“Why is your baby on a leash? They’re not a dog.”
“You must be a lazy parent—just hold your kid’s hand.”
These are the thoughts I used to think when I saw children wearing a harness.
Fast-forward to today: I am a SAHM of an 18 month old & a 7 month old and we struggle to get outdoors. We struggle because we live in the middle of a city with busy streets on all sides. We have no yard—only a tiny balcony of outdoor space. The park is several blocks away, on the other side of a bus & train station. DD, my 18 month old, is super curious and wants to explore the world around her, but she feels frustrated and limited when I force her to hold my hand.
In case you’ve never tried venturing out by yourself with two under two before, let me break it down for you: Carrying a 23 pound infant in a front carrier and a large diaper bag on your back while trying to keep hold of the tiny hand of your toddler who zips this way and that (all while cars & trucks speed past you on the road that’s three feet away) is like asking Santa Claus with his sack of toys to chase after and corral the Energizer Bunny.
Enter the baby harness: a way for moms (and dads) laden down with babies and baby gear to venture out safely & stress-free with their energetic and curious toddler, while still being able to stand up straight and walk at a reasonable pace.
Why not just go to the park and let your toddler run wild and free (and safe) there, you ask?
Have you ever gone down a two-story tube slide with your 1-year-old in your lap and your infant strapped to you in the Ergo? No? I have, and let me tell you: it’s no fun. For anyone involved.
(Side note: we do go to the park several days a week, but when you have two under two sometimes all you can manage for the day is a walk around the block.)
So, to my past self who used to judge moms with kids on a harness, I say: look at me now! Having a baby of your own to keep safe, to raise and to foster her spirit of curiosity and creativity changes everything.
What tips and tricks do you have for venturing out with your little ones?