Sometimes a difficult birth can lead to a colostomy bag being fitted, and many other issues in our modern times can also result in stoma’s and colostomy bags. This is just a fact of life for some Mums, and something that, like so many obstacles in life, we quickly learn to adapt to and live with. If you have a stoma there is no reason why the world of Babywearing should be a problem for you or a stranger to you ….. the beauty of Babywearing is that it is so adaptable and there are so many different carriers and methods out there you just need to find the one which is right for you.
I would probably think that most of the Soft Structured Carriers are out of the questions with a stoma as these probably are not adjustable enough to keep room for the bag, and their waist bands would cause a problem. However with some searching you could find a Soft Structured Carrier out there which doesn’t use a waist belt but still has the terrific back support qualities you would expect from a Soft Structured Carrier, the Kokopax Carrier is a framed carrier without a waist belt and could be an option.
the beauty of Babywearing is that it is so adaptable and there are so many different carriers and methods out there
Depending on the position of the stoma, a good suggestion might be a sling, either pouch or ring, which you could use as a Hip Carrier, these might also be useful for nursing as I know finding the best breastfeeding position can be a problem with stoma’s and bags.
The greatest flexibility for you would come from an Asian Style Baby Carrier, a Mei Tai. These wrap around strap designed carriers would offer you a number of strapping and carrying options. For example with a low stoma (beneath your belly button) you could knot the Mei Tai just under or over your breasts and comfortably carry your little one on your back. Also an option would be to master the art of Wraps, with practise you could master wrapping baby tight to you in a hip carry, some might give you the advice to use a wrap to carry baby on your back, but here are the reasons why I would not advise this: as soon as baby starts to lean backwards in a Moby wrap the material will stretch due to baby’s weight and pretty soon it will slip off your shoulders and baby could fall to the ground, the more active baby gets the more the material stretches and however tight you tie/wrap them in there, the more give there will be for your little Houdini to slip their knots and escape!
In summary, with a stoma or colostomy bag, the wonderful world of Babywearing shouldn’t be something you and baby can not enjoy, in fact by wearing baby, you are keeping them up high and close by, so you are not always having to bend down putting strain on your bag and stoma. The best positions for you would be Hip Carrying or Back Carrying, and with this in mind I would recommend you look to Mei Tai’s, master the various carrying positions and then look for ways to position the straps in the most comfortable way for you, baby, and your stoma. For a more structured carrier look at the Kokopax framed carrier, although this will not give you the flexibility of carrying styles you will have on offer with a Mei Tai.