Friday, December 17, 2010

Merry Christmas from Arizona!


Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

It has been a whirlwind of activity since my last entry in July! As of December 1st, I am now an Arizonan once again...and VERY happy to be here! I miss my doula friends, midwives and family (past clients too!) so it is very bittersweet.

I'm looking forward to building new relationships with the local midwives and attended my first Birth Circle meeting last night. It felt so good to be in a group of women who share the same passion of birth and babies.

Who will my first Arizona mommy be that I will have the privilege of supporting through the amazing experience of labor and birth? Wherever you are, my prayer for you is that you will believe in yourself and your ability to do what your body was designed to do. You CAN do this! My part is to help you know your options, make you as comfortable as possible and to create a calm, intimate environment as you welcome your little one into your life.

Blessings to you and your family during this Christmas season. For me and my family, it is a time of reflecting on the true reason we celebrate...The birth of our Savior Jesus Christ!


Merry Christmas!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

You'll Soon Be on the Other Side!

As you're climbing that mountain, take moments along the way to see how far you've come. Progress...even if it's slow...is still progress. Keep heading in the intended direction and before you know it...You're on the other side!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

This little guy was in a hurry!

We made the 35 minute drive to the birth center and were told that it was still early labor so we drove back home to labor a while longer. I had suspected that baby was in a posterior position so as soon as we got back home I had Emily get into a couple different positions to encourage baby to turn. After about an hour, you could tell he was no longer posterior and labor quickly progressed. We had been home a couple of hours when we knew it was time to head back to the birth center. About 15 minutes after we left the house (remember...it's a 35 minute drive!) little Landon tried to be born in the car on I-5! I told Dad to go ahead and pull over...we were not going to make it to the hospital without a police escort. Right where we stopped, a policeman had pulled over a car on the other side of the freeway so we flagged him down. In just a few short minutes, an ambulance was zooming off to the hospital carrying a mama who was determined not to have her baby born in the ambulance. She got her wish...4 minutes after pulling into the hospital parking lot, little Landon made his arrival!



Landon Michael
June 28th, 2010 at 10:49am
Weighed 6lbs 13oz and 20 1/4" long
Evergreen Hospital
Proud parents are Emily and Kevin

Thursday, June 17, 2010

"Mother of Many" - The Life of a Midwife (Pause the playlist to the right)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Perception of Pain in Childbirth

When asked to share thoughts on pain in childbirth and/or a pain free childbirth without drugs, this is how one mom feels about her birth experience with her daughter. "I felt like it was more uncomfortable than painful... This is weird but I've broken bones, had a root canal, stubbed my toe and on a pain scale those were all much worse than labor... It felt like there was pressure with no where to go but out somewhere either through moaning or humming or whatever... Being able to do what I felt was right is what made the "pain"/uncomfortableness bearable." ~ Brigette Geary

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Happy for Wet Shirts :0)

"Waking up with a wet shirt means I had a good night's sleep!" ~ Karen, breastfeeding mama of 3 month old Libby :0)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Doula video to be released June 8th!

A new video will be released on June 8th that follows three doulas during the births of their clients. Click on the title above to watch the trailer!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Another amazing VBAC!

I run out of words when trying to describe the joy in the room when a woman pushes her baby out after being told by her OB, "I'm sorry, but you'll have to have another c-section!" This dad was overcome with absolute love and adoration as he encouraged his wife during the final stages of pushing. As he saw his son's head beginning to crown...Well, those moments are unspeakable so I'll leave you with this!



Meet Lucas Michael
Born May 12th, 2010 at 7:41 pm
Weight: 8lbs 10oz Height: 20 inches long
Joins big brother Caleb and sister Alynna

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Is Your Baby Too Big?

How many times have you heard a woman say, "My OB says my baby is too big to fit through my pelvis so I have to have a c-section or else be induced before my due date?" Maybe you've been told this. Well, a big baby doesn't have all the extra weight in their head only...It's dispersed throughout their body in squishy parts like buns and thighs. A larger baby has less room to become malpositioned or have a compound presentation since pelvic room often dictates a ONE-WAY fit!

Certain positions will make more room for your baby as well. Did you know that squatting can open your pelvis by as much as 30%? Squatting is a great position to use toward the end of pushing to make room as the baby's head is descending lower into your vagina and is just visible.

Tips for giving birth to a big baby:


  • Allow labor to begin on its own without being induced.
  • Use a variety of positions during labor and pushing.
  • Consider a squatting position if needed.
  • Ask for as much time in labor as possible, especially in pushing.
  • Use additional labor support such as a doula, to help you with pain relief techniques and progress.
  • Consider the benefits of a natural birth since pushing is more effective and progress is better than if you use pain medication. Also, pain meds can make it harder to get into certain positions such as squatting.
  • Get regular chiropractic adjustments so that your spine and pelvis are in alignment before you go into labor.
  • Practice your positioning and exercises during pregnancy so that your body is toned and has the stamina to stay in these positions, if needed, for 30 minutes or longer during labor.

Used by permission of author. Original article by Brenda Lane can be found by clicking on the title above.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Photo Shoot with Miss Poppy!

This is sweet, little Poppy at 5 weeks old...She was born on Easter morning!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

To all of the Moms out there and to those that are just beginning the journey of Motherhood...Have a VERY happy and blessed Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to my Mom who dreamed this photo four generations ago!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Ever wonder what exactly is in breastmilk?

Did you ever wonder what formula has in it? Click on the title to see the breakdown of ingredients in each...It's absolutely amazing!

Epidurals - Real Risks to Mother and Baby


The risks that come with an epidural should be considered long before labor begins. These risks are very real and effect both mother and baby. These facts are evidence based and the studies are sited at the end of the article. Click on the title above to learn more.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Test leads to needless C-Sections!

"Electronic fetal heart rate monitoring has probably done more harm than good." Taken from an article written in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology by Steven Clark and Gary Hankins, two prominent obstetricians. Click on the title above to read the complete article.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

If only...

...you could hold them in your hands forever...

Why I Love Being a Birth Doula :0))

I can't say it any better than this video!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Cesarean vs VBAC: A Real Life Drama

You've heard it said, "Once a c-section, ALWAYS a c-section!" There are actually only a few medical reasons for a required cesarean section but in most cases, few that require a repeat. This video is of a woman who had two prior c-sections and made the decision to have their third little girl at home in the water...Get out your tissues! You can also go to her webpage and read her story: http://www.empoweredmomma.net/main/about-us/52-my-home-birth-vba2c.html

Sunday, April 4, 2010

An Easter Poppy!

It's amazing how smooth birth can go when a woman is allowed to trust in her body! After only 10 hours of labor, "H" pushed out a beautiful baby girl! Her firstborn daughter was born by c-section so you can imagine the joy this mama is feeling! Her nickname in the womb was "Poppy" and this is what her big sister knew her as...So meet Poppy! Born on Easter Sunday so that makes her an Easter Poppy!


Poppy Mae
Born April 4th, 2010 at 12:12 pm
Weight: 8lbs 15oz and 20 inches long



Friday, April 2, 2010

Considering an Induction?

If you are considering a medical induction, this article is a MUST READ...Click on the title above!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

A very happy VBAC Mama!

The appointment was scheduled for a repeat c-section and the day was drawing closer...3 days...2 days...A castor oil shake...Contractions begin! Kelly was like a kid anticipating a trip to the candy store at the thought of being in labor! After 23 hours of tough labor and sheer determination, she had an awesome VBAC! A BIG thanks to Dr. Christina Kelly (Tacoma) who was one of Kelly's biggest cheerleaders! She comes highly recommended if you have had a prior c-section and desire to have a VBAC!

"The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother." ~ Theodore Hesburgh



A little girl has a way of immediately melting Daddy's heart. He plays such an important role in her life...You are her first love!



Leah Grace
Born at Tacoma General Hospital
March 18th, 2010 at 5:05 pm
Weight: 7lb 14oz Length: 20 1/2"
She joins 2 1/2 yr. old brother, Micah!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Ultimate Gift of Love...

Young, single, and unexpectedly pregnant...Not ready to be a parent. Faced with the choice of terminating a life or giving life, this young woman made the decision to carry this baby for another couple to parent. During the pregnancy, she went to great measures to make sure she was doing what was best to grow a healthy baby...Eating healthy, exercising, and no drugs or alcohol. She even went so far as deciding to have an unmedicated birth! Considering the fact that 76% of women today have an epidural during childbirth, this was AMAZING! I was honored to be the doula for this courageous, young woman who gave birth to a 9lb 2oz baby boy after only 3 1/5 hours of labor. The room couldn't have been any more peaceful as this beautiful little boy was born into the water and placed on his birth mama's chest. He was showered with kisses and lovingly admired before being placed into the arms of the wonderful couple that would be his parents. Little Brody...You're a lucky little guy and loved by so many!

Look at those lips!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Happy Birthday Libby!

After 5 hours of labor, Karen and Stephen got to meet their little daughter, Libby! Karen did an AMAZING job of bringing Libby into the world 100% natural. Yes, Karen...you have bragging rights! We had wonderful support from Nurse Jen who believes in the natural process of birth and delivered all five of her babies in the comfort of her home. Stephen...the loving support you gave your wife is more encouragement than you will ever realize!


Libby Evelyn
Born March 5th, 2010 at 5:33 am
at St. Franscis in Federal Way, WA
Weighed in at 7 lb 6 oz and 22 1/4" long
She joins big brother Brody (almost 3 yrs old)

Safe in her Daddy's arms!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Cervical Scar Tissue...A big issue that needs to be talked about!

"Have you ever had ANY procedure done to your cervix?" This is a question that every pregnant woman needs to be asked by her OB or Midwife. It should also be covered in a prenatal visit by the doula. Having scar tissue build up on your cervix can prevent your cervix from dilating even though you may feel or display transition type contractions. Click on the title to read some true-life stories!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Don't Clamp or Cut Too Soon...Watch the video!

Dr. Stuart Fischbein shares his thoughts on delayed cord clamping. There is more information on this in an article in TIME magazine. A study was done on a group of newborns where 50% of the infants (21 out of 41) who had the umbilical cord clamped/cut before they took their second breath showed moderate to severe signs of respiratory distress. Of the remaining infants whose cords had been clamped and cut sometime after the second breath was taken, only six suffered the same symptoms! Here is a link to the article: http://http//www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,830142,00.html

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Using Doulas for Birth Care by Penny Simkin

Penny Simkin wonderfully explains in this video the important role of a doula...She's been in the birth industry for 41 years!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Are Cervical Checks Necessary?

You might have some different thoughts about it after reading the article.

Blessing in Disguise!

This is the most beautiful birth story I have EVER read! WARNING: Go get the kleenex before you even begin to read a word! When you're ready...just click on the title above.

Monday, January 11, 2010

You're stronger than you believed!

Wow...You sure underestimated how much strength you had bottled up inside you! When it was time to dig deep and give it everything you had, you found the strength that was there all along. We are so proud of you, Sarah Jane!

Meet beautiful Elysa Jane!
Born at Lakeside Birth Center into her Daddy's hands...so sweet!
On January 9th, 2010 @ 2:45 pm
Weighed in at 6lb 14oz and 20 inches long
Her proud parents are Scott and Sarah Jane

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Why I love what I do...

I recently received a card along with a gift of services at a day spa from one of my clients:

"If we had gotten you the whole darn spa, I still wouldn't think we were thanking you enough for everything you have done (and are still doing) for us. Your support before, during, and after Dahlia's epic arrival has been so valuable to us. Thank you for being such an important part of our lives."

Thank you, Whitney and Nathan! I love a good massage but your words meant the world to me!

From 5cm to birth in 24 minutes!

There's nothing like being comforted by the loving arms of your Mama!

It took 15 hours of slow, tolerable labor (14 of those at home) to get to 5cm and then Elijah Mekhai was born 24 minutes later! Monet requested an epidural 45 minutes after we arrived at the hospital but agreed to try the tub first. She was so relaxed in the warm water that she thought the nurse had given her a shot of Fentanyl. No medication was given...just the natural releasing of endorphins! Next time girl, you better just plan on having your baby at home!


Meet Elijah Mekhai who was born on January 4th, 2010 at 1:24 pm. He weighed 6lb 12oz and is 19 inches long.








One hour old and already breastfeeding like a pro! You've done an awesome job and I have no doubt that you're going to be a great young mom.
Two proud Mamas!




Friday, January 1, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

2009 was the year I made the decision to follow my dreams of becoming a doula and helping women have the best birth experience possible. I had already attended 24 births so this was not a new passion. It began in June when I went through the Doula training and started the certification process. Since then, I've had the privilege of being a part of 10 wonderful births as an official doula...each one unique and a miracle!

As I look ahead at 2010, I'm excited to see what's in store...Who will I meet...What circumstances will I be faced with...Where will birth take me...When will I get to comfort a mom during a cesarean section...Why would I want to do anything else...How can I be so blessed to be doing something this special?