Part 1: Our Little Buddy is Born!

14 November 2016

(Part 2 and Part 3).


Our baby girl has arrived.  Charlotte Rae. 

ooooh man.

In the middle of the night, when I hover over her and tell her how precious she is, I am Golem.

Here's all the facts.  She was born at 6:17pm on November 5.  She weighed 8 lb. and 9 oz.  Her body was 21.5 inches long, and her head was 13.5 inches in diameter.  She is a healthy baby.  She truly is strong and sturdy and developed in a lot of ways.  And, has quite the reserve of healthy fat stores.  Which my midwives say is fantastic to see on a newborn, and that means that I did a good job eating my healthy fats during pregnancy.

Ryan and I just feel so blessed to have a child.  When things feel right in order, I feel indescribable peace.

My labor began on Friday after Mike and Christy left our house after watching a movie.  Which was all a huge joke, because just over 6 months ago, Christy went into labor the night that Ryan and I went over to their house to watch a movie.  Pizza and a movie.  That did her in.  So they came over to our place as a joke to get Charlotte out.  And lo and behold, they leave and my labor begins.  (Though, I wouldn't say that really did the trick.  I did a couple other natural inducers that day, and I believe it was the acupuncture).

Anyways, I knew it was the start of my labor because I started experiencing contractions that were acute enough to be the real deal!  I'll never forget how when I woke Ryan up around 1:30, he leaped out of bed with excitement and finished putting the final items in our hospital bag.  Aka: our laundry basket.  Because you never know how things will go, and Ryan's mom and sisters progressed fast.  Well, not me.  At least for this first labor.  I spent the next 11 hours laboring at home, and Ryan and I did our best to sleep between each contraction - which was not a lot.

The next morning, the contractions weren't following the set criteria for density and duration that signals you to call your midwife.  But, they were getting considerably more intense and painful.  At 11:30 am, we took our peach toast and laundry basket out the door and headed to the birth center.

I then labored for 7 unceasing, nearly unbearable hours at the birthing center.

I'll skip all the intricacies of the hard and heavy labor.  Perhaps, I'll share that later.  But I will just speak on "The Ring of Fire." Which is the burning sensation women get as the baby's head is being puuuuuuushed out.  Oh my gosh that was the most insane sensation I have ever experienced.  When I recall it, I feel a reverberation back into my animal side.  That's what my midwife told me after the labor experience - women have their human side, the logical mind trying to think through the process, and they have their animal side, which makes the experience less lucid and more just bearing down within the natural forces of nature.  Woman must turn into their animal brain in order to meet the work of natural labor.  It is true.  Ryan said through The Ring of Fire, I was a beast.  After several pushing contractions, my midwives and apprentices said lots of wow's and then remarked that I am clearly a woman meant to have babies.  Ha!  Ryan said he has never seen someone in his life exert so much strength and force from the entirety of their body.  I was sitting on him in the birthing pool, and he said at every contraction and time to push, he could feel every last muscle in my body turn to iron, and I became a beast.  How savage and incredible!  During The Ring of Fire, I was the most superior and powerful animal on earth.

The next few days, my muscles were so sore, and I kept asking Ryan, "Why would this muscle be sore?  When did I use my triceps in labor?  My traps too?"  And he would keep telling me about the time I turned into a beast, pulling with all my force on his arms as I pushed, and I would relish in the feeling of being animal queen for those minutes.

I remember other moments too.  Like one of my apprentice doulas squatting in front of me on the floor, while I surged through contraction after contraction.  And after the intensity was releasing, she would say, "Let that one go.  You will never have to worry about that contraction again.  It's completely over and done.  That one is gone and you did it."  And I would let it go.  And I would let the next one go.  And the next one.  I loved that.

The birthing experience is indescribable.  Right after delivery, I felt like an entire tsunami had stormed through my body.  Like every last part of my insides had been dislodged and thrashed.  And once Charlotte became the newest angel to enter Earth, I laid there on the bed, getting stitched up by my midwife, and I looked at Ryan with tears in my eyes and felt horrified.  I felt erupted - body and mind.  And I found such irony that he was wearing the triathlon T-shirt from our race over two years ago, because at the end of that race is the only other time I remember feeling so traumatized inside my body.  Except the way I felt overwhelmed at the end of that race was not near to the degree at which I felt so after Charlotte was born.

Charlotte's labor was incredibly intense and difficult.  But, I did it. :) 
(I mean, you couldn't stop the force of birth if you wanted too....)

I end for now.  Our Little Princess will be awake soon.

She's cooing in her sleep.  :)

Upward and onward,


  1. 1. She is so beautiful. She makes me want to get pregnant again although I am pretty sure I am not ready for that yet.
    2. You look absolutely radiant!
    3. I love the way you describe birth.

  2. Oh Chantel, there are tears in my eyes! I love you, and can't wait to hug you and Charlotte. So proud of you, so inspired by your animal queen power!