I noticed on our spreadsheet that we’ve reached 100 combined hours of 1:1 consultations since East Surrey Slings began and it got me to thinking about the journey that each of those consultations has taken us on.
Being focused on one dyad of parent or baby, (or triad if we are doing a couples consult) is a very intensive problem solving session for us. We have never fitted a sling to you or your baby at that point before. We quickly have to assess your body shape, posture, any medical issues as well as any behavioural or medical issues for the child being carried; and the impact this can have on your carrying. The stage of development your child is in, which is not always based on their age – is unique for each child; it can hugely affect which sling will work best for you.
A young baby changes and grows so quickly, so we work with you to find options that fit your family’s personal needs, as well as recognising that a mother’s post-birth body changes quickly too and not always in ways that you yourself can predict. These aspects are all considered during a consultation, as well as your preferences.
We tailor our 90 minute consultations to whatever you want, and our shorter skills sessions have more direction but are led by your needs too. If you want to feel confident using a sling you have got but you don’t know where to start, we can help with that and building you up so you are confident to do it yourself at home. If you have enjoyed carrying your baby but are finding it uncomfortable, we can get you fitted with something that will let you continue to enjoy your carrying journey. If you want to try on every sling that we have that is age appropriate for your baby, that is also possible (we may ask why and try to filter it down – we are not a small library and there are only 90 minutes!).
We absolutely love helping parents or carers carry their children. It is what we are passionate about and why we set up East Surrey Slings. We both try our hardest to put our clients at ease, as being comfortable provides the best learning environment, and it is enjoyable for all of us to have a safe space to get to know one another. No two consultations have ever been the same, and it gives us the opportunity to use our large problem-solving tool box. This tool box has been honed and added to over our time as East Surrey Slings and previously as NCT sling library volunteers. And the basis of our tool box is our professional training which (to date) is over 80 hours each of formal learning through consultancy courses and continuing professional development. And both of us will expand our knowledge with consultancy courses from other babywearing schools. Nearly 2 years of weekly library sessions has let us build up a diverse skill set and be able to make experience-based decisions as to what will suit a carrying family in a short space of time. We can’t always help a family in a library session due to more complex needs or safety aspects (we don’t teach back carries in public sessions for example) but we will always offer a suitable alternative or find space for a private consultation.
But sometimes it is lovely to have that time and space to really help a family carry, and we both feel very privileged to have spent 100 hours in the company of our amazing consultees and their children. Each and every one of you have helped us become better consultants and help more families. Thank you.
And as a special thank you to all our consultation clients who see us in our birthday month of November, we will add an additional 2 week’s sling hire, which can be used by you or passed on to a friend. Just drop us an email on email@example.com or book a consultation.