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Today is Ivy Pearl’s birthday.  Actually, 2:12am this morning was.  She is officially 1 year today.  I am officially no longer the mother of an infant.  I approach this day with celebration and trepidation.  I am so happy to have a healthy, rambunctious little girl who is full of fight and fun.  I am excited about her being a toddler.  Even more excited about not having a big birthday bash for her like we tried with Deladis for the last three years.  We are having a simple celebration with just the four of us.  I’m going to make peanut butter balls for an after dinner treat.  We had a chocolate cake that I made at mom’s for them to eat.  Ivy didn’t like cake.

At first she thought it looked like fun!

At first she thought it looked like fun!

I am apprehensive about my feelings surrounding her birth.  It was this time last year that my water broke with no labor.  Then, I went through every stage of labor, but didn’t dilate.  It was this time last year that I waited for nearly 2 days to birth triumphantly, and birthed through cesarean a second time.  I am not actively grieving anymore, but I am still full of fire about spreading the word on cesarean births.  I tried a separate blog for that, but it didn’t seem to be working.  I am planning to include a few posts in the next few weeks on the topic here.  I can say that I feel having homebirth as a viable legal option should be a mainstay in every state.  Homebirth midwives are birth heroes in my eyes, and the reason that Ivy’s birth was as good as it was.

I am also sad that I will never have the chance at VBAC again.  It’s not that I want to parent another child, nor is it that I don’t.  I simply don’t believe it is right for me, right now.  I will never know how it feels to birth fully – birth true.  I’ve come to terms with that, but it doesn’t take away the desire to know the feeling.

I look at Ivy today and am happy for her and me.  We came through a year’s journey that was full and fulfilling.  I look at Ivy today and I am glad we are back in our holler, together as a family.  My girls make home a very unlonely place.  I look at Ivy today and I see her potential.  Full of spunk, spark – life.  I wonder what she will be.  I wonder who I will be when I look into a woman’s eyes and see my baby Ivy in there.  Happy Birthday Ivy Pearl.

Ivy Pearl: born 11 pounds – 22 inches (The journey began at 5pm on April 26th and ended at 2:12am April 28th.)



Ivy Pearl: Birthday + 1 – 19 pounds and 30 inches


There are times in mothering when you do things because you know they are best, but you aren’t sure how accepting your child is of it.  Then, you question if without acceptance is it really good for your child.  With an infant, sometimes enjoying something and tolerating it because there isn’t a much better choice, can look like the same thing.  I’ve wondered often if my Ivy really likes being carried in our mei-tai carrier.  We use the carrier everyday.  She has only been in a stroller one time in her life.  Strollers just aren’t practical off-grid.

Anytime she wants to be held and I have to do physical work, I put her in the pack.  More recently, she has started back riding.  It is convenient and allows her to be close to me when she wants to be.  It makes shopping so much easier when she is tired or cranky.  I’ve read that it is a soothing thing.  But, I’ve always wondered if it was just a fact of life for her or something she truly enjoyed.  It was Saturday that I got my answer.

Ivy will be celebrating her first birthday at the end of the month, and is becoming more and more able to express herself in a way that we all readily understand.  It is so sweet to watch.  Saturday, I got the mei-tai and started strapping it on my waist.  John and I were going to check on one of the cabins down the creek to make sure it would be ready for our landlord’s upcoming visit.  We were walking down as it was a sunny day and something to do.  When Ivy saw me preparing the mei-tai she got excited.  She clapped her hands and made joyful “uh-uh” sounds.  She was leaning toward me from her daddy’s arms before I even had the first knot tied.  It felt great to see a cute smile on her sick little face.

She really does like it!  She not only likes it – she loves it.  Ivy has had the croup the last 4 days and I know now that being worn is comfortable for her.  Not just tolerated, but a nurturing thing.  It feels good to do something right.

You can find mei-tai carriers at the following websites:

Baby Hawk –

Two Hearts Carriers –

Ebay –


About Me

An Appalachian woman born and raised, mothering two little girls in a place that is non-existent to AT&T or UPS. Happily working toward a sustainable lifestyle and writing on the demand of a loud muse.

June 2023

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