A Post Partum Hormone Inspired Post

You all know about the 3rd day bluesy/post partum/milk-coming-in day? If you’ve had a baby, you probably know what I’m talking about. I know it well. With all three kids, this day was real. Real as. I was warned about how the tears might flow, for unexplained reasons and how it’s hard to get a handle on it, but how it is also beautiful and emotional and hard and possibly a little out of control. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a feeler. I FEEL things. And so for me these days were full on. But I anticipated it.

What I had forgotten about, was the 1 week post baby endorphin high/low. Wow. Hormones man, they are HARD CORE. And so this past Friday it all came rushing back. I have to believe that for me the unknown of ‘going into labour’ has a lot to do with it – that hour by hour, reliving what went down exactly a week before, the ‘is this labour’ questioning, the call to the midwife/birth team, the drive to the hospital and the walking into (contraction-ing into) the delivery room… And then marking (and celebrating) the exact time of birth… Even the ‘settling into the quiet, safe, sacred space of your hospital room’… It all came flooding back.

And so after some tears trying to process this all with hubby, and some more tears upon messaging my midwife (and her always-beautiful replies), and some more tears in the shower (those are great hey?), hubby offered to take me back to where it all happened.

So last Friday at 6:30pm, we piled our new family of 5 into the car and went on our first official family adventure – back to the hospital where it all happened. Hubby pulled up at sunset, I hopped out the car with our 1 week old and paid the maternity ward a visit. And honestly… it was a bit random. Maybe I was expecting some ‘Hi Debbie, how are you, so lovely to see you again, would you like a coffee?!’ with the nurses I had befriended on my lone ranger (hubby-less) stay in the hospital. But it was random. I know, a little disappointing right?

Because it was on the way home, while listening to the CD we played when we brought all the kids home from the hospital, that it dawned on me. While place is significant, and always will be, PEOPLE are where it’s at.

It was my midwife (a hero of a woman, who, after being in her care makes me want to sign up for midwifery school immediately), who loved me, empowered me, lead me, and in return allowed me to lead in birth. It was my husband, who held my hand through it all, listened to my needs, encouraged encouraged encouraged, watched, witnessed, and believed I could birth our daughter into the world with grace and dignity. It was our doula, who was thinking about what I couldn’t think about at that time, whose mind was always on what I needed next, and who carried the journey of labour with me. And our friend and photographer, who I’m SOOO glad was there, to celebrate with us, to capture, to document the real life miracle that is birth (for which I am eternally grateful and will treasure the pictures forever!)

It was them. Sure, I loved my quiet, safe hospital stay with wonderfully supportive nursing staff. But that Team. Oh that Team.

They gave me courage, they believed, they knew, they guided, they inspired and they empowered me (in ones most vulnerable state), to do this crazy, beautiful, natural, wonderful, hard, tiring, unforgettable and mysterious thing called birth.

For you, Susan, Theran, Thato and Rebecca. Thank you. May we all do for each other in day to day life, what you did for me in Delivery Room 3, 16 September 2016.

All pics: Love Made Visible


My Heart on Silk

Something that has struck me recently, is how significant each person’s individual story can be. Story. It is powerful.

Chatting with my midwife a couple days ago, we were talking about how resilient we are, and how fragile we are at the very same time. And it’s so true. Our outlooks, attitudes, emotions and reactions often come down to a sequence of tiny little things, over years, weaved together to form our lives. And these things matter, often even defining us.

Having just celebrated my third baby (and possibly the surge of endorphins and surge of emotion that automatically comes with it) has made me think about this even more so. Our third child (I literally cannot believe I have three) was born 5 days ago, and oh wow, I could have a million more. These tiny little lives. They take your breath away. They consume our hearts in ways we could never imagine. I am absolutely smitten, and overcome by wonder and joy.

Recently I came across this gorgeous company, which shares this same sentiment and heart. And since I love all things local (they really are situated around the corner from me) and lekker, I wanted to share them with you – introducing Symbols on Silk.

We were SO fortunate to have Symbols on Silk join in the celebration of our newest family member by generously gifting me with a set of Bling Babies, representing each of my children. Ahhhh melt! How lucky am I? And like I said earlier, these tiny little (loud, crazy, sometimes drive-me-up-the-wall) blessings are my everything.

Symbols on Silk was founded in 2010 by passionate wife, mother (and now gushing grandmother) Linda Schneider, and which comprises of beautifully simple sterling silver designs, strung on a silk thread and packaged with a meaningful, and inspirational message. Each piece has been individually designed with heart in mind – the message chosen MEANINGFUL for its’ wearer. There are over 100 designs in the range (including both necklaces and bracelets) with the option of acquiring each charm in Silver, Gold or Rose Gold dipped. The range is locally manufactured in Cape Town, South Africa, and thanks to Linda’s two incredible jewellery ‘craftswomen’, each design is made with care. Each tells a story. 


And now, I have the privilege of being able to wear my little ones ‘close to my heart’… just as the message says. 

Day in and day out, throughout all of life’s experiences, from the blissful sublime to the downright difficult, we learn from it all. From the struggles, the joys, the waiting, the hopes and the celebrations. Symbols on Silk allows us to share these journeys and these experiences, without words.

But it doesn’t stop there. Symbols on Silk cares and speaks to the stories of not only their clients, but their communities as well. I love that as a company, a percentage of the proceeds from all Symbols on Silk sales is used to supply food parcels to the Yiza Ekhaya Soup Kitchen in Khayelitsha, and R10.00 from the sale of each Snowflake necklace or bracelet is donated to the Rebekah Ryan trust. These small acts change stories.

Take a peek at their range online here, and find what speaks to you.

Follow Symbols on Silk by joining their Facebook page, or shop online here.


Picture Credit: Brene Brown, Love Made Visible (birth picture), Symbols on Silk Website