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.

First births are always long and hard.  Period.  Right?  Or….

This week we’re speaking with Kelsea, a precious mama of two, who surprised herself and her birth team with her first labor.  We’ll dig into both of her beautiful experiences.

 

Episode Roundup

  1. When Kelsea broke the news that she was having a homebirth to her OB, her OB said, “we always see unsuccessful homebirth attempts.”  Well, duh, doctor.  You certainly don’t see the successful ones… they’re…. Not at the hospital.  I just want to use this as a reminder to you.  If you’re receiving dual care, your OB likely doesn’t have any experience with successful homebirths.  He or she likely has no idea how many home births are happening successfully in their very own city all the time.  So be sure to take their perspective with a grain, of salt.
  2. Kelsea’s explanation of Fetal Ejection Reflex with both of her births was just so perfect.  She recollects to how her body just forcefully pushed on it’s own.  She couldn’t stop the pushing.  Instead, she could focus on concentrating and on her breathing.  Remember this.  Your body knows how to push.  It’ll let you know when it’s time to do that.  You can focus on the breathing and let those amazingly powerful muscles do their thing.
  3. And finally, remember that you may need to ask for help postpartum.  There’s absolutely zero shame in the struggle.  Whether it’s your first or fifth child, the transition and addition of a new member to the family, along with the recalibration of your hormones, may lead to some feelings of stress or depression.  Please reach out.  Share this with your family, share it with your midwife- make sure that you’re getting the love and care that you need.

Resources:

Happy Homebirth Academy

The Homebirth Collective- Waitlist

Free Homebirth Essentials Checklist

Let’s say you’re a birth expert- you’ve been working with pregnant mothers for years, and you’re finally having the homebirth of your dreams.  Is firm education enough, or will there possibly be unexpected tests in the emotional and mental aspects of birth?

This week we’re speaking with the marvelous Dr. Courtney Kahla.  Dr. Courtney is a nervous system centered chiropractor specializing in families. She is the owner of Our Well House: a multidisciplinary wellness center in Dallas, TX. Her mission is to encourage others to experience freedom in their physical, mental, and spiritual health. She is passionate about empowering others to take control of their health by living a lifestyle that honors their God-given innate ability to heal.

 

We’re going to spend part of this episode discussing chiropractic care, and then the rest diving deep into Dr. Courtney’s own homebirth journey.  And wow, you’re in for so much wisdom sprinkled throughout her story.

 

One theme we discuss in Dr. Kahla’s story is the need for emotional and mental preparation when it comes to homebirth, beyond the basics of childbirth education.  With that in mind, I want to invite you to join me as you prepare for your own empowering homebirth experience.  Let’s use the unbelievably transformative time of pregnancy as a catalyst into the most incredible motherhood journey.  How?  Join me inside of Happy Homebirth Academy, where preparing for your homebirth is both thorough and joyful.  Learn to comfortably step into your role as the responsible, intuitive mother that you are, and hone those lifelong skills while we educate you on all aspects of midwifery care, physiological birth, and preparing your heart and home.  We cover the physical, yes, but we also go deep into the importance of emotional and mental preparation, all while inviting your spouse to be deeply involved and connected from pregnancy, through labor and on into the blissful postpartum period.  You ready to transform?  Head to myhappyhomebirth.com/hha to get started today.

 

As always, please remember that the opinions of my guest may not necessarily reflect my own and vice versa, and this show is not medical advice, it’s an educational tool, so continue to take empowered responsibility for yourself and your family.

 

Episode Roundup:

  1. I loved the way that Dr. Courtney approached the selection of her care provider.  Yes, there were a number of providers in her area that she liked and trusted, but she knew that she needed someone who was going to be comfortable with the informed decisions she was planning to make during her pregnancy and labor.  She knew the right questions to ask.  “What would cause me to risk out of care with you?  What procedures would you be uncomfortable with me declining?”  Knowing what you want in a care provider before you walk in for the interview makes this so much easier.  Make sure you check out episodes 157 and 159 if you’re looking for more specific help in this area.  I’ll link those below.
  2. I really appreciate the discussion of how vulnerable we are to ideas in labor.  Dr. Kahla knew she wanted to fully listen to her body, but when her midwife gave her the very loving tip of giving a few pushes if she wanted— Dr. Courtney did, even though outside of labor she had adamantly wanted to experience Fetal Ejection Reflex on her own.  Listen, midwives are human and like Dr. Courtney said, this was totally well-intentioned.  But it does go to show us that nobody outside of your body can feel what’s going on inside of your body as well as you can— This is a great lesson for all of us to learn from.  If your midwife gives you advice, it can be really easy to just go along with it— of course—we trust them— but remember to trust yourself, too.  Listen to the advice, but then try to take a moment before you accept it just because you think that’s what you’re supposed to do.
  3. And finally, wow.  Labor can be so, so mental.  Dr. Courtney, the mother that her midwife said she had ZERO worries about desiring to transfer because of her endurance and grit, got to a vulnerable place where she needed her team’s support and reminder that she could, in fact, do this thing.  And do it, she did. 

Resources:

Happy Homebirth Academy

Episode: Communicating With Your Birth Team About Expectations and Desires

Episode: When Your Midwife Choices are Limited

Free Homebirth Essentials Clickable List

Waitlist for The Homebirth Collective

Dr. Courtney's Instagram

Dr. Courtney's website

 

How do we process birth when we don’t experience the outcome we intended?  How do we manage changing our plans and accepting what comes to us during the wild and uncontrollable ride that is birth? 

This week we’re speaking with Danielle, accompanied by her doula Tracey.  Danielle was raised in a homebirth family, so naturally, she was planning her own.  We’ll listen to how her story unfolded and how she’s processing through it all now on the other side.  I always like to give a heads up when the content of an episode may be especially difficult.  This is certainly an episode where things go awry, and if you’re nearing the end of your pregnancy and feel that this isn’t the right time to listen, please take that into consideration.  However, these are, of course, real examples of birth, and gosh, birth is sacred no matter how it happens.  I’m grateful that Danielle is willing to share her experience with us today. 

 

Episode Roundup

  1. Danielle’s midwife wasn’t her savior, and yours isn’t yours, either.  Hopefully your midwife will support you in the way that you want to be supported, but even so, birth is still ultimately your responsibility.  Danielle had to decide what she wanted in regards to her birth— did she want to stay home and continue to attempt labor there, or did she want to transport?  Ultimately, she made the decision that she was most comfortable with, knowing that no one else could make it for her.
  2. The events that occurred throughout her birth experience were unfavorable to her desires, to put it lightly.  But because of the way that she has chosen to perceive her experience, Danielle has been able to integrate her story into her motherhood journey in a way that brings positivity and success.  Remember, it’s impossible for us to control every outcome.  What’s totally possible, though, is how we perceive the experience and how we choose to integrate it.  That doesn’t mean that it’s easy, and you absolutely may need help, and grief over not experiencing what you desired is a very normal reaction.  But long term suffering over something that’s done— remaining in the victim state— it isn’t going to easily build joy.  I love the way that Danielle has approached her story and the way that she’s choosing to heal.  Because it is, in fact, an active choice.
  3. Finally, I want you to know that if your story is like Danielle’s.  If you planned and prepared for a homebirth, yet your experience led you to a different outcome, this community is still for you and here for you.  You are loved and you are still an integral part of the Happy Homebirth and Homebirth in general, community.  Thank you for sharing with us. 

Resources

Happy Homebirth Academy

Waitlist for The Homebirth Collective

What do you do when your mainstream care provider won’t listen to what it is that you need?  When you KNOW something isn’t right, but they totally blow you off? 

 

This week we’re speaking to Michelle Rodas, who had to go to battle with her care providers in order to keep her baby safe.  We’ll hear how she advocated for her child in utero and what she did to avoid further disruptions later on in her pregnancy, which, believe it or not led her to to out-of hospital midwifery.

 

Episode Roundup

 

Did you get goosebumps?  I totally did when Michelle shared how she did what she had to do to get progesterone for her baby, and seemingly just in time.  As we head into this week’s episode round up, you can bet your bottom dollar that’s what we’re going to discuss.

 

  1. Michelle took it upon herself to do research and see what it was that she needed.  She took on additional financial responsibility through testing, knowing that the safety of her baby could very well be on the line.  Even when her OBs spoke down to her and acted as though her desires were silly and unnecessary, she continued.  This is huge, and it leads me to the most important thing you can ever know:  NOBODY knows your body and your baby like you know your body and baby.  And as harsh as it sounds, nobody is going to care about your body and your baby as much as you will.  So don’t bow down to people simply because they have the air quotes authority of a white coat.  You’re an intelligent human being and you can advocate for what your baby needs.  And if your intuition and prior experiences are telling you that something may be off, listen to that.  And act- even if you think others might call you silly or think you’re wrong.  Who. Cares.  Michelle is snuggling her baby right now, and I doubt she gives a flying flip about what her OB thinks about progesterone. 

Okay, my friends.  What an incredible episode.  It’s all I’ve got for you for now, and I’ll see you back here next week.

 

Resources:

The Homebirth Collective

Happy Homebirth Academy

 

What do you do when you’re sold on the idea of homebirth, but your area has either no midwives or no midwives that you like?

 

Resources

Believe In Midwifery Episode (sustainable midwifery)

https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/episode23/

 

Shared Decision Making (book)

https://www.amazon.com/Shared-Decision-Making-Bring-Mothers/dp/B089M59Z35/ref=sr_1_2?crid=2TAOKXFRMHUYP&keywords=shared+decision+making&qid=1644082050&sprefix=shared+decision+making%2Caps%2C110&sr=8-2

 

Shared Decision Making Episode

https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/episode84/

 

Airbnb Homebirth

https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/episode112/

 

Shayla’s Birth

https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/episode40/

 

Dr. Sarah Birth Uprising

https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/episode144/

 

Freebirth Resources (Curated by my amazing friend, Sophia- @sage.fertility)

 

Yolande Norris Clark’s website: https://freebirth.ca/

Freebirth Society: https://www.freebirthsociety.com/

Fertility and Freebirth with Noelle Kowalski https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/episode131/

The Complete Guide to Freebirth Course (extremely thorough): https://www.freebirthsocietycourses.com/a/24099/zgzoH6FJ (btw this is my  affiliate link as an RBK)

Freebirth Society Podcast: https://www.freebirthsociety.com/blogs/the-free-birth-podcast  

Gestational Diabetes, GBS, Ultrasound Technology, and RH Negative: A New Perspective https://www.freebirthsociety.com/blogs/the-free-birth-podcast/gestational-diabetes-gbs-ultrasound-technology-and-rh-negative-a-new-perspective?_pos=2&_sid=f8289d5c1&_ss=r

Unpacking Ultrasound With Yolande Clark https://www.freebirthsociety.com/blogs/the-free-birth-podcast/unpacking-ultrasound-with-yolande-clark?_pos=1&_sid=604819694&_ss=r

The Ecstatic Hormonal High of Childbearing - Dr. Sarah Buckley #35

Pain in Labour: Your hormones are your helpers https://sarahbuckley.com/pain-in-labour-your-hormones-are-your-helpers/

The Anterior Cervical Lip: how to ruin a perfectly good birth

Vaginal examinations: a symptom of a cervical-centric birth culture

Pushing: leave it to the experts

Unassisted Family HOME BIRTH | Natural + Positive Free Birth https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiSpXcFUVwI

Unassisted Home Water Birth | POSITIVE NATURAL BIRTH + surprise gender https://youtu.be/AEKWv4sVBdo

HOME BIRTH: gentle, Natural FAMILY WATER BIRTH https://youtu.be/rOeNa0NCc44

DIY Placenta Preparation https://youtu.be/g3pi_8JhkaQ

Rethinking the Pushing Stage, with Whapio https://birthful.com/podcast-pushing-stage/ (Also awesome resource list in this podcast description)

Odent Fetus ejection reflex https://www.wombecology.com/home/fetus-ejection-reflex

Small Magic Birth Instagram (priceless pelvic health and freebirth information) https://www.instagram.com/smallmagicbirth/

Wild Sage Womb DIY Prenatal Wellness Journal https://www.wildsagewomb.com/offerings/p/diy-prenatal-wellness-journal

Wild Sage Womb Birth Vision Workbook https://www.wildsagewomb.com/offerings/p/birth-vision-workbook

Once you’ve had 6 babies, 4 of which were at home— you pretty much know everything there is to know about birth, right?

 

This week we’re speaking with Lisa Bass of Farmhouse on Boone to hear all about her most recent birth.  Lisa shares some of the new insights she gained during this pregnancy and labor preparation, and sheds tons of wisdom throughout her explanation of how she began having home births in the first place.  Lisa is a wealth of wisdom when it comes to homemaking and wholesome living, and it’s such a joy to have her on today’s podcast episode. 

 

Episode Roundup:

  1. Relaxation is the key, and it looks different for everyone.  What has helped you cope during labor?  For some, it’s touch, it’s your spouse holding your hand, it’s the encouraging words of a doula.  For others, it’s quiet.  Complete calm, and being alone to focus inward.  So many stories are shared where there’s lots of interaction, I’m glad to hear Lisa share how for her, less is more.
  2. I loved the encouragement that Lisa gave regarding labor and motherhood in general:  The empowering recognition that you CAN do it.  You can do the research, you can advocate for yourself and your family… you don’t need a fancy degree to dig in and understand what’s going on… you CAN make informed decisions for your family.
  3. And finally, it doesn’t matter whether it’s your first or fifteenth birth, there’s always something new to learn.  Lisa spent several weeks leading up to her birth listening to positive birth stories, and even gained new insight regarding transition.  And during this labor, she was able to relax through the pressure- something she’d never been able to do before.

Resources:

Happy Homebirth Academy

Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way

Farmhouse on Boone

How do we make sure that we’re on the same page with our midwife?

  1. Begin with open communication before you even hire your midwife
  2. Make sure that your preferences of how your midwife will operate and interact match with what she is willing to provide
  3. Be certain that YOU know what You want in a care provider
  4. Are the two parties in agreement?
  5. Feel comfortable asking questions as you come from a place of initial agreement an understanding
  6. Be careful adding additional social checkmarks to your list of needs.  Your midwife does not have to be your bestie
  7. Do not expect your midwife to bear the weight of connection.  If you want connection, you must be open and vulnerable.

 

Resources:

Join the Homebirth Mom Panel

Happy Homebirth Academy

Perfect Supplements use the code HOMEBIRTH for 10% off

When you picture homebirth mothers, what image comes to mind?  Do you imagine the totally crunchy, completely alternative health mom who’s making her own bone broth and sourdough?  Although I may be "that" mother, one thing I love about the homebirth community is that, although we often have much in common, this group is diverse and brings many viewpoints.  For example, today we’ll be speaking with Gabby and Daniel, a homebirth family who self-describes as “stale crunchy”.  So kind of crunchy, kind of not.  It’ll be so great to hear how they approached their first homebirth after two hospital births.

 

Episode Roundup:

  1. I appreciated how Gabby and Daniel were considerate of the feelings of their two sons when it came to the involvement in the birth process.  They didn’t force their involvement, but met each son where he was and allowed home to be involved to the extent he was comfortable.  It’s so neat to be able to share this experience with your kids when that’s what they want, but remembering that each child is an individual and has his or her own preferences is critical.
  2. We can hold expectations for when and how our baby will arrive all we want, but just like Gabby did with her expectations of labor itself, it’s important to remember that we’ve got to hold all of these ideas of when and how with an open hand.  I remember being so certain that my second daughter would arrive several days before 40 weeks that when she was 3 days after, I was almost frustrated at the wait.  Every gestation is different, so if we can try to keep the expectations vague, it may make for a smoother end of pregnancy.
  3. And finally, let us remember that we were divinely made for this work of giving birth.  Gabby described herself to me as a wimpy stale crunchy mom who had a homebirth— and she says that should be great encouragement that you can do it, too!  And though I see nothing wimpy in Gabby’s story, I think she brings up such an important point.  Your background, your preferences, your previous experiences with pain and endurance— none of those things should deter you from giving birth physiologically if that is what you desire.  You were made for this, and you hold far more strength than you know. 

 

Resources

The Homebirth Collective- Join the Waitlist!

Free Homebirth Mythbusters

JOIN HAPPY HOMEBIRTH ACADEMY HERE

What do we do when our previous birth experience wasn’t so happy?  How do we overcome the trauma?

 

4 Tips to Begin Healing:

1. Reframe your birth with someone outside of the situation

2. Write down everything in stream-of-consciousness style

3. Emotional Freedom Technique - Tapping

     Resource Mentioned: @LivingRootsWellness

4. Fascial Work- Craniosacral, craniofascial, myofascial, etc.

    Body Rolling Resource

5. Recommendations from Instagram

 

Resources

The Homebirth Collective- Join the Waitlist!

Free Homebirth Mythbusters

JOIN HAPPY HOMEBIRTH ACADEMY HERE

Today I’m tackling perhaps the most elusive question about labor…. What does it actually feel like?  

 

In this episode we discuss:

  • Some of the ways my followers and those inside of the Happy Homebirth Podcast Community on Facebook described the sensations
  • Some of the most commonly used words:  Intensity.  Pressure.  Power.
  • My personal perceptions of feeling during my births
  • How YOU can prepare for the feelings of birth, no matter how they present 

 

Resources

The Homebirth Collective- Join the Waitlist!

Free Homebirth Mythbusters

JOIN HAPPY HOMEBIRTH ACADEMY HERE

 

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