Volunteer Spotlight – Ryann Gerwig

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In order to better get to know the volunteer educators for BWI of Southern Maryland, we will be featuring an interview with a different volunteer every week.

This week’s volunteer spotlight is Ryann Gerwig!

Name: Ryann Gerwig
Children: Riley 2, Ashton 6 mos
Volunteer Type: VBE (Volunteer Babywearing Educator)
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WI Meetings attended: Prince Frederick


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How did you discover babywearing?
My mom wore my sis and I in a snuggli 30+ years ago buuuuuut I don’t remember than a bunch so I consider my discovery happened in the walmart parking lot.  It was when having kids was still in the “some day” category and I saw a new mom wearing her baby in a stretchy wrap.  I stopped her to ask what kind it was because I KNEW I HAD to carry my future babies like that.What prompted you to try babywearing?
I was a high needs baby that  would never be put down and figured pay back was coming my way and why wouldn’t you want to snuggle your baby all the time?

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What is your favorite type of carrier (wraps/ ring slings/ SSCs/ MTs, etc.) and why?
I would say meh dais…right now. I go back and forth between that and wraps. I love meh dais because they are quick, easy and secure even with a leg straightener and seat popper.  I have bad shoulders, so back wrapping when I’m having a bad shoulder day isn’t the easiest but meh dais are still doable.

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What is your favorite carrier you have owned?
Oh this is a tough one.  I’d have to go with my Didymos Jade triblend wrap.  It’s super soft and comfy for the baby but still supportive enough for the toddler and it’s my faaaaaaaaavorite color.What is your favorite carrier from the lending library?
The size 3 wrap nap fairy gray 100% linen wrap.  I was afraid of linen until I found the traditional sling carry love but wanted something that would give me a nice small knot so I ventured to the library to try linen.  I found the linen love.  It’s broken in and not crunchy which is what I was scared of.  It’s supportive and sooooo nice and thin.  It also helped me find shorty love.  I had a size 2 and wasn’t so much a fan, but 3s and I are buddies now 🙂

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How has babywearing benefited your life?
Wow, how has it not? My eldest was a high needs baby that needed to be held all the time and couldn’t sleep alone.  Babywearing allowed me to be hands free, give her what she needed and made me feel like an awesome mom for being able to take care of my baby AND myself!  My youngest is super chill.  But I have a toddler to keep up with also now.  Babywearing allows me to be close to the baby, bond with her, and even nurse her on the go all while still meeting the needs of an energetic toddler.
When do you babywear most often (either during a particular activity, time of day, or place)?
Everyday dinner prep and Saturday morning cleaning.


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You are having a baby and you can pick any carrier (but only one) to last from the newborn stage to the toddler days, what do you pick?
A size 6 wrap.There is a zombie apocalypse.  You have time to grab only one carrier, what do you grab?
Am I just grabbing it to save one or am I using it?  To use- a ring sling.  To save to use from now on: a size 6 wrap.


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Why did you decide to become a VBE?
I love babywearing.  I love teaching.  I love sharing the awesomeness that is babywearing.  Put them together and what do you get…a VBE! Do you have a favorite moment assisting someone with babywearing?
I recently helped a mom with newborn twins and 4 older kids.  By the end of our meeting she was wearing AND nursing both babies hands free.  It gave her so much freedom and ability to care for her older kids and herself by being able to carry both babies. Add nursing them on top of that…wow it was so fulfilling and rewarding to see her gain that “I can totally rock this mom of 6 attitude <3
Is there anything babywearing related you are still learning or looking forward to improving?
Always!  There are like a billion fifty different carries out there so I’m constantly learning. I also love leaning from my fellow V/A/MBEs.  Watching and listening to how they teach and picking up new tricks on how to help caregivers is awesome. 


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What are your other hobbies/ interests/ passions?
Dance! I started dancing at age 3, teaching at 16 and was a dance major my freshman year in college.  I had 4 major hip surgeries that sort of put a damper on majoring in dance but I did keep it up as a hobby.  I’m haven’t taken regular classes or taught in years (though I plan to soon) but you will always find me at the Babywearing Ballet classes!Thank you for sharing Ryann!  If you are interested in becoming a VBE or volunteering in some other way let us know!

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