I’ve been in and out of the wrapping community for the past 9 months or so now because our wrapping opportunities were diminishing. My youngest (now 2.5) is fairly independant and far too busy playing with his brother and getting into trouble to want to be snuggled up on Mommy for any length of time. But honestly? I haven’t been fighting him too hard because pregnancy leaves me feeling pretty tired…
Oh, didn’t I say? 😉 Well, you read that right: I’ve been not-so-patiently awaiting the arrival of baby #3!!!
Amazing what pregnancy hormones and emotions do to you, isn’t it? First trimester left me uninterested and sometimes straight up nauseated by wearing 30lbs of kid and by my stash of wraps and baby carriers. Second trimester came with this intense urge to sell everything and get down to a more minimalist “forever” stash… something I never thought I’d do.
Thankfully, third trimester has been easier on my babywearing hormones (yes, they’re a seperate thing altogether. Trust me.) but has also been much more straining for my body.
So the one thing that has renewed my textile-loving heart has been something that also has made this crazy long pregnancy more bearable — and dare I say enjoyable? — BELLY WRAPPING.
Wanna know more?
Belly wrapping has been around and practiced for centuries. But honestly, I don’t think its talked about nearly as much as it should be in our mommy circles. I mean, really. Just take into account the fact that we women gain anywhere from 15-40 pounds (or lucky women like me who watch what they eat and STILL somehow gain over 60lbs every time. Because my body likes to turn me into a bloated whale while pregnant), and almost all of that weight is in our belly and boobs, putting strain on our backs and hips! Then we’re still expected to take care of our other littles, the household chores, lift heavy things and bend over nearly constantly. All the while we’re making a human from scratch. No wonder we are uncomfortable, you know?
Belly wrapping is such a simple tool, but is so useful in aiding common pregnancy discomfort — and also post partum healing!
It is most often suggested in supporting the weight of your growing stomach. But it also helps in a number of other areas, too: improving your posture, lessening round ligament pain, and helping ease hip/pelvic pain, lower back and some pubic bone pain.
“I want to try this! But I have no woven wraps. Can I still do it?”
YES. Woven wraps are NOT a necessity for belly wrapping. Any long piece of fabric will do. Gauze, linen or osnaburg fabric (which are often the most common “DIY” babywearing starter wraps, also!) work perfectly. As do any form of Ringsling or stretchy wrap. In fact many people have said that their Moby wrap, Boba wrap, Sleepy wrap, or Wrapsody stretch hybrid wrap were the most comfortable belly wrap because of how easy it was to adjust it for going potty. 😉
I have been wrapping my belly since about 28 weeks, but it has become part of daily necessity in these later days. I am currently 40 weeks and 4 days along. I’m huge. The relief is immense and nearly immediate. I had to mess around with different techniques to find out what was most comfortable for me. And I also had to change it up throughout the different pregnancy “seasons” depending on what was bothering me at that time. There is a slight learning curve. It might not feel amazing or perfect the first couple of times you try it. Don’t be discouraged. It’s worth working at! Especially toward the end.
Here is a YouTube playlist of all of the pregnancy belly wrapping videos that I could find available on YouTube: Belly Wrapping Tutorials
I will close with sharing that there are also many postpartum belly binding techniques for aiding in healing after baby comes. Googling “Post partum belly binding” will provide lots of insight to the history, background, uses and advantages of belly binding. DEFINITELY worth looking into!
But this post was mainly to highlight wrapping during pregnancy and provide you with links to start practicing!
Happy Babywearing AND Belly Wrapping!