• This is a unique birth story to share.  I was honored to have helped A welcome her own baby into the world at home a couple years ago, you can read my version here and her version here.  This time, A was being a surrogate for a couple who were excited to be welcoming TWINS […]

  • A and J started care with me in the first trimester of their sixth pregnancy.  This was their second baby that I got to be their midwife.  You can read about their first birth with me here. A came to group prenatal on June 11th, and wanted to try some herbal tea and a sweep […]

  • T and H started care with me in the first trimester of their second pregnancy.  They had birthed their first child at a birth center, and were looking forward to staying home for this little one’s journey. At her 39.0 weekly appointment, T was talking about how she really hoped she would go into labor […]

  • K and M started care with me at the end of the second trimester of their second pregnancy.  K’s pregnancy progressed along beautifully. The last week before her due date, K began to experience an increase in braxton hicks.  She had her regular weekly appointment the day before her due date, and decided she would […]

  • K started care with us at the end of the second trimester of her first pregnancy.  She was currently under care with an OBGYN that she didn’t feel was supportive of her wishes.  K knew my apprentice Rowan, and decided to start care with us. K was fantastic at taking any advice and guidance we […]

This is a unique birth story to share.  I was honored to have helped A welcome her own baby into the world at home a couple years ago, you can read my version here and her version here.  This time, A was being a surrogate for a couple who were excited to be welcoming TWINS into the world.  Due to legalities and safety concerns from the parents, A was having these babies in the hospital, with me by her side to support her through the process.

At 36 weeks gestation, A decided she wanted to try and see if a natural encouragement would help get her in labor and avoid interventions her OBGYN was wanting to soon make happen.

A came over around 11am on the morning of June 17, 2017 for a membrane sweep and herbs.  We were all surprised to find A was a very stretchy 4cm dilated, 100% effaced, and baby A was at a -1 station.  I swept her membranes, and she easily opened to 5cm.  She hung out at my office with her second doula, M, while we did herbs for a couple hours and some positioning techniques.

A headed home around 1pm with the mission of a nap and some “home work” that I knew should get her uterus contracting.

A was beginning to get more uncomfortable as 4pm neared.  She asked me to come, so I prepared and arrived at her home at 445pm.  Contractions were coming every 2-3 minutes, 60 seconds long.

A wanted to be checked so I did an exam.  She was 6cm dilated now, however I felt that her cervix was beginning to swell so I requested she did open knee chest for 40 minutes to help with the swelling on her cervix.  M sat and entertained her at the front, while I sat at her back and did counter pressure with contractions.

After the 40 minutes were up, A got up and moved around.  She stated, “My labia hurts so bad.  I feel like its going to fall off and roll down my leg.”   What made it funnier is when her toddler came into the room a few minutes later and informed us all that “there is a bug on my labia.”  We all busted out laughing.  M provided counter pressure while A moved around the room.

I suggested we go out for a walk.  We went outside at 550pm, where I attempted to get A to walk at a vigorous pace but she thought I was funny about that!

The contractions were coming regularly and strong during the walk.  We came back to the house around 610pm for A to hydrate.  She remembered a birth she had been at with me where the client had eaten cheesecake in labor, and she decided she really needed some cheesecake.  We joked about Golden Girls while A enjoyed her few bites of cheesecake, having to breathe through contractions every couple of minutes.

A agreed to do another round of ten contractions for lift and tuck, so M got ready to do that.  It made the pressure and contractions stronger, so A decided she was ready for another exam.

It was now a few minutes passed 7pm. A was 7cm dilated, 90% effaced and was having a good amount of bloody show.  Since she was 25 minutes from the hospital, she decided she wanted to go ahead and head that way.

We arrived at the hospital at 745pm. The hospital A had chosen to have the babies at was a smaller hospital, so small that they have no doctors at the hospital.  When we walked in, A was so chill that the nurses did not believe she was really in labor.  When they checked her and found that she was 7cm, they immediately moved her from triage and into a labor suite.  She was the only laboring patient at the hospital that night.

Now this is where things start turning south.  They couldn’t get the second baby on the monitor for anything.  When they finally found baby B, it looked very possible that baby B was no longer head down.

The on call OB arrived around 830pm, and performed an ultrasound where he found baby B to now be breech.  He talked with A and said he had no problems delivering since baby A was head down, however he demanded that she needed to get an epidural as he guaranteed he would need to stick his entire hand up her vagina to get the second baby out, and he wasn’t going to tolerate her fighting and squirming on the table.

A asked for time to think.  She and I walked into the bathroom, and talked.  She was upset about the treatment, but decided an epidural was better than a cesarean, and if she met him half way, then maybe he wouldn’t push a cesarean.

He came back into the room, and began to bait and switch.  He realized her doctor would not do a vaginal birth with baby B breech, and started listing off all the reasons why they should go back to the OR for a surgical birth.  We were all fuming mad.

At this point he did an exam, and found her to be 7cm.  He asked for an amniohook.  I told A that he was going to break her water, was that okay?  A immediately said, “I do not want my water broken.”  However, he didn’t care.  He broke it anyway, and said that he wasn’t going to be stuck there all night.

His great plan of breaking her water came to back fire.  Her IV had just been started, so she did not have enough fluid to get an epidural.  A was in the throws of transition now, with out her bag of waters, and they thought she could just hold out.

The anesthesiologist began to aggressively pump bags of fluid into her with a special tool.  A was feeling cold and shaky, a combo of the hormones and the fluid.  In a brief, humorous moment, A mentioned that she forgot to get a blender to make her placenta smoothies, and the anesthesiologist had a mini freak out.  We all laughed.

By 945pm, she finally had enough fluid that she was ready for the epidural.  We left the room, returning at 1010pm after it was placed.

I knew things were close, and asked for the surgical scrubs so I get dressed.  The nurse placed the catheter, and quickly found A was 10cm.  I quickly dressed, with the help of M.  The OB verified the check, and wanted to get her in the OR.  The catheter was promptly removed (this is key for a later issue), and A was wheeled to the OR to get settled.  I waited outside until they were ready for me.

Like a boss, A pushed out baby A quite easily and swiftly at 1035pm, weighing in at 6lbs 1oz.  The real fun came with baby B.  It sounded from the dialogue that baby B was footling breech.  The doctor was all up in there trying to grab a foot.  He finally succeeded, and a huge gush of amniotic fluid was all over the place, followed by some legs and butt.  The doctor was very hands on the breech, and chose to use forceps to aid the delivery of the head.  Baby B was born at 1043pm, weighing in at 5lbs 12ozs.

Quite amazingly, A had no tearing from pushing out two babies and all the manipulation with the delivery of the second baby!

We arrived back in the labor room at 1101pm, for A to have postpartum monitoring.  I helped A begin to pump colostrum.

The next three times the nurse came to check the firmness of A’s fundness, A passed a large amount of clots and bleeding.  The nurse seemed perplexed by this.  After the third time, I placed my hand on her fundus and told A that she needed to try to pee.  Her fundus was way too high due to the fullness of her bladder.  Everyone had forgotten that A had only had a catheter for a couple minutes, and hadn’t had her bladder emptied in quite awhile.

It was quite a different experience for A, but she definitely feels if she decides to be a surrogate again, she wants to do it back at home.

It was such a privilege to support A through another birth journey.  She is amazing!  #sacredjourneymidwifery

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A and J started care with me in the first trimester of their sixth pregnancy.  This was their second baby that I got to be their midwife.  You can read about their first birth with me here.

A came to group prenatal on June 11th, and wanted to try some herbal tea and a sweep to see if it would get her labor going.  She was ready to meet her baby, and was hoping to avoid having her baby around my surgery and needing a back up midwife.

When A arrived, she was already having some regular contractions.  A drank the herbal tea during the group prenatal.  At 3pm, when the event was over, we did vitals and a membrane sweep.  A was 2-3cm dilated, 70% effaced, and baby was at a -2 station.  She was feeling contractions about every 5 minutes, lasting 50 seconds in length.  A went home, and we discussed when to call me to come.

A couple hours later, A requested for me to come.  Her contractions were frequent and long, and she felt like she wanted me to be there.  I, as well as the birth team, arrived about 545pm.

A was walking around the house, having to pause and breathe with contractions every 3 minutes, lasting 90 seconds.  I suggested letting me do a set of ten lift and tucks with the rebozo, and A agreed.

After the lift and tuck, A felt that she was feeling more in her back and she was ready to get into the pool to labor.

A got out of the pool to use the toilet around 730pm.  Since it had been almost 5 hours since our last exam, A agreed to an exam while out of the pool.  I found her to be 4cm dilated, 80% effaced, and baby at a -2 station with a bulgy bag of water.  I swept A’s membranes again.  She decided to labor for a few contractions on the toilet.

At 8pm, A got back into the birth pool.  She commented that her contractions just felt stronger on the toilet for some reason this labor.  She periodically applied clary sage essential oil during her labor.

A got back out of the pool around 840pm to move to the toilet.  She had been praying over the last 90 minutes for her water to break, but then realized she had been taking a large amount of collagen daily in pregnancy and may have a bag of steel.  She asked me questions about breaking her water, which I answered.  Contractions were 3-4 minutes apart, lasting 60-90 seconds, and palpated strong.

A walked around her bedroom, while waiting for T to come back.  She snacked on a granola bar while we chatted.

T walked into the room around 915pm, and A began setting out a chux pad on the bed to lay on.  I asked her what she was thinking, and she said it was time to break her water.  She felt she could have a baby quickly if the bag was gone, and she was ready to get the show on the road.

I broke her water at 920pm.  We had expected there to be a large amount of fluid, and it had not let us down.  A was 6cm dilated, 90% effaced, and baby was at a -2 station.

A got right back into the pool to continue her labor journey.  As 10pm neared, A began grunting at peaks.  She felt baby was close, and he might come at any moment.

A got out of the pool shortly after 1030pm.  She said the contractions just weren’t strong enough, and she didn’t think the baby was meant to come in the pool.  She labored on the toilet.  She began to actively push while on the toilet at 1033pm.  A felt like he was right there, and I found him to be at a +3 at 1040pm.  I began to gently coach A to squat over the toilet versus sit so that we could catch the baby.

The baby’s head was born at 1042pm, followed by the rest of his body a minute later while A squatted over the toilet.  He was here!

Welcome to the world Seth, born on June 11, 2017 at 1043pm, weighing in at 8lbs 4ozs, 20″ long.  Repeat clients are so special, and I am so blessed that I got to walk this journey with A and T for a second time.  A did a perfect job at bringing her baby earthside in the way he needed to come.

#sacredjourneymidwifery

 

T and H started care with me in the first trimester of their second pregnancy.  They had birthed their first child at a birth center, and were looking forward to staying home for this little one’s journey.

At her 39.0 weekly appointment, T was talking about how she really hoped she would go into labor before her due date, and really hoped the labor journey went quick, but knew it was too much to ask.  Little did T know the journey in store for her!

The following day, June 3rd, H sent me a text a few minutes passed 12pm saying that T was feeling some irregular contractions, but felt confident that this was the start of labor and thought maybe I might want to take a nap.

H sent me a text at 1:31pm saying he thought T’s water broke but wasn’t sure.  He sent a picture, and I could confirm her water was definitely broke.  While en route, H sent me a  contraction timer that showed contractions coming every 2 minutes, lasting 50-60 seconds.

I got out of the house quickly, and started reaching my birth assistant and apprentices as no one even knew that anyone was labory.  Thankfully two out of three were able to quickly get out of their house and head that way.

I arrived at 226pm, and found T laboring backwards on the toilet.  The primal low moans told me baby wasn’t far away.  T’s mom helped me quickly get the bed made so that it would be ready for postpartum.

T said she was feeling a lot of pressure in her butt.  Baby was also showing that she was close to birthing, as she was having some slight decels at the beginning of contractions.

T really wanted to have a water birth like she did with her first, but there was no time for the birth pool.  She got into her bath tub on her hands and knees and labored.

My apprentice R and assistant H arrived around 240pm, and quickly finished getting things set up for delivery.  I began dosing T with a homeopathic to give more oxygen to the baby.

T began to push at 245pm.  I suggested she move into semi reclining and do tug of war with the rebozo with H to help get baby under the pubic bone.

T moved to squatting as she pushed at 255pm.  I suggested to T that she needs to deliver out of the tub, as the bath wasn’t holding water well and I felt baby would be born more quickly if T was more comfortable.

T agreed and moved to her room.  We threw down a shower curtain in the middle of her floor and T moved into hands and knees at 258pm. The next push brought the baby to crowning.  T did not wait.  As soon as baby was crowning, she continued to push and birthed her sweet baby into H’s waiting hands.  She was here!

Welcome to the world Brooke, born earthside on June 3rd, 2017 at 3:00pm, weighing in at 7lbs 8ozs, 19.25″ inches long.  T has been shopping at Hobby Lobby that morning feeling cramping, and was holding a baby when her toddler was waking from nap time.  Such an honor to support this sweet couple on their quick, peaceful home birth. #sacredjournerymidwifery

K and M started care with me at the end of the second trimester of their second pregnancy.  K’s pregnancy progressed along beautifully.

The last week before her due date, K began to experience an increase in braxton hicks.  She had her regular weekly appointment the day before her due date, and decided she would try to do a sweep and some herbs and see if baby was ready to come.

On May 26th, the day before her due date, K was experiencing a lot more cramping and braxton hicks.  I found her cervix to be dilated 1-2cm, 80% effaced, and baby was at a -2 station. I swept her membranes, and gave her an herbal labor tea blend.  We discussed going for a walk, and letting me know how things progressed.

Contractions continued to increase in intensity and become more frequent through out the day, taking a change into active labor around 8pm.  K and M asked me to come at 1045pm as the contractions were very intense and lasting a minute long.

I arrived at 1135pm, and found K peacefully laboring in her bath tub.  We did a check in on how things were going.  Contractions were coming every 3 minutes, lasting over a minute long.

K moved to the toilet as midnight drew near so that I could do her vitals.  I could tell by physical changes that things were moving along, and the exam completely agreed!  K was 7cm dilated, 100% effaced, and baby was at a +1 station.

K labored sitting on her bed, while waiting for the birth pool to finish filling.  Nausea was starting to come in waves.  Contractions were coming every 3 minutes, lasting 75 seconds after the exam.

As the pool was almost ready, K decided to move to the toilet before the birth pool.  She was starting to feel some pressure now as it seemed the baby was moving down.

K sat in the warm water of the birth pool at 1251am.  She was feeling warm, so we began to apply cold wash clothes to her forehead and neck to help keep her cool.

As 130am drew near, K said the pressure was getting to be intense, and she felt as if her body was pushing at the peaks of the contractions.  I encouraged K to allow the pressure to build until it was unbearable.

As 2am was nearing, K decided she would like an exam.  She had an anterior lip, and baby was at a +2 station.  I discussed options, and K decided that she would like me to reduce her cervical lip.  Within two contractions, the lip was gone.

At 201am, K’s water broke.  Baby was shocked from her cushion being taken away, so we gave K a homeopathic every few minutes to help with the decelerations in her heart rate.  It worked like a charm, and soon little one’s heart beat had normalized.

The baby’s head began to crown at 214am, followed by the birth of the head and baby a minute later.  Sweet Raelynn was here!

Welcome to the world Raelynn, born earthside on May 27th, 2017 at 215am, weighing in at 7lbs 4ozs, 20″ long.  It was such a blessing to support this sweet couple through their peaceful, gentle home water birth.  #sacredjourneymidwifery

K started care with us at the end of the second trimester of her first pregnancy.  She was currently under care with an OBGYN that she didn’t feel was supportive of her wishes.  K knew my apprentice Rowan, and decided to start care with us.

K was fantastic at taking any advice and guidance we had.  We talked about taking childbirth classes, and she signed up that day.  She hired a doula within days of us suggesting it.  She began chiropractic care.  She was doing everything she needed to make for the most ideal birth experience.

K sent a text to the birth team at 8am on May 15th letting everyone know her water had broken at 430am.  She wasn’t feeling much activity yet.  K was going to shower and eat breakfast, then come by around noon for vitals, an exam, and some herbs to get contractions to start.

K arrived with her friend a little after 12.  Vitals were great.  K was feeling very mild contractions coming every 8 minutes, lasting 30 seconds long.  K was 3cm dilated, 70% effaced, and baby was at a -1 station.  I swept her membranes, which felt intense to K.  Cervix felt stretchy after the sweep.  K drank the labor tea blend, while we talked about a game plan for once she left.  We discussed eating a good lunch and then going for a vigorous walk.

K’s doula came over about 630pm that night to help do some positions to get contractions to come more frequent and stronger.

A little before midnight, K’s doula sent us a text and asked Rowan and I to come.  We both arrived right around 1245am.  We found K laboring in her living room.  All vitals were fantastic.  I did an exam at 115am, and found K to be 5cm dilated, 100% effaced, and baby at a -1 station.  Contractions were coming every 4 minutes, lasting 75 seconds, and felt moderate in intensity.

K walked around the house, while we suggested doing lift and tuck times ten contractions with the rebozo.  K agreed, and Rowan got to work.  Contractions intensified with the lift and tuck, and K began to gently moan with contractions.

K wanted to rest at 230am.  We got her in the bed on her left side, encouraging her to rest in between contractions.

K was up a little after 3am.  She labored on the birth ball for a few minutes, before moving to hands and knees on the couch.  She was feeling uncomfortable, and felt like hands and knees with hip movement provided some relief.  Contractions were coming every 5 minutes, lasting 120 seconds.

K alternated positions in her living room over the next couple of hours, doing what felt good to help bring her baby down.  In hands and knees, she was starting to feel a small amount of pressure at the peaks of contractions.

K was working so hard.  She was in tune with her baby.  As 5am neared, K spoke so sweetly to her baby.  “This hurts.  Taylor come out.  Mommy can’t do this much more.”

I did an exam at 515am, and K was 7cm, 100% effaced, and baby was at a 0 station.  We all were so excited with the great progress K had made!  K decided to lay on her left side in her bed for a few minutes.

The birth pool was ready a little after 6am,  and so was K!  She readily got into the birth pool, and sat in the warm water.  She felt the water felt good, and helped take the edge off.  Contractions were coming every 5 minutes, lasting 90 seconds, and they felt strong.

Rowan did another round of lift and tuck with K during the 7am hour while K labored in the birth pool.  It brought the intensity up another notch, helping us get closer to the goal.

K got out of the pool quarter to 9am.  She decided she wanted a check, and then we recommended a position change.  K was 8-9cm, 100% effaced, and baby at a +1 station.  K was making perfect progress.

Rowan and I talked to K about trying the open knee chest position for 40 minutes to help baby’s position and get us closer to pushing.  K was such a trooper, and agreed to try the position.  A couple birth team members stayed at her side to encourage her.  Contractions were coming every 5-6 minutes, lasting 120 seconds in this position.

K stuck with it, but was definitely ready for the birth pool when the 40 minutes was over.  K got back into the birth pool at 930am, laboring on her knees.

K tried laboring in a semi reclining position in the pool.  Contractions began to space to every 8 minutes.  However, K began stating that she was feeling so much pressure.  I did an exam a little before 11am, and found K had just an anterior lip.  K decided to try one contraction with me holding the lip back, but the pressure was too intense and she decided she would rather breathe through contractions a little bit longer.

K got out of the pool at 1122am, instinctively feeling that she needed to labor in the open knee chest position.  We helped her get into this position in her bed.

I checked K at 1215pm.  She still had an anterior lip.  She agreed that she wanted me to try and hold the lip.

Then, such a big lesson on how the mind is powerful happened.  Contractions stopped.  K had a history of trauma, and her body just shut down.  We tried using homeopathy and essential oils, and nothing.

K tried changing her position to bring on a contraction, and nothing.  We encouraged K that she was safe, and it was safe to have her baby.  At 1250, I recommended K speak to her therapist to see if that would help.  After a call over speaker, K decided she needed to have this baby in the hospital.

We all helped K get things together to go to the hospital.  Rowan and her doula went to the hospital with her.  K received great care with nurses and the OBGYN, and finally got to meet sweet Taylor a few hours later!

Welcome to the world Taylor, born earthside on May 16, 2017, weighing in at 8lbs 15ozs.  K was so strong through her intense labor journey, and brave to know when it became too much and making those tough decisions that were best for her and Taylor for Taylor’s birthing time.  It was an honor to work with this sweet mama.  #sacredjourneymidwifery