Chemainus can lay claim to the first baby born in 2021 at Cowichan District Hospital.
The as-yet unnamed girl, weighing eight pounds and nine ounces, was born at 12:45 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 7 to parents Robin Ringer and fiance Wyatt Gilmore. It’s the first child for the couple and exciting for them to have the New Year’s baby in the Cowichan Valley.
“I’m pretty shocked,” said Ringer, 24. “It was a week in.”
She was in labour for two days. The baby was actually due around Jan. 12 so she arrived a few days earlier than expected.
“I survived,” said Ringer. “It was an experience, for sure, but it went by pretty good.”
A few days after the birth, the new mother said she was “starting to feel like myself and get back at it.”
Of course, there’s always a new sleeping pattern – or more precisely, a lack of sleep – that’s required an adjustment.
“You don’t really know what to expect till she comes, especially the first,” reasoned Ringer. “I still can’t believe I created her. She’s so beautiful.”
“Awesome, I love it,” Gilmore described of being a father.
The new parents were grateful to Matraea Midwives for all their support.
“We had an amazing experience,” said Gilmore. “We can’t believe the care we were given.”
It’s the third grandchild for proud grandma Janice Blundell, who works as the front manager at the Chemainus Bakery. Blundell’s other daughter, Krystal Blundell from Duncan, is also expecting a baby around Feb. 18 that will become Janice’s fourth grandchild.
Blundell was at the hospital, but not present in the room when Ringer gave birth.
“I thought ‘it’s not the New Year’s (baby),’” she indicated. “When we got to the hospital, (we found out) it is the New Year’s baby.”
Blundell is very excited for her daughter and what lies ahead.
“It’s going to be beautiful for her to raise a family,” she said. “I’m just a grandma. I get to walk home.”
Ringer and Gilmore have settled into a place temporarily after just relocating from Fort Nelson.
“We’ve been here for about two months now,” noted Ringer. “It’s definitely been a different winter, but I’m not complaining.
“It is beautiful up there, but it’s definitely not for the light-hearted. I’m loving it down here.”
Ringer also has an older brother, Ben Blundell, who’s a professional skateboarder in Vancouver. Younger brother Nic Blundell, a Chemainus Secondary School graduate, won a gold medal with teammates from the South Island in wheelchair basketball during the 2018 B.C. Winter Games in Kamloops.