-Deborah Jackson, Three in a Bed