Often times when I go out with the girls, I’ll wear the oldest while putting the smaller one in the cart. This always results in stares and commentary about how big E is. To the average bystander, it makes more sense to carry the lesser load. What they don’t realize is how amazing of an escape artist E is.
Stores and crowds are overwhelming and tend to send E into hyperdrive. She slithers out of the belt and prepares to jump out of the seat. If she sits in the basket, E either cart surfs or lifts the back and climbs in and out. Basically it’s misery.
On the outings where I put E up in a carrier, she calms. Trips are enjoyable and exploratory. It allows E to take in the world around her with a sense of safety and comfort. Carriers also apply pressure around E, satisfying her sensory need for compression when overwhelmed. This is especially true in crowded spaces, like fairs, grocery stores, or babywearing meetings.
Basically, wearing the preschooler is exactly what we both need, even if it looks backwards. It’s my best tool in my belt for succeeding at parenting. I can’t imagine life without it.