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Welcome to the world, Declan Anthony! b. 10/3/18

Today's birth announcement comes from our fantastic doula, Emily. Take a look at her latest, announcing the birth of baby Declan Anthony:

fort myers doula baby

When I met Justin and Cassie they mentioned they were having a boy. Naturally, my first question was, "Do you have a name"? They answered, "no". I expressed that it has become more common to wait until the baby is born and that they had plenty of time to come up with a name; in fact I told them it took me 3 days to name my son after he was born. Throughout their pregnancy journey, I'm sure they were asked at least a 100 times the name of their unborn son.

Cassie's and Justin's prenatal visits with me focused on ways to shorten labor. They worked diligently on spinning babies techniques throughout pregnancy. Doing those forward-leaning inversions are no joke, but wow would they prove to be effective! They prepared with our Birthing From Within classes, learned ways to cope with the intensity of labor, and planned ahead with a stellar birth team, including midwifery care and, of course, a doula.

Signs of Labor

Cassie and I communicated often before her due date mostly by text. I received a text from Cassie on Wednesday October 3rd just before noon, a day after her due date; she described signs of labor (mucus plug stuff) but no contractions. Even though I was excited with the idea that labor was nearing, I figured I had plenty of time before I needed to leave for the birth. Boy, was I wrong!

Shortly after, I received another text where she described contractions as mild cramping coming in every 3 to 5 minutes. Since it's customary for me to speak with my clients at different stages of labor, I asked to speak with her on the phone. Talking on the phone between contractions proved to be difficult, not because of the intensity but because of the frequency. Cassie actually maintained amazing focus throughout labor and delivery.

I suggested they time contractions for an hour to see if they were established and also suggested a few spinning babies techniques to see if we could create some space in between these contractions that were coming so quickly. (Sometimes in early labor, if baby is in a wonky position, contractions come on close together and then space back out once baby is repositioned). Justin agreed to try some positioning exercises and to keep me updated.

Way to go, Dad

He called back within the hour to say they decided to head to the hospital! I reassured him that if she felt like going to the hospital would put her mind at ease then I would meet them there, even though they had only been in labor for a few hours and their plan was to labor at home for as long as possible. I found out later that it was Justin's idea to go to the hospital then, (way to go, Dad!) which proved to be a good one. Want to know why? On my way to meet them is when I received the text that she was 8 to 9 cm; I almost drove off the road in shock! Panic started to settle in as I realized I was 25 minutes away still, but I calmed down my mind, connected to my breath and miraculously arrived in 10!

I arrived at the hospital to find Cassie and Justin surrounded by staff and their midwife ready to catch what they felt like was going to be a torpedo baby.

Dream Baby

It wasn't long before Cassie entered the pushing stage which proved to be more challenging than the labor. After two and a half hours of pushing in every imaginable position, their midwife quietly planned to help the situation with an episiotomy. Cassie refused consent and with one last "humph" she delivered the most precious little guy, later to be named Declan. She did it! Her dream baby was here!

I acknowledge the careful thought that Casey and Justin put into naming their first child, so I took the liberty to look up the meaning of his name. Declan; A traditional Irish name meaning "man of prayer" or "full of goodness." I believe they chose wisely. I am ecstatic to help the new family announce the birth of Declan Anthony Checkelsky, the most precious gift given to Cassie and Justin. He was born on Wednesday , October 3rd 2018, "full of goodness" at 7 lb and 8 oz. stretching 20 inches long. Lifelong blessings to this precious family.

In doula love,



p.s. I heard you are looking for a doula, too! Which doula packages and childbirth classes are right for you?

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