Ethel and Charlie Muli of Minden say their marriage of 50 years is the foundation for how they have faced Parkinson’s together. Charlie was diagnosed with the disease 13 years ago but was undiagnosed for four years. They invite the public to join them for this year’s Parkinson’s SuperWalk on Sept. 16 in Haliburton. The walk-what-you-can event which is a fundraiser for Parkinson’s Canada will start from the bandshell at 11 a.m. and a potluck meal will follow. Check-in for the event is at 10:30 a.m. See for more information./DARREN LUM Staff

Midwives help deliver their first county baby of 2020

By Sue Tiffin

Published Jan. 14 2019

When Courtney Cook was scheduled to go to Peterborough Regional Health Centre on Jan. 3 to induce her pregnancy the thought crossed her mind that her baby might be the first Haliburton County resident born in 2020 under the care of the Midwifery Services of Haliburton-Bancroft. Almost 48 hours later Lennon Ivy Skelding joined her family – mom Courtney and dad Brandon Skelding – and midwife team to become the newest resident of Eagle Lake and Haliburton County’s first baby of the year.
“I said to Brandon I wonder if she’s going to be the first” said Cook. “I didn’t expect to be in labour so long so when the fifth came around I said we’ll see. And Brandon said man she’s pretty close to New Year’s. And I was like oh there’s got to be other ones. And it’s Lennon. So that’s pretty exciting.”
Weighing seven pounds six ounces measuring 19.5 inches long Lennon was born at 4:17 p.m. on Jan. 5.
“She’s doing fantastic” said Cook. “I may be biased but yeah she’s pretty cute.”

Cook praised the midwives for their support during her pregnancy Lennon’s birth and aftercare for the pair. She especially appreciated the time they took to answer her questions helping her be informed about care for her and her baby.
“The midwives you can be in there for an hour just asking them questions  and they explained the induction process from front to back” said Cook who experienced high blood pressure during her pregnancy which led to the induction. “I left the OB office and I’m like I’m not really sure what’s happening. And then I left the midwives‘ office and I said I know exactly what’s happening now. They’re just thorough and answer all your questions and give you the time and it’s just an amazing experience.”
Cook said she felt there was still some misunderstanding about midwifery care in the county.
“A lot of people even through my pregnancy were like oh are you sure you’re good with not having any pain meds? I was like guys you need to do your research it’s not that way at all” said Cook. “And their aftercare like six weeks of aftercare with them to be able to ask some questions and have that go-to person if you’re like oh I don’t know what’s wrong with my baby. That’s amazing you don’t get that when you go through just a regular OB.”

After Cook and Lennon returned home the midwives have visited to do wellness checks and ensure both mom and baby are thriving.
“They’ve come here and that’s amazing because there’s a lot of moms that can’t get up moving or too nervous to leave or whatever it may be” said Cook. “To be able to be in the comfort of your own home it’s pretty awesome.”
Cook said they were also able to help offer Brandon a chance to get something to eat during the long labour.
“Just their support even after I got the epidural they’re like close your eyes and rest. Don’t worry about us we’ve got stuff covered we’ll sit in the chair if you need us we’re here” said Cook. “They sent Brandon to get food so he was energized. They even help the dads which is awesome. It makes them feel way more a part of it too … He said to me as soon as it was done he said we’ll never do it any other way but these women because they’re amazing.”

Lennon has met all of her milestones and has made the two first-time parents exceptionally happy.
“I literally said to my husband I said I know we’re on Cloud 9 because we have a baby but I’m like I’m blessed with the relationship we have because it just clicked for both of us and we both just tackled it with I don’t want to say with ease because it’s not easy being a first time parent but it’s like together we just bounce off of each other” said Cook. “It’s just been so smooth. We’ve been together 14 years so it’s quite strong from the beginning but this is one of the best things that could ever happen to us for sure.”
Lennon is also welcomed by grandparents Bill and Marilyn Skelding of Blairhampton in Minden Hills and Dave Cook and Liz Postill of Algonquin Highlands.
Seth Koster of Bancroft was the first baby born under the Midwifery Services of Haliburton-Bancroft care this year on Jan. 3 at PRHC. Kinslee Hunter of Irondale is the first baby born at home in the county this year born in the evening of Jan. 5. Last year the Midwifery Services of Haliburton-Bancroft supported 106 babies – 48 boys and 58 girls. Seventy-two of those babies were born in hospital while 34 were born out of hospital. The midwives are currently booking clients up to and including September 2020.