Happy Homebirth

The Happy Homebirth podcast is your source for positive natural childbirth stories, and your community of support, education and encouragement in all things homebirth and motherhood.

When it comes to giving birth, what’s your risk tolerance?  Are you more comfortable with the risk of giving birth at home and assessing the situation as it comes, or are you more comfortable with the risk of the often unnecessary interventions and fallout that come with them of the hospital?

 

This week we’re speaking with Erycka, a nurse by trade and mother of two.  Erycka, like all of us whether consciously or unconsciously, had to decide the level and type of risk she was willing to accept during her births, and she then had to face some of those risks head on.  Her two birth stories start the same… her water breaks… and from there they are completely different experiences.  I know you’re going to enjoy these two stories!

 

Episode Roundup:

 

Wow, what a discussion.  As we head into this weeks episode roundup, I want to delve into the concept of spectrum of risk just a tad bit more.

 

Birth carries risk.  If anyone tries to tell you that it doesn’t, they’re either lying or just not thinking.  Because life itself carries risk.  Every moment, every decision— we have no idea how any little event will turn out… and birth is a perfect example of this.

 

But does that mean that birth, specifically homebirth is inherently dangerous?   No, and I would argue that it’s often times less dangerous and risky than walking into the hospital as a low risk laboring mother.  You SHOULD BE  to be the one in charge of the decisions being made for yourself and your baby, as they impact you two directly.  When we hand our care over to others, we shouldn’t be surprised when they act in THEIR best interest instead of our own.

 

So yes, giving birth carries risks.  We can mitigate many of them through education and through preparation (of course I highly recommend Happy Homebirth Academy for this), and through choosing a care team with whom we feel comfortable and confident. 

 

And does that mean everything’s going to go perfectly?  Of course not.  But we also don’t know if everything’s going to go perfectly when we step outside of our house to get the mail, either. 

 

So let’s celebrate birth for the swirl of control and chaos that it is, and prepare ourselves— to understand our responsibilities, to understand what we can do to encourage a positive experience— and then let’s enjoy the ride.

 

Alright, let’s wrap up.  Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag @happyhomebirthpodcast and tell me your favorite takeaway from this episode!  And I’ll see you back here next week.

When you think about your upcoming homebirth, how do you feel?  Excited about meeting your baby?  Prepared to embrace the experience of labor?  What about…. Scared out of your mind of the pain?

 

 

This week we are speaking with Kelli Ingram, a mama who has decided that after having 4 lovely epidural births in the hospital, she’s bringing it home…. Though she’s the first to tell you that she’s terrified of the pain.  This week’s episode is a little different, as Kelli won’t be sharing her homebirth story— because she hasn’t had her baby yet!  She’s sharing her experience as a hospital-loving mother who turned to homebirth so that her family could be involved even amidst the pandemic restrictions.  So Kelli and I go through some discussion of mindset, some options and plans for her preparation…. And then we wait.  We’ll be doing a follow-up episode with Kelli after her baby is born in August.  I’m so excited to hear how this all plays out in real time.

 

This show is not meant to prescribe or treat- it’s an educational tool, so continue to take empowered responsibility for your health and your family.

 

Episode Roundup:

I am so excited for this super unique opportunity! I can’t wait for Kelli to come back on the podcast after diving into HHA, and after giving birth to her precious new babe.  It will be such a blast to learn how her preparations went, how she felt as birth arrived, and how she feels after the experience.

As we head into this week’s episode roundup, one point sticks out to me the most, and it’s what I want to focus on now.  Kelli loved her hospital births.  She enjoyed receiving an epidural, and she didn’t feel traumatized by any of her experiences.  In fact, it seems that the choice to switch to homebirth care was the most difficult of all, because she had no complaints about the hospital! 
This is just a reminder that the simple hospital=bad narrative isn’t the whole story.  Mothers can enjoy that experience and find great empowerment in it.  It’s refreshing to hear a perspective like Kelli, who has no qualms with her previous births, even though she’s doing something different this time.

Like I said before, I’m excited that she’s taking us all on this journey with her, and I can’t wait to see how it all unfolds.

 

Okay my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you for today.  Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag @happyhomebirthpodcast and tell me your favorite takeaway from this episode!  And I’ll see you back here next week.

What surprised you most about your homebirth?  Was it… the way you vocalized during your surges?  Or maybe it was how incredibly accomplished you felt afterward?  Or… was it the number of babies that you gave birth to?

 

This week we’re speaking to Elizabeth Parsons, who really brought the surprise factor to her fourth birth and first homebirth. 

 

Episode Roundup:

Can you imagine that experience?  The shock of thinking you’re pushing out a placenta, but then being handed a second baby?  Absolutely incredible.  As we head into this week’s episode roundup, I wanted to focus on a few things that came up.

  1. I love that Elizabeth brought up the ridiculousness of due dates.  Number one, they’re not even a good average of first time labors.  Number two, why?  Why must we assign this additional stress to our bodies and our babies when they’re simply just trying to grow and work together? 
  2. Elizabeth brought up some great points regarding the immediate postpartum, and just how… not conducive the hospital can be to bonding, and not even conducive to healing or establishing our milk supply— nutrition is so important, and jello just doesn’t really cut it…. You know, unless it’s grass-fed gelatin made at home, which is actually my favorite.
  3. One of my favorite aspects of Elizabeth’s final labor was when her midwife so tenderly read her affirmation and scripture cards to her.  I’m sure it was such an encouraging moment in her labor.
  4. And finally, my friends…birth is a mystery.  Sometimes it unfolds similarly to what we expect, and other times we birth a surprise second breech baby.  No matter how it presents  itself (pun intended), birth is so beautiful, and so transformative.  And mamas, we can do amazing things.
  5. Okay my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you for today.  Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag happyhomebirthpodcast and purqelyparsons and tell me your favorite takeaway from this episode!  And I’ll see you back here next week.

Episode Sponsor: Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

ttps://babytrend.com/ossa and use the code CoverMe20 for your new convertible carseat.

How much influence do we really have on our hormones?  And… how much do our hormones really influence our experience of labor, anyway?

 

And this week we’re speaking with Heather, a mother of two who decided to experiment on herself regarding her ability to influence her hormonal responses.  It’s… fascinating and honestly so exciting.  I can’t wait to jump into her two birth stories.  Before we do— I’d love to thank this week’s reviewer of the week, militarybigfamily.

 

If you’re finding value in this show, would you take a moment to head over to apple podcasts and leave us a *hopefuly* 5 star rating and review?  It’s an easy, free way to help support the show!  And of course, share it with your friends!

 

Also— if you’re finding value in this show, would you take a moment to head over to apple podcasts and leave us a *hopefuly* 5 star rating and review?  It’s an easy, free way to help support the show!  And of course, share it with your friends!

 

 

Episode Roundup:

Wow, I got some gold from this episode and I can only imagine that you did, too!  Let’s head into this week’s episode roundup and let me bring up some of my favorite little nuggets.

  1. 10 centimeters does not always equate to time to push.  It sounded like Heather even had a bit of a feeling that it wasn’t time as she experienced her first labor, but when someone with experience lets you know that “it’s time”…. well, that’s pretty impactful.  I love how Heather expressed that this was a great learning experience for her, and how she entered her second birth feeling more confident when it came to listening to her body and doing things in her own timing.
  2. Related to my first point, Heather was at home for her second birth.  She was able to #givebirthonyourturf, which truly puts you in the power position. This is your space, and the confidence of doing things your way just comes naturally.
  3. I also want to bring up Heather’s need for nobody, as we could put it.  Her uterus, much like my own, doesn’t want the spotlight.  She realized that having an additional student and a birth photographer was just not right for her body in her first labor, and it was causing a bit of stalling, perhaps even anxiety.  Once she cleared the people away, she was able to let her body focus.
  4. Next, heather mentioned one of my favorite concepts.  The balance between control and surrender.  There are so many aspects of preparation that we can control: Where we are, who we’re with, what we learn before entering labor (shout out to happy homebirth academy)…. But at the same time, we’ve got to let go of the outcome.  We’ve got to let go of our desire to control and know exactly how it will play out, because we can’t.  And, honestly, that’s above our pay grade anyway, right?  At some point we must come to the moment of surrender and release, and what a beautiful place that can be.
  5. And finally, let’s end where we began, and with my favorite golden nugget of all.  YOU CAN IMPACT YOUR HORMONES!  Holy moly, this was so insightful.  Heather took it upon herself to begin practicing relaxation and seeing how it influenced her milk letdown.  Isn’t she the coolest scientist in the world?  I’m just overwhelmed at how cool that was.  And… it came in handy, didn’t it?  She entered her second labor knowing how to relax on a deep level, and knowing just how much that relaxation could encourage her body and baby to progress in labor.  I just… wow.  I’m still overwhelmed at how amazing this is.  And how much it makes sense.  Thank you, Heather!  You really blew my mind with that one.

Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag happyhomebirthpodcast and tell me your favorite takeaway from this episode!  

 

Sponsor:

Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

 https://babytrend.com/ossa and use the code CoverMe20

Who do you picture surrounding you when you give birth?  Or….do you picture anyone else besides your spouse?

 

Today we’re speaking with Noelle Kowalski, whom you may know as Noelle Kovary on instagram.  She’s a functional therapy nutritional practitioner, Ayurvedic practitioner holistic health coach, business owner, and… she gave birth to her first baby with her husband and no one else. 

This episode is so amazing and covers some incredible topics like healing from medical injuries, working on your fertility, and of course, giving birth at home.  Take a screenshot of you listening into this episode and tag @happyhomebirthpodcast and @noellekovary and let us know your favorite takeway.

 

 

 

This episode was is sponsored by Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

 

Please remember the opinions of my guest,  and this show is not meant to prescribe or treat- it’s an educational tool, so continue to take empowered responsibility for your health and your family.

 

Noelle is a Functional Therapy Nutritional Practitioner, an Ayurvedic Practitoner, Holistic Health Coach, and she and her husband own an organic, non-toxic beauty company called Forever Healthy Hair.

They also have created online courses that teach people how to heal the metabolism and digestion, and they are currently working on their fertility course.

Her background:
Noelle became very sick around 13/14- diagnosed with a rare kidney disorder and harmed by the HPV vaccine

She had PCOS, Hashimoto’s, Basal Cell skin cancer, and more.  She knew that nutrition needed to be addressed. 

Noelle began working with chiropractors, and then went to school for holistic nutrition and bioenergetic healing. 

She ultimately healed her body to the point where she felt she was in a higher percentage of health than most people.

Lifestyle and herbal allies were used.

This is where her passion comes from: she was mistreated, misdiagnosed and abused within the medical system, and she wanted to give people another route to heal.

 

Specific to healing from HPV Vax:

It took her roughly 10 years to fully recover

The bulk of healing happened within the first couple of years

-Reduced her endotoxin load through diet

-Activated coconut charcoal

-Reduced heavy metals in her body by supporting natural detox pathways

-Supporting thyroid by eating regularly

-Consuming nutrient-dense foods

-Reishi mushroom, ksm-66 ashwaganda, pine pollen

-Adequate minerals through diet and supplementation (magnesium bicarbonate)

-Mitigate Stress Master Mineral Drink

-Shilajit

-Epsom salt baths, vitamin C, and borax

-Red light therapy

-Infrared sauna

-Aviyanga Massage

-Dry brushing

 

Noelle’s pregnancy:

Pretty easy and smooth

Increased her topical dose of progesterone and added B6 and it went away

She’s always wanted to do a homebirth, and having gone through so much difficulty in the medical system throughout her life, she knew the hospital would not be the place for her.

They did interview one midwife, but Noelle felt like she did not have the type of knowledge regarding physiology and nourishing mother/baby

Noelle felt best when she thought about doing her birth alone with just her husband

She and Nick discussed what they would do in each situation and how they would handle each aspect

She was completely unafraid of any “pain” women experience when giving birth, as she’s been through so many unnatural procedures.

What she needed to learn was “what do we do when baby’s born?”  What does a midwife do?  What does the doctor do?

If something went wrong, she knew she would go to the hospital. 

Throughout labor, she was extremely happy that nobody was there because she was so deeply relaxed.

They weighed the pros and cons, and Noelle intuitively knew that doing it on their own would be the most peaceful way to bring their baby into the world— just the two of them.

At one point their son was transverse, and Nick was able to help flip him head down (around 28 weeks)

They did get one ultrasound at 18 weeks

Noelle didn’t tell anyone that she was having a freebirth- she didn’t want anyone else’s worries projected onto her, so she kept it a complete secret.

She woke up one morning and felt that her contractions were not Braxton hicks anymore.  She felt intuitively that the baby was coming soon.

She got the house ready: cleaned the bathroom, set up the bedroom, and got her postpartum kit together.

She ate a lot of nutrient-dense foods, and made some labor-aid.

They did a partial lotus birth, so they got all of the supplies ready for that as well.

By 10pm the contractions got a bit stronger and she felt she’d be entering active labor soon.

At midnight Nick filled up the bath tub and Noelle had a contraction that brought her to her knees.

The contractions were erratic 10 minutes, then 1 minute, all over the place.

1 am- Full on active labor

She had 5 very strong contractions, then said, “I think I don’t want to labor in the tub… I think I want to get out.”  She got out, had a contraction, and said, “Oh no, tub is good!”

She reached down and was able to feel her baby’s head.  She took a deep breath, relaxed her whole body and her body just pushed her baby out.

Her baby was born at 1:23 am- in the amniotic sac!

His eyes were open, looking at her.  She did a quick sweep of his mouth and gave him a breath, then brought him to her chest.  He latched within the first 10 minutes.

She then told Nick she wanted to birth the placenta.  She did that, then he checked to make sure it was intact, which it was.

Noelle washed off her body, and they moved to the bed. 
He didn’t cry at all until they tried to weigh him!

They chose to keep the placenta attached for almost 48 hours, and then they burned it off with a candle. 

Noelle’s postpartum was great- her baby was born in the summer, so they spent every day outside in the back yard in the sun.

Nick cooked and cleaned and was a full support to Noelle.  All she had to do was feed Olek and nourish him.

She ate very nutrient-dense foods as she healed

Her body stopped bleeding after a week, and her uterus shrunk back in only a couple of weeks

She breastfeeds on demand, and they co-sleep, which made for an easier time during the evening.

She increased her calories: Anywhere between 3,000-4,000 for a nursing mother

Noelle discusses how important it is NOT to add exercise early on in postpartum. Both physically and energetically.

Smoked or fresh oysters, beef liver, bone broth, raw milk, raw honey, fresh fruits are all extremely nourishing.  Most are higher in calories, which helps meet the calorie requirements.

 

Postpartum hair loss, postpartum acne: high estrogen, low progesterone.  The way to heal it is to feed your body nutrient-dense foods and heal your thyroid.

 

Fertility tips:

  1. Reduce your toxic load: get rid of toxins in skin care, bedding, makeup and clothing.
  2. Reduce your estrogen load: support your thyroid and liver with adequate protein and carbs (shellfish, beef, beef liver)
  3. Increase your mineral intake: through food and supplementation (our soil is depleted)— magnesium bicarb or glycinate, as well as shilajit resin
  4. Get yourself set up emotionally: The transition from maiden to mother is a shift from the inward to the outward.  Lots of the anxiety and depression can come from the lack of preparation and lack of support
  5. Iron- reducing the iron overload and getting more bioavailable copper
  6. Working on your relationship with your partner.  Fertility can be an emotional blockage as well.

 

She’s working on a fertility course now that will happen in the future, but in the meantime she recommends checking out their “Perfect Thyroid” course, as it will give you a good understanding of the body and metabolism, and much of the information will overlap with fertility.

 

Follow Noelle:

@noellekovary

@foreverhealthyhair

What does it look like to have full confidence in yourself, your body and your baby?  How does this look in the birth setting?

 

This week we’re speaking with Talise Homebirth Queen, who lives up to her name in every way.  She gave birth to all 6 of her babies at home, without pain or fear.  She’s given birth to twins, she’s gone unassisted, and she’s written a book about it: Home is Where the Birth is

Talise brings so much insight and wisdom to today’s conversation, I can’t wait to get started. 

 

This episode was is sponsored by Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

https://babytrend.com/ossa and use the code CoverMe20 

Okay, let’s dive into Talise’s story. Please remember the opinions of my guest,  and this show is not meant to prescribe or treat- it’s an educational tool, so continue to take empowered responsibility for your health and your family.

 

Show Notes

Talise was raised in a homebirth family- she was a breech c-section, but her mother did more research and realized that it wasn’t necessary to have a c-section just because it was a breech baby.

Keep your children and yourself away from the false narrative that birth MUST be painful

“You put in what you get out” when it comes to birth and preparation- She halfway prepared for her first birth, because she didn’t fully understand that you “should” prepare. 

There was lots of screaming, cussing, and it was very dramatic.  She realized that she wanted to have a different experience.

With her second birth, her midwife helped her heal from her first birth— this is highly important, learning to heal from previous birth traumas.

With the second birth, she exercised more and read more affirmations.  The birth went much smoother.

 

With her third birth (twin birth), she did hypnobirthing and visualizations every day. 

She changed her wording

Pain —> Pressure

Contractions —> Waves

She exercised daily, visualized daily, ate well and focused on mental preparation.

Talise encourages women to use their voices to help their babies come down (low tones)

She only had a doula for this birth (not a midwife)

Her doula came in and Talise had her leg up.  Her doula said “Stop!  That’s the baby’s booty!”

 

Baby was born, an hour later, she realized she was still pushing. And suddenly another baby booty came out with two little “chicken legs”

 

Talise always reminds women how important it is to really interview and meet with your doula and midwives and find someone you’re comfortable with.  They hoped to have a specific midwife, but she wasn’t going to be available because her own daughter was going to be giving birth.

They decided to have an unassisted birth.

 

All of her children were there until the very end— she gave a massive roar and all of the kids left! 

 

Once again with this birth, she was incredibly consistent with preparation.

 

For her next birth, she had another unassisted birth again.

 

Talise prepared the MOST for her postpartum to make it easier for everyone.

 

She woke up her husband- he filled the pool

 

She was talking and laughing until her baby was born.

 

Talise said her baby’s name just came to her. 

 

Home is Where the Birth Is Book : https://www.amazon.com/Home-Where-Birth-Stories-Homebirths/dp/1704081637/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=home+is+where+the+birth+is&qid=1624035215&sr=8-2

 

Website: https://www.talisehomebirthqueen.com

 

Episode Roundup:

Isn’t Talise such an encouragement? Her energy and confidence just radiate, and they’ve got me feeling like a homebirth queen, too.  As we head into this week’s episode roundup, here are a few topics that came to mind for me.

  1. What a blessing that Talise’s mom took the initiative to learn and research about birth.  Even though she had a c-section, she raised her daughter to know that she could give birth to her babies safely, vaginally and at home.  I’m so impressed by that, and it’s what I wish for the upcoming generation.
  2. Maybe my favorite quote and concept, Talise said when it comes to birth, “You put in what you get out.”  Doing minimal preparation and just leaving it up to chance may leave you feeling out of control and lost during labor.  But when you take the time to prepare, and Talise is such a great example of this, beautiful things can happen.
  3. Finally, with that preparation… comes confidence.  The ability to know your body, to trust yourself and to take charge of your own experience.  Talise was comfortable giving birth unassisted, understanding the risks and benefits and choosing what was best for her family.  And that’s what I ask of everyone— to make informed decisions for their own family.   What an incredible woman and an incredible story.  Be sure to check out all that Talise has to offer at her website, and go buy that book!  Alright my friends. Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag happyhomebirthpodcast and talisethehomebirthqueen and let us know what takeaway or strength you drew from this episode!  Okay my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll see you back here next week.

Trauma— how does trauma of all types impact or influence your pregnancy, labor and postpartum?

 

Today’s episode is beautiful, but very serious.  We’re speaking with Midon, who has experienced a long journey of learning about early childhood traumas, and how they greatly impacted her most recent birth.  We’re going to share about the importance of talking about these traumas, not leaving them unattended to fester, which can feel like the easier path.  Now, I always do my best to be up front regarding difficult content so that you can make the choice to listen now, or perhaps save it for later when you feel more prepared or in a safer mental place.  This is very likely an episode that you’ll want to listen to with ear buds if you’ve got young ears around. Starting now, because I’m going to tell you what’s coming.  We will bring up some very triggering topics including growing up in a cult, sexual assault and mention of rape, birth assault and trauma, and alienation from family members.  I know it sounds heavy, and it is, but there is light at the end of the tunnel, and Midon is an absolute joy to speak with.  You’re going to gain so much from what she shares about herself and several clients who agreed to let her share bits of their stories, and even if you don’t relate directly to her experiences, this story has given me a whole new compassionate lens for the experiences of others. 

 

Let’s thank our reviewer of the week, Blessed Momma 0525

 

And finally, before we head in, here’s something really exciting: This episode was is sponsored by Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

 

I opted to skip the newborn carseat with my second daughter, and this carseat is so unique in that it addresses the number one complaint by experienced mothers: Sun in your baby's eyes. The Cover Me seat is able to do this with its integrated canopy that offers height adjustability, ratcheting coverage, and side sun protection.  The cover me has a usage rating from 4-100 lbs, so you can install it for your infant and adjust it as your child grows from rear facing to forward facing all the way up to belt positioning booster.  It’s got a recline system that allows your child to find a comfortable position and it’s designed to take up a limited amount of space even in the rear-facing position.  And it’s got some super cool features that help make life easier for mom and kiddo, including a no-twist harness indicator, a no-rethread harness, and a comfort cabin, which is its multi-layered padding system, letting your baby or child feel snug and secure.  So go to https://babytrend.com/ossa and use the code CoverMe20 for your new convertible carseat.

 

Show Notes

Midon was born into a cult in 1983 in Missour- her great grandfather was the Patriarch

Had barely any memories before the age of 10

She lived in 2 cults, lived there until 18- met her husband and was married 4 months later

Midon became pregnant 1.5 years later

She’d been told her whole life she’d never have children- because of a bicycle accident (that she had no memory of)

She wanted a midwife, but ended up with an OB in the hospital- it was an incredibly traumatic birth- forceps, couldn’t stand up for 9 weeks, broke her tailbone

The nurse forced her to keep her eyes open

6 months later she became pregnant and husband ok’d homebirth

When she left the cult, she was shunned by her family

Her family left the cult, her mom contacted her and wanted to be there- her body held baby in until her mother left

It was a quick, 6 hour birth- her midwife was very compassionate

She had a great third birth

4th- longer labor- it was a stressful time of life- she wonders how much that impacted her

In her 4th pregnancy she began having pelvic issues

Her husband then had a vasectomy

Midon was legally adopted as an adult

They had the vasectomy reversed- Midon became pregnant immediately after

She had to find a new midwife- it was the fastest birth yet, 4 hours

She became pregnant again- lost the baby @ 12 weeks

Finally called her biological brother and he confirmed a lot of her “dreams”— that they were real events

-7th pregnancy: Lots of pelvic pain began to come up- couldn’t sleep

Had preterm labor @ 35 weeks, but they were able to stop the labor and he stayed in until 40.6

It was the roughest labor she had ever had

She was in so much pain, but she didn’t say anything- she thought she was screaming out loud, but she never did.  It made her wonder, “why does this happen?”

People with trauma don’t know how to speak

-3m pp- broke down to her adopted mom

-Interview with pelvic floor specialist- asked lots of questions that made Midon begin to question her childhood “bicycle” accident.

Healing Trauma Mamas

 

Episode Roundup:

Wasn’t that such an amazing story?  Midon’s still on her journey to healing, and I highly encourage anyone who recognizes a need to heal trauma to join her in the new community she’s created.

As we head into this week’s episode roundup, I have a few thoughts I’d like to discuss

 

  1. We need to keep our eyes out for obstetric abuse and report it when we see it.  Midon experienced deep birth trauma at the hands of an abusive nurse and OB team, and this my friends is why we have such abysmal outcomes compared to other countries.  When situations like this are allowed to unfold in the hospital setting, when there is no care for the people you’re supposed to be serving…. This leads to nothing good.  If you hear stories like this from your friends, perhaps you can encourage them to reach out and report it.  We have to be the ones demanding change.
  2. It was very eye-opening to hear how Midon became aware of her trauma over time.  As care providers, you may assume that your clients know if they’ve experienced some sort of deep trauma, but these may be the ones who know the least, as their minds do their best to protect them.  This was a great reminder for me.  I also appreciate the way that Midon expressed her inability to express— she couldn’t speak, and even when she thought she was speaking, screaming even in labor, she wasn’t.  This being the case, we must be vigilant, as so many midwives are, to continue the deep observational skills that midwives are so good at.
  3. Finally, I want to end on the positive note— that there is help.  There are others who have walked this road, if you’re walking through past traumas, and there are so many who would love to walk it with you.  You don’t have to be alone, and you don’t have to be silent.  Finding a counselor or therapist who understands trauma, and even just finding the strength over time to open up to those that you love will hopefully not only work on your own healing process, but also give others the courage to heal, too.  Be sure to look into Midon’s group Healing Trauma Mamas for additional community.

 

Thank you Midon for your willingness to share and expose the difficulty through which you’ve walked.  It was such a blessing to have you on the podcast.

 

Alright my friends. Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag happyhomebirthpodcast and let us know what takeaway or strength you drew from this episode!  Okay my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll see you back here next week.

 

Take Your Homebirth Education to the Next Level:

Top 8 Essential Homebirth Resources

Homebirth Mythbusters Masterclass

Happy Homebirth Academy

Do words really matter?  I mean, you’ve got to give birth one way or another— so is the language that’s used around your experience actually important?

This week we’ll be speaking to Frankie Sena, a mama of two and graduate of Happy Homebirth Academy.  She had two very different perceptions of feeling during her experiences of giving birth, and we’re going to hear what influenced that.

 

This episode was is sponsored by Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

I opted to skip the newborn carseat with my second daughter, and this carseat is so unique in that it addresses the number one complaint by experienced mothers: Sun in your baby's eyes. The Cover Me seat is able to do this with its integrated canopy that offers height adjustability, ratcheting coverage, and side sun protection.  The cover me has a usage rating from 4-100 lbs, so you can install it for your infant and adjust it as your child grows from rear facing to forward facing all the way up to belt positioning booster.  It’s got a recline system that allows your child to find a comfortable position and it’s designed to take up a limited amount of space even in the rear-facing position.  And it’s got some super cool features that help make life easier for mom and kiddo, including a no-twist harness indicator, a no-rethread harness, and a comfort cabin, which is its multi-layered padding system, letting your baby or child feel snug and secure.  So go to https://babytrend.com/ossa and use the code CoverMe20 for your new convertible carseat.

 

 

 

Episode Roundup:

What an amazing story.  I love getting to follow back up with graduates of Happy Homebirth Academy, so this was such a special interview for me.  As we head into this week’s episode roundup, a few points really caught my eye.

 

  1. I loved Frankie’s discussion of placenta encapsulation.  I feel like it’s such a perfect example of the “crunchy” lifestyle, and even the homebirth experience.  When you hear about it for the first time, you can have a knee-jerk reaction of, “oh my gosh, no!”  And then… it grows on you.  And suddenly you’re asking for the placenta girl’s info, or asking for that midwife’s number….  Sometimes it can be hard to release the mainstream point of view, but then… oh man, the other side can be so enjoyable and helpful. 
  2. Let’s talk about labor thoughts.  Frankie shared with us some of the very specific thoughts that she had that turned out not to be true:  I’m 7 cm which means I’m going to have to walk the parking lot, I definitely have a cervical lip…. I imagine that so many of you can relate to this!  You feel something certainly in your bones in labor that is… come to find out, pretty off base.  I was confident that I had a shoulder dystocia with my first daughter and that my midwife had to reach her arm up inside to pull her out…. That was decidedly not true.  Remember to approach these things gently and with a sense of humor later— our brains are in a whole different place in labor, and they’re doing their best!  It can be somewhat amusing to look back and think of the interesting jumps they made while navigating labor
  3. I want to bring up how well Frankie and her husband worked together.  They took the time to prepare with one another inside of Happy Homebirth Academy— which is certainly my recommendation— to have your husband involved with childbirth education— and the pregnancy was “theirs” together.  What a beautiful, critical outlook that can magnetize you to one another.
  4. Finally, let’s end where we began.  WORDS.  MATTER.  And even more, mindset is so important.  Frankie had endured a fear-mongering hospital birth class that ensured her of the deep pain she would experience during labor, and her midwife discussed the pain of the ring of fire right before she experienced it— because Frankie hadn’t yet tapped into the power of her mindset, these words were highly influential on her experience.  Now, I do believe the good news is that once your mindset is fixed and prepared, those words can bounce off you much easier.  But, still, the preference is certainly positive words combined with a fortified positive mindset.  If this sounds good to you, make sure you check out Happy Homebirth Academy.

 

Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag happyhomebirthpodcast and tell me your favorite takeaway from this episode!  Okay my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll see you back here next week.

]

What happens when you’ve desired and planned for a homebirth for a decade… but then you’re faced with a long, intense exhausting labor?  How do you cope with what you’ve wanted, yet what you’re experiencing? 

 

This week we’re speaking with Caitlin Ackermann, who met her midwife in her high school health class.  She’s experienced two vastly different births, and she’s going to share them both with us today.  Caitlin’s stories show the two extremes of labor, so you know there will be so much to glean from this one.

Let’s take a moment to thank our reviewer of the week, ilovepodcastsrrkkrr, who writes “Great for all expecting parents!”

This is a fantastic podcast and goes through lots of different pregnancy and labor/birth stories.  Very empowering and educational at the same time.  Thanks so much ilovepodcastsrrkkrr, I’d love to send you a happy homebirth podcast sticker, so email me at katelyn@myhappyhomebirth.com

 

And of course, if you are loving this show, would you go show some love on apple podcasts?  It’s a free, relatively easy way to support the mission behind Happy Homebirth and get this show into the ears of the mothers who need it. 

 

And finally, before we head in, here’s something really exciting: This episode was is sponsored by Baby Trend andThe Cover Me 4-in-1 Convertible car seat

 

I opted to skip the newborn carseat with my second daughter, and this carseat is so unique in that it addresses the number one complaint by experienced mothers: Sun in your baby's eyes. The Cover Me seat is able to do this with its integrated canopy that offers height adjustability, ratcheting coverage, and side sun protection.  The cover me has a usage rating from 4-100 lbs, so you can install it for your infant and adjust it as your child grows from rear facing to forward facing all the way up to belt positioning booster.  It’s got a recline system that allows your child to find a comfortable position and it’s designed to take up a limited amount of space even in the rear-facing position.  And it’s got some super cool features that help make life easier for mom and kiddo, including a no-twist harness indicator, a no-rethread harness, and a comfort cabin, which is its multi-layered padding system, letting your baby or child feel snug and secure.  So go to https://babytrend.com/ossa and use the code CoverMe20 for your new convertible carseat.

 

Alright, let’s jump in.  Please remember the opinions of my guest,  and this show is not meant to prescribe or treat- it’s an educational tool, so continue to take empowered responsibility for your health and your family.

 

Show Notes

  • Growing up, she loved the book “A Child is Born” and wanted to be a “baby doctor.”
  • In high school, her best friend’s mom had homebirths
  • In health class growing up, her health teacher had a midwife come speak.  She felt the midwife was incredibly calm and nurturing— She knew immediately she wanted her to be her midwife one day.
  • In college she watched The Business of Being Born and was completely on board
  • Her husband, whom she met at 17, was always on board as well.
  • They became pregnant immediately after beginning to try, which was unexpected for Caitlin. 
  • She was so excited to finally call her midwife, Bonnie!
  • She loved the flexibility of her midwives.  She doesn’t eat white sugar, so her midwives allowed her to do gestational diabetes testing by eating a pancake breakfast with the correct amount of maple syrup
  • When she was 6 months pregnant, she had severe back pain for 6 weeks that made her think she’d never want to have children again. Luckily it did go away.
  • She was due 10 days before her best friend’s wedding- she made it to the wedding! 
  • The next morning, she had a membrane sweep, which she felt was the culmination of midwifery care: It was done comfortably and gently at her midwife’s.
  • The night she went into labor, she was awake until 2 am— she decided to take a Tylenol PM to get some sleep… and then at 3am labor began
  • “I wanted to be prepared for everything but not set on anything”
  • She began throwing up at 5am (after 2 hours of labor)
  • Caitlin labored in the tub for 8 hours- her body stopped regulating temperature, so she got out.
  • At 1 pm, her midwives came and she was 6 cm
  • At 5pm she was feeling very tired
  • By 7 pm the midwives mentioned the baby having a heart arrhythmia.  They chose to wait 15 minutes to see if it went away or to transport
  • She honestly wanted to transport— she was exhausted by that point.  But her husband reminded her that she wanted this homebirth, and he asked her to take it hour by hour.  She needed the reminder that she wanted it and could do it. 
  • At midnight she was 10 centimeters, she got in the shower, squatted and gently pushed, but he wouldn’t budge
  • Suddenly, everything changed, his head came down, and he was out within 2 pushes
  • This baby was born with a tongue tie, and breastfeeding was very painful.  Her midwife caught it immediately and clipped it, but it was still very difficult
  •  

 

 

 

 

Episode Roundup

If you’re in Vermont, you’re definitely going to want to hire Caitlin to be your doula, right?  She’s experienced so much, and she is so insightful.  In today’s episode roundup I’d love to discuss a few of the aspects that she so brilliantly brought up.

 

  1. It was so much fun hearing how Caitlin and her midwives chose to replace the traditional glucose test with a maple syrup test.  Talk about individuality of care.  And that’s what I love, and what I bet you love too, about the midwives model.  This is your pregnancy, your birth and your baby.  In the ideal midwife client relationship, You make the decisions, and your midwives support you.  They tailor their care to you.  I love that Caitlin felt empowered in her second pregnancy to do even less testing and be more lowkey.  Not because there’s anything wrong with wanting tests— if you do, that’s great!— But because she clearly felt the confidence and power to choose for herself.  And that’s what I want for all of you.
  2. Favorite quote award goes to:  I wanted to be prepared for everything, but not set on anything.  And this…. This is why Caitlin is going to make such an incredible birth worker.  This is wisdom, my friends.  Take note of it.  Rigidity in birth can be cause for dashed dreams and sadness, even when everything goes right to the outside world.  This concept— of being prepared for it all, but being accepting of what’s to come— this is it.  This is what it’s all about.  If you can adopt this frame of mind, you can give your birth the credit it is due, no matter how it unfolds.  That’s not to say that you have to think it was perfect when it was hard— obviously, Caitlin is a great example of that.  But I feel strongly that this attitude can greatly cut down on the feelings of “my birth wasn’t good enough because…”. Thank you, Caitlin, for putting it so eloquently.
  3. I also want to bring up what Caitlin mentioned about her postpartum.  It was hard having visitors.  Gosh, it can be so tough turning people away, especially with your first baby.  You’re proud, and you know your well-meaning friends and family want to see this sweet new life.  But when you’re in the throes of learning your newborn and learning the skill of breastfeeding, it can be all too much.  Inside of Happy Homebirth Academy we talk about this in depth— setting those boundaries prenatally so that you already have a plan to stick to postpartum.  I was the same as Caitlin— It took me learning through experience the importance of being alone as a family in those first special days and weeks.  I pray you can learn through our experiences, those of you who are preparing for your first— and set the boundaries the first time.  You won’t regret it!
  4. And finally, let’s end on the reminder that sometimes things go “wrong”, even at home.  Caitlin’s second son took 7 minutes to really perk up and come around after birth.  But Caitlin, when sharing this part of the story, was calm.  She was calm in the moment and felt confident in her team.  This speaks to two things: 1. The fact that midwives are skilled workers and have the necessary techniques to handle these types of situations and 2. Caitlin did a wonderful job at selecting her midwives.  Women she trusted and had great confidence in.  This is so important.  Not every midwife is for you, and it’s important to feel confident in both your midwife’s skills and demeanor.

Okay, my friends.  What a beautiful episode.  I’m going to go finish my coffee with maple syrup… and that’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll see you back here next week. 

When I say metabolism you say….what? Really, what comes to mind?  Skinny teenagers and being able to gorge on whatever you want with no consequences to your pant size? Or… that thing that just totally quits on you once you have a baby?

 

Hey there, episode 126

 

Today we are speaking with two women who I stumbled across recently (shout out to my bff Emily), and who in the span of just a few months have absolutely changed my health for the better.  Kori Meloy and Fallon Lee are the two metabolism-loving women behind the new podcast, Freely Rooted.  They’re incredible resources on Instagram as well, so I know you’ll be excited to follow along.  Even better?  Fallon and Kori both have experience in the homebirth, with Fallon having a successful HBAC during her third birth, and Kori currently planning for her HBAC.  This episode is basically a 2-Act performance, with birth in the front and metabolism in the back.  I can’t wait to share all of this incredible inform BUT… I do want to warn you— some of what we discuss regarding your metabolism may feel… uncomfortable… even counter-intuitive if you’ve been running in some of the same health circles I have.  All I ask is that you bring an open, curious mind.  Either way, this episode is sure to be a blast.

 

Before we get started   though, I’d love to take a moment to thank our reviewer of the week, EllieAustin.  And Ellie’s review was actually specific to our most recent HBAC episode, episode 123 with Julie.  Ellie says, I relate!

 

Thank you so much for this review, EllieAustin.  If you’ll e-mail me at I’d love to send you a happy homebirth podcast sticker

And hey, If you’re loving the show, would you hop on over to apple podcasts to leave a quick *hopefully* 5 star rating, and even a review?  I can’t tell you how helpful it is in getting this show into the ears of new listeners who will benefit.

 

Okay, let’s waste no more time.  Please remember,,, and this show is not meant to prescribe or treat- it’s an educational tool, so continue to take empowered responsibility for your health and your family.

 

With this acute focus of our imbalances, we are missing the bigger picture-  Our imbalances and our symptoms showing up in the first place, are just a result of a broken metabolism.

 

Thriving metabolsim:

Warm hands and feet

Waking temp near 97.8

Resting pulse around 75-95

Regular, comfortable BMs

Shiny, strong hair and nails

Strong, healthy sex drive

Symptomless period

Morning hunger

Good energy throughout the day (no 2-3pm crashes)

Stable mood

Fast wound healing

Sleeping through the night (excluding children waking you up!)

Seamless transition into menopause

 

Trashed Metabolism:

Freezing

Resting pulse is slow

Irregular BMs

Miserable PMS & period

Mood dysregulation

Losing hair

Waking up to pee in the night

Lack of hunger

 

Pregnancy and Postpartum are a state of stress.  When stress elevates, it decreases thyroid function and metabolism.  So what do we do to mitigate this stress?

 

Simple nutrition and lifestyle changes that will support the metabolism to reduce the stress hormones.

 

Metabolic eating is looking at the cell function of the body and asking our bodies what they need in order to thrive— and then eating that way.

 

We can force our bodies to live off of whatever… but it comes at a cost.  Often times, the cost is living off stress hormones.

 

When I nourish myself, I nourish my family with love.

 

Tips:

  1. Eat Early (within 30-60 minutes of waking)
  2. Mitigate Stressors of all kinds
  3. Eat often
  4. Eat Enough

 

Find Kori and Fallon at:

 

The Freely Rooted Podcast

 

Kori’s Instagram

Kori’s Course

 

Fallon’s Instagram

Fallon’s Website

 

Episode Roundup

I’m still so blown away by this episode, I don’t know HOW I’m supposed to do an episode roundup.  I’m almost feeling like a slow clap and fade to music would be better, but I’m going to give it a shot!

Let’s cover some of the topics that truly stuck out:

  1. Fallon mentions how her homebirth was not picture perfect.  It required an episiotomy, which is indeed such a rare necessity, but very clearly a true one in this case, and thank goodness for a skilled and competent midwife who could perform this conservatively and without requiring any type of transport.  It’s so important to remember that we can control how we prepare for birth, but we cannot control how it unfolds.  Balancing our ability to prepare with our ability to surrender is so important.
  2. When considering Kori’s story, I think what sticks out to me most is the concept of responsibility.  Kori recognized that during her first birth, she gave her midwife the responsibility and power of… being in charge of the birth.  But now?  She’s had such a massive mindset shift, and she recognizes that she’s driving the bus— If you’re inside of happy homebirth academy, you know that’s basically my running mantra.  This is your birth, my friend.  Nobody else’s. Embrace that beautiful responsibility for the God-given gift that it is.
  3. Trauma— it can influence so many aspects of our life: Our health, our births, our relationships.  Learning to unpack our baggage and accessing the tools necessary to do so is of so much importance, and it’s a gift to not only ourselves, but our entire families, including the babies we’re growing and raising… especially them.
  4. And finally, the metabolism.  It’s not just some thing that allows kids to eat whatever they want.  It’s how our body is functioning on a cellular level.  I’m going to be honest, I was so uncomfortable with the idea that maybe my body wasn’t thriving off of starvation, and maybe I DID need to add some previously off-limits foods to my diet.  But as mothers and mothers to be, our bodies are doing and will do amazing things.  They deserve to be nourished and nurtured.  And if it takes stepping out of my comfort zone to do it, so be it. 

 

So there you have it, my friends.  I know this was a lot, and I imagine some of you are probably thinking this is all crazy talk.  I promise, I get it.  Go check out the Freely Rooted Podcast and Fallon and Kori’s work and just see what you find. 

 

 

Before you hop off, would you take a screenshot of this episode and share it on your instagram stories?  Tag happyhomebirthpodcast and tell me your favorite takeaway from this episode!  Okay my friends, that’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll see you back here next week.

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