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My Birth Stories

The three babies thaht made me a mom. Rocklin Mom. Rocklin Doula

Jax, January 2012

Because the first birth was loaded with hospital nonsense, I made some massive changes for my second birth. The first change was breaking up with my hospital… Did you know you can break up with your hospital? It's so important to choose a hospital that aligns with your preferences! The second change was choosing a midwife instead of an OB. Midwives are experts at natural physiological birth. This meant I had a higher likelihood of having as few interventions as possible. The changes in care made all the difference.

This labor had a cosmic, wild energy, oddly similar to Jax’s personality.  It’s clear to me now that this labor was deeply connected to the sweet human growing inside my belly. But, Jax wasn’t the only one guiding this journey.  My dad was in there too. He was ill for my entire pregnancy and he passed away when I was 7 months along. My mind was in that grieving place. If you’ve lost someone, you know that place, right? When you have a weird dark cloud following you around, despite seeing the beautiful sunny sky outside. This labor had a force about it….. Jax and dad. Walking hand and hand, even though they never met. 

Ok, let’s get back to the birth… I spent much of this labor asking for drugs (but not actually wanting them). My heart and head were in conflict and even though my Doula and Midwife both assured me that the epidural was a perfectly fine option, neither one of them went running for the anesthesiologist. (This is the mark of a great labor team, btw) They made me feel heard while allowing me the time and space to process my needs. The truth is, I wanted to stop and go home but I knew I couldn’t. This was birth in all its glory. It’s what I had trained for. It pushed me forward, even when I didn’t want to go. There’s power that comes from facing that fear. My Doula and Midwife reminded me that I was safe, and I could tell that everything was normal because they were so damn calm… but my world felt like it was spinning. I never really made a decision on the epidural. My body just kept moving forward and I just continued to think about it … Taking my time… Then BAM. I transitioned into pushing and in 6 minutes, Jax exploded into this world.

I believe Jax’s temperament and beautiful heart are directly connected to both my pregnancy and labor. This is the woo-woo side of birth that continues to blow my frickin’ mind.  My boy told us who he was even before he was born. It's all connected... All of it. My dad dying, my fear of labor, my panic, and my inability to allow this birth to be graceful. It's connected.

Siena, October 2009

My first taste of birth was on October 14, 2009, when my incredible daughter Siena was born. Her birth taught me my power. It also showed me that even though you go in with knowledge (I'm pretty sure I had read every book), you’re still in a tricky medical system. It's a system that gives birthing families very little say in their own experience and I had greatly underestimated the OB rotation. Sure, my prenatal OB was great, but the OB on duty was now in charge.

Even though I had a Doula, I still ended up with unwanted Pitocin, leading to an epidural and even an unnecessary episiotomy. With what you’ve read so far, I bet you’re thinking I left my birth feeling pissed or defeated. Nope! I FELT POWERFUL. No joke! I felt like a goddamn superhero.  I believe that was primarily due to my amazing doula. She helped me stay grounded and made it possible for my husband to show up, and be present with me emotionally. This helped us both roll with the decisions that weren't going the way I had planned. I was an active participant, even when things weren't going my way. When I made decisions I hadn't planned on making, my Doula reminded me that I was in charge of this experience. I really was the most important person in that room. I want every person I work with to feel that feeling. You deserve to feel like you are the most important person in that room, not the Dr. or the nurse, YOU. 

Once my daughter was born, I felt like the most powerful person on the PLANET and I craved to feel it again. I had no idea I had such inner strength, which completely blew me away.  I knew immediately that I wanted to help everyone feel this power. I wanted to be a Doula.

Doula Near Me

Cruz, December 2013

After my first two births, I wasn’t sure if I would ever have the birth of my dreams. But, thank god, it finally happened for baby number three. I finally figured out how to allow the experience to unfold as needed, and instead of feeling like a runaway train car, it felt like a harmonious day at the spa... I’m not even kidding! There were even foot rubs! (which made the midwife nervous because I was so chilled out that it slowed my contractions during transition.) This labor completely transformed my belief that birth really is a full and complete mind-body experience. If you really want a good birth experience, you can’t just read books and learn information… You need to believe and embody what you’re learning, not to mention believe in yourself. And you absolutely have to surround yourself with people who believe in you too. 

Let me set the scene… I was almost 41 weeks pregnant, laboring at home by my lonesome while my husband slept. When it got intense, I hopped in the shower for what felt like hours. (It was probably 30 minutes.) That’s when I decided I was done. Yup. Done. Take me to the hospital and give me the drugs level done. By this point, I had experienced both a medicated and unmedicated birth, and I felt free to make any decision I wanted. It suddenly became super clear that what I wanted was an epidural, and I wanted it NOW. I woke my husband up and demanded he take me to the hospital for drugs. I’ll never forget the look of confusion on his face. The poor guy had no idea what to do, and he knew better than to question me. 

Just so you all know, this shift in my energy was 100% the move to active labor. It was a GOOD thing! But I was laboring alone, and nobody was there to tell me that. (Hint: I should have woken my husband up earlier. What I needed was support!)

Fast forward to the hospital. My midwife greeted me with a big smile and said, “Good morning! I see you’ve been working hard. Have you had breakfast? I’ll order you a tray,” in the sweetest British accent you’ve ever heard. It felt magical. Then, my Doula said, “Hey, let’s walk.” My brain wasn’t in a place to question her, so I walked… and walked some more… And somehow, I relaxed and completely and totally forgot about the epidural. True story!!! I know you think that sounds crazy and probably impossible. But, no joke. I TOTALLY FORGOT ABOUT THE EPIDURAL. I felt so taken care of! Even my contraction pattern felt peaceful. I had long breaks between contractions, but when they came, they were powerful and strong, bringing me closer to baby. Nobody brought up Pitocin or made me feel like those long breaks were bad. We all just kept going….. By the afternoon, I was ready to meet my baby. (Side note: at a different hospital, that contraction pattern would have made them VERY nervous. Where you deliver matters, which is exactly why I chose THIS hospital.)

I finally had a smooth and graceful birth, as the books describe. What got me there wasn’t hoping and praying and it wasn't even my grit or determination. It was just  the fact that I trusted every single part of the process. I trusted myself, my baby, husband, Doula, Midwife, and even the hospital. This is what hospital birth can and should be for everyone.

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