I was going to make a video of a back carry, but Cassidy wanted to nurse and would not be put off. So there I was standing on the beach nursing with him in my arms, holding a wrap. What could I do? I wrapped him up while he nursed! I thought I was improvising, but watching the video, I realize now that I ended up tying a hip cross carry with my (almost) ten month old in a cradle position.
Tying a wrap around a baby who is already nursing is often the easiest way to learn to nurse in a wrap, because instead of having a hungry baby becoming frantic and making you frantic while trying to learn a new skill, your baby is happily nursing from the beginning, buying you contented time to figure it out!
I would, however, start in a seated position, and not standing in the middle of a beach! I made a video of this with Annabelle when she was very young, in our living room–on the very couch that she was born on, in fact! In this video I had already pretied a front cross carry. I sit down and insert her into it, latch her on, and then get everything tightened up so that it becomes truly hands-free.
Usually while wrapping up my nursing baby, he gets jostled off the breast at some point, and I just stop to help him get latched on gain, then continue.
Patience is important as staying calm will get you a lot farther faster than anything else! If you work at it for a few minutes and it almost works, then baby wants to get down, or needs to burp, or even just because you’ve had enough and don’t want to get frustrated, go ahead and stop. Work on it more the next time. You’ve made progress–take a win!
A note on nursing in the cradle position: Make sure you can see your baby’s face, and that your baby’s nostrils are clear and have access to plenty of fresh air.
You also need to be aware of your baby’s airway which is especially delicate in very young infants. In order to keep the airway clear, be sure that your baby’s neck is not bent forward bringing your baby’s chin to his or her chest as that can fold the tube closed that your baby needs for air. You should be able to fit two adult fingers between chin and chest at any time.