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.

You're listening to Episode 97 of the Happy Homebirth Podcast! 


When you have a perfectly lovely hospital birth, why on earth would you change things up with your next?  I’m excited to share Imogen’s story with you today, as she and her husband did just that.  Of course, we know that many mothers seek out a “better way” after having a traumatic and emotional birthing experience in the hospital.  But of course, that’s not always how it happens!  And I can’t wait for you to hear about the generational baby catch.  Let’s jump in!


Imogen lives in England, and is the mother of two children.  Her mother has worked as a midwife for over 30 years, so she grew up with somewhat of an understanding of childbirth.  However, she wouldn’t consider herself completely educated on the subject prior to her own births, and she decided in her first pregnancy that she wanted to keep it that way!  

She was, however, hoping for a natural birth, as she does not typically like to take medications of any sort.

Imogen’s midwife had a hunch that she would go quickly once she was in labor, so she warned her that she should head to the hospital soon after contractions began.

9 days after her due date, she was sitting in the nursery on her ball.  She decided to try out her breast pump, and her water dramatically broke!  She and her husband headed to the hospital with her mom. 
Upon arrival into the birthing center, she was checked and only at a 4.  They told her they wouldn’t officially write down that she was in labor, but that she could go to the early labor room to see how she progressed.

She was, however, very much in labor!  After a while of laboring on the floor, her mother gave her some gas and told her she’d be back.  She went to the midwives and asked them to check her.

Imogen was beyond 9cm dilated, so they walked/wheeled her to one of the delivery suites.  She hopped in the tub, and soon began to push.  She had to push for over an hour, turning her baby from posterior into an anterior position.  

Baby was born, and her husband asked if they could just go home.  The midwives agree, and only a few hours after giving birth, they were tucked into their beds at home.


Soon after becoming pregnant again, Imogen told her husband she was interested in a homebirth.  He was very excited and supportive of the idea, as he mentioned that going to the hospital had felt somewhat traumatic with the first— hospitals generally being a place of sickness and sadness.


She began searching for podcasts and found Happy Homebirth, which she listened to throughout her pregnancy. Imogen said that it made a huge difference feeling that she had a community of support, and that the stories helped her feel confident in her decision.  She also reached out and found local homebirth mothers to connect with.


Though her pregnancy was healthy, the pandemic added a cloud of stress and exhaustion.  She wasn’t able to have help with her toddler, and she was still working full time—but from home.  This caused more aches and pains than with her first.


3 days after her due date, Imogen woke up at 6:20 with a pain in her belly.  She flipped over, and a few minutes later felt it again.  After a few minutes, she realized she could be in labor!  The contractions were 3 minutes apart.  She told her husband, but had him stay in bed with their daughter.


She called her mother and had her come over.  They worked through some contractions together, and eventually discussed with each other that the midwife should be called. 


Imogen wanted to get her birthing space set up with the pool, so her mother went to do that.  Suddenly, though, she knew birth was imminent.  Her mom ran upstairs to find Imogen’s husband preparing to get in the shower.  She told him to head downstairs or he’d miss the baby’s birth.  He came downstairs, sat their toddler in his lap, and Imogen’s mother ended up catching her grandson before the midwives arrived.  


Although it wasn’t the water birth Imogen had imagined, the empowerment and wonder of her mother being able to catch her grandson was amazing.


Episode Roundup:

  1. You don’t have to have a negative hospital experience to choose to do something differently the next time around.  If you feel empowered, go for the homebirth!
  2. Community makes a difference.  Imogen listened to happy homebirth, she was active inside of our Facebook community, and she connected with other local homebirth mothers.  This was incredibly helpful for her as she prepared, especially with all of the pandemic lockdowns of her pregnancy.

You're listening to the Happy Homebirth Podcast, episode 96!


What would it be like to go through pregnancy and birth with someone you loved dearly?  Whether it's a friend or family member, experiencing pregnancy with someone close can be amazing.  But... when it's your twin?!  From in the womb to full-wombs together... what an incredible story today's episode entails!


Join me as Sharina and Latrina share their most recent (perhaps final) pregnancies with us-- and how they shared the experience together!



You're listening to episode 95 of the Happy Homebirth Podcast!


Show Notes:

Although Angelique looked forward to her first birth (she planned a homebirth from the beginning) her labor experience did not go as planned.  Both her midwife and her backup midwife were attending other births at the time she went into labor.  Her labor was intense and felt fast-- she never felt like she could catch up with the contractions.  A third midwife arrived before her son was born, but not long before.


Angelique's postpartum was devastatingly hard.  She and her husband were functioning on almost zero sleep, and although she tried to explain the situation to others, people were not realizing just how serious the issues they were experiencing were.  This lack of sleep turned into hallucinations and terrifying thoughts for Angelique.  Eventually she and her husband came up with a way for Angelique to get more sleep, and although she didn't fully recover until about a year after, things did begin to get better.


Everything was different with her second baby!  Angelique had a beautiful experience, and went into labor right after a tornado came through--knocking out the power.  It was a gorgeous day, though, and a birth surrounded by all of the people she wanted there.  Her second baby was born peacefully, and she had a blissful postpartum experience the second time around.

You're listening to episode #94 of the Happy Homebirth Podcast!


Join me as we do a mash-up episode.  I interviewed Julie Solomon of The Influencer Podcast on her own show.  We discussed the details of why and how she gave birth at home.  

This was such a joyous show.  Make sure you check out her podcast, especially if you're of the female entrepreneurial spirit!

You're listening to the Happy Homebirth Podcast, episode 93!


I’m excited to switch things up today.  This podcast episode is going to be all about fertility awareness, and why understanding our menstrual cycle can be hugely empowering.  We’ll be discussing this with my good friend Sophia Zafares, who is a Fertility Awareness Method Educator.  So… basically the perfect person to get the low down on what this all means.


And exciting news!  Check out the happy-Homebirth podcast on nstagram this week, as Sophia and I will be holding a giveaway together.  You don’t want to miss it.  Literature and a useful tool!


Show Notes:


Sophia is a fertility awareness method educator.


FAM- understanding the biomarkers of your fertility to avoid pregnancy, achieve pregnancy, or keep up with your general hormonal cycles.


Training through FEMM: Fertility Education and Medical Management


Pills, IUD, Shot, Implant: It’s important to know that they have basically the same forms of synthetic hormones.

These hormones do not interact with our bodies in the same ways that our natural hormones do. 


These hormones are administered at consistent levels, whereas during our natural cycles, the hormones go through rhythms instead of a steady-state. 


Hormonal bc: steady state, masculine stability

FAM: tuning into the body and noticing what it’s doing, feminine rhythm



Hormonal bc (side effects/ EFFECTS): Remember that hormones are involved in every part of our bodies and all of our systems

Prevent ovulation - without ovulation, certain hormones cannot be created.  Depleted nutrients, lower ability to absorb and use the nutrients

Affects attraction and mate selection- choose someone they wouldn’t typically choose, come off of bc and are very unhappy

Depletion of bone density



It takes several years for a girl’s cycle to fully mature.  If a young girl is put on bc, her maturity stops, and her cervix will be aged. 



Lisa Hendrickson-Jack: The Fifth Vital Sign, Fertility Friday



Follow Sophia: @sage.fertility on Instagram

Website: www.sagefertility.co


Congratulations to the newest members of Happy Homebirth Academy!

Check out myhappyhomebirth.com to access the interview application.  It's open this week!


Show Notes:

In her first pregnancy, Katie felt excited about her birth, but did not think there was anything for her to learn.  She knew that God had made her to give birth and she would.  She thought that any education she found, like What to Expect When You’re Expecting would be negative and unhelpful.  Looking back, Katie says this was well-meaning, but very naive.


With her first labor, she was in Mass and noticed that she was having “stomach pains” almost every 6 minutes.


Once she went to the hospital, she labored all night without any coping mechanisms.  She just knew that she wanted to have an unmedicated birth.


She called her mom and asked her to make her way there- a 5 hour drive.  Katie’s labor stalled the entire 5 hours her mom was making the drive.  As soon as she arrived, her labor began progressing immediately.  


Once her baby was born, they were taken to a recovery room with an amazing queen-sized bed.  


With her second birth, her husband was deployed.  Her mother came to support her.


Once she went to the hospital, she met up with her doula, who was an amazing support.  


They walked the hospital halls, then went to their room.  Once Katie’s water broke, her baby was born about 4 minutes later.  

Because she had declined antibiotics for GBS, Katie had to stay for 3 days.


Katie learned so much about birth between her 2nd and 3rd birth.  Because she didn’t want another experience like her previous hospital one, she began looking into birthing centers.  Her doula asked if she’d be interested in homebirth, to which she replied “no way”. 

Later that very week, Katie decided she did in fact want a homebirth!


Her doula accompanied her into the bathroom, then yelled for the midwife to get in there.  Katie was adamant that she didn’t want to have her baby in the bathroom,, so she walked over to the tub, where her water broke and Fetal Ejection Reflex kicked in.  She flipped over onto her back and then pushed her baby out.  She found out that her baby had a nuchal hand.


Katie loved the experience of her third pregnancy and adores homebirth.

Happy Homebirth Academy is open for enrollment through Sat, Sept 19th!  Head over to: https://www.myhappyhomebirth.com/hha to sign up!


Joelle and her husband did not choose to have a homebirth until only a few weeks before giving birth. 


She and her husband watched The Business of Being Born early on in the pregnancy, but decided their hospital would be just fine, as it was considered Baby Friendly.


However, as Covid-19 hit and Joelle was forced home to work (virtual school), she spent more time looking into her options.  She decided to meet with a local midwife, and it was decided that homebirth was the best option for her family.




Happy 100,000+ Downloads, Happy Homebirthers!

We're celebrating today with a replay of the episode that played when we hit 10,000 downloads (only a little over a year ago... we're growing fast!).  
This episode is also the story of my own birth... the inspiration for all of the childbirth education I've begun creating since.  
The 3 Pillars of a Happy Homebirth live event is this week, September 8th-10th at 8pm EST.

Make sure you join!

*IMPORTANT*: Don't forget to sign up for the FREE 3 Day Event: 3 Pillars of a Happy Homebirth!  www.myhappyhomebirth.com/3pillars

Happening Sept 8-10th (replay will be available)


Show Notes:

Jocelyne noticed that pregnancy was listed as a “condition”, which felt incredibly wrong for her.  She did a google search and found a birth center located only 5 minutes away from her home.  Jocelyne and Eddie were so excited for their lovely birth center experience.

Unfortunately, as the date approached, Jocelyne and Eddie found out some devastating news…

The birth center would be closing down before their due date.  They were going out of business, and the midwives sent an e-mail discussing local hospitals to choose from.

Jocelyne drove up to the birth center to ask what was going on.
She spoke with one of the midwives, who told her she could consider homebirth with another local midwife. 
“Is that even safe?” Jocelyne remembers asking.  

After much research and consideration, Jocelyne and Eddie were sold on their homebirth experience.  They were even able to find a doula who spoke Spanish— perfect for their situation!

Jocelyne’s labor was long and arduous, but when she looks back, she says the experience was perfect for herself and her husband.  She relied on Eddie, as she says she always has in their relationship.  He was her perfect comfort and support.


A while after their daughter was born, Eddie realized that the domain homebirth.com was for sale.  They chose to purchase it, not knowing exactly what they would do with it at the time, but they knew they wanted to help pregnant women.


Jocelyne and Eddie have begun with plans to use homebirth.com as a way to educate mothers about this birthing option, and to create an online midwifery matching service.  Families will be able to search their location and add in specific credentials and preferences about their midwife in order to find their perfect match.


To learn more about this amazing growing resource, go to homebirth.com or check them out on instagram: instagram.com/homebirthdotcom

Join the Happy Homebirth Live event!  Sept 8th-10th:


3 Pillars of a Happy Homebirth <---Click here!



Show Notes

Lindsey and her husband were living in Denver, Colorado while her husband finished his master’s degree.  As the program was ending, they knew their next step was pregnancy.  Lindsey thought it would likely take some time, but her husband thought they’d become pregnant quickly.  He was right, and they were pregnant within the first month.


They knew that they would be moving back home to Boston before the baby’s arrival, but Lindsey of course needed prenatal care in the meantime.  She went to a low-cost clinic for her first appointment, but this “low cost” appointment actually turned out to have a $1000 price tag.  She left before the end of the appointment and began searching for another option.


Lindsey found a homebirth practice in her area that was willing to take her on solely for prenatal care.  She loved her appointments and enjoyed going to the cozy old home, sitting on the couch and sipping tea with midwives dressed in comfortable yoga attire.  The entire process was holistic.  They asked questions about her husband’s job, her life, her emotional well-being.  


When it was time to pack up and move home (right at 30 weeks), she was sad to leave the practice, but excited to meet her new providers at a hospital-based midwifery birth center. Two days after moving home, she had her first appointment.


The meeting was more sterile, less cozy, but she knew this would be the case going into it, and was fine with her birthing situation.


And then… at her second appointment, everything changed.  Covid-19 fear struck the United States, and everything was shutting down.  Appointments were now awkward and hurried, the receptionist showing clear distress at people even being in the office.


At this point, she and her husband began wondering if perhaps homebirth would be a good backup option for their birth.  They decided to reach out and interview two midwifery groups and see what they thought.

Upon interview, they learned two things: The “birth center” through the hospital was really just a glorified Labor and Delivery unit… not a separate entity.  Her midwives could be overruled by an OB at any point.  And… if they wanted to have a homebirth, they had to commit.  There was no backup retainer, as the midwives were filling quickly due to so many people switching into their care.


Lindsey and her husband chose homebirth and fully committed.  


During the last five weeks, Lindsey was isolated.  This was sad, as she had just moved home and was looking forward to spending time with her family.  The positive side of this was that she was able to spend time focusing on her upcoming birth.  She practiced yoga daily and re-read Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth.  She also listened to positive birth stories and podcasts constantly.


Whenever any negative thoughts entered Lindsey’s mind, she followed the thought to it’s conclusion. 

“What if the baby has a shoulder dystocia?  Well, I’ll flip onto hands and knees.  What if the baby isn’t breathing?  Well, my midwives are trained in neonatal resuscitation.  This practice showed Lindesy that she needn’t be fearful of the birthing process.”

Lindsey also practiced “keep ups”— lifting her arms up over her head for a minute at a time and coping with the discomfort.  She knew this would serve her in labor.


At 39 weeks, Lindsey’s labor began.  She thought that she would be using all kinds of movement and coping mechanisms, perhaps even assuming asanas during her birth.  None of this happened, as Lindsey realized that she needed to go completely inward.  The majority of her labor was spent on her side in bed: closing her eyes between contractions, then relaxing completely and focusing on her breathing during them.


Her midwife listened to her through a contraction on the phone, but there was only silence.   Lindsey hoped she wouldn’t take that for thinking nothing was happening.


Lindsey was completely silent through her labor until she announced to her husband, “I’m having rectal pressure.  Can you please call the midwife?”


The midwife rushed over, and as soon as she got there, Lindsey got into the birth pool.  As soon as she hit this point, she felt like her entire body was rippling with contractions, and she now recognizes this as the fetal ejection reflex.  Even at this point, she was not pushing.    She felt that her uterus was saying, “We are going to get this baby out now.”


Lindsey reached her hand down, and unexpectedly felt her baby’s head.  In that moment, she felt fear.  She had an impulse to hold him in and tighten up, but instead she knew she needed to relax.  As she relaxed her body, her baby’s head “popped” out.  One contraction later, and his body “slurped” behind.  


She felt a massive surge of relief.


The tricky part of Lindsey’s labor?  After her baby was born, her placenta did not come out.  Her midwives told her to “give it a push,” but Lindsey had no idea how- she had not pushed at all with her baby’s birth.


Because of this, the placenta took 2 hours to be born.  Her midwives were at the ready with pitocin if needed, but they were willing to give Lindsey’s body the space it needed to release the placenta on its own, and it finally did. 


Now, she still struggles with the isolation of Covid.  She hurts knowing that her family members still are unable to enjoy her son in the way that she had always imagined.  At the same time, she recognizes that the bond she has grown with her baby is unbelievably deep, and the bond she will share with mothers who also went through birthing in a pandemic will last a lifetime.


Episode Roundup

Can you believe that?  As we head into the episode roundup, I want to leave you with this:

Lindsey didn’t push her baby out, she released it.  I love this podcast, because it shows the entire gamut of birth.  The difficult and the serene.  No, not every birth will end with you releasing your baby and having no clue how to to push out your placenta, but this is a variation of birth.  This is possible for you.  When I think of how Lindsey prepared for this birth, how in tune she was with her breathing, how seriously she took clearing her fears… it makes sense to me that she was able to experience this unusual, beautiful birth.  I love her approach, as it’s so similar to what I teach my students.  Spending time learning to relax, exploring and releasing your fears… it’s all part of a beautiful process of preparation.  If you’re curious about learning more, make sure you join the 3 Pillars of a Happy Homebirth Event, or jump into our Facebook group by searching Happy Homebirth Podcast Community into the Facebook search bar.  Okay, friends.  That’s all I’ve got for you this week.  I look forward to seeing you back here next week.

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