The Birth Hour - A Birth Story Podcast

By Bryn Huntpalmer

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Whether you are pregnant and looking for inspirational birth stories through your pregnancy, trying to conceive, a first time mom or a veteran mother of multiple children, you can learn, laugh and maybe even cry a little at these moving childbirth stories from women willing to share one of the most intimate moments of their lives.

Episode Date
Elizabeth Tucker - 92320 8.44 PM

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Sep 24, 2020
503| Two Hospital Inductions at 37 Weeks - Meghan Pow

Both of Meghan’s births were, coincidentally, hospital inductions at 37 weeks.

Sep 22, 2020
502| Accidental Unassisted Homebirth - Deborah Woodson

After an uneventful pregnancy, Deborah thought she had planned for all aspects of her labor and delivery; but, she never anticipated having an unexpectedly quick labor and unassisted delivery.

Sep 17, 2020
501| Two VBACs (One During Wildfire Evacuation) after Cesarean Birth - Tayla Malott

Tayla shares her three birth stories.

Sep 15, 2020
500| Unplanned Cesarean Followed by Empowering Twins VBAC - Erica Beal

After a disempowering birth with her first son that nearly ended in tragedy, Erica vowed to have a different experience when she got pregnant again.

Sep 10, 2020
499| Pain Free, Enjoyable Homebirth Experience - Ashley Renwick

Ashley's labor started late on the evening on May 3rd 2018. She was unable to fall asleep that night after what she thought was an upset belly and turned out to be the beginning of her laboring journey.

Sep 08, 2020
498| Switching from Hospital to Homebirth During COVID-19 - Megan Halicki

At 30 weeks, Megan changed her birthing plan from a hospital birth to a home birth after finding out she might not have any support person (including her partner) in the room due to Covid-19.

Sep 03, 2020
497| Military Family: Two Hospital Birth Stories with Pitocin - Kemah Muñoz

Kemah shares her two pregnancy, birth, and postpartum stories.

Sep 01, 2020
496| Two Homebirths and Cesarean Birth Due to Placenta Previa - Audra Fullerton

Audra shares her cesarean birth stories.

Aug 27, 2020
495|Pregnancy after 40 and Gentle Cesarean Birth with Meg Tietz

Returning guest, Meg Tietz, shares her most recent birth story, a gentle cesarean.

Aug 25, 2020
494| Birth Center Birth Story in Brooklyn, NY - Nijsha Nesbitt [REBROADCAST]

Nijsha shares her birth story, and discusses the support of her partner, doula, and midwives who helped her get through 18 hours of labor.

Aug 20, 2020
493| Homebirth in Hawaii Birth Story - Bree Poort

Bree and her husband, Bobby, planned for a home birth in their home on the island of Oahu in Hawaii with a local midwife. Bree went into labor the day before her due date and labored all night in the tub.

Aug 18, 2020
492| 23 Week Loss Due to Incompetent Cervix and Rainbow Baby Birth Story - Bree Dirkmaat

Bree shares her stories of loss and birth.

Aug 13, 2020
491| Hospital Induction with Doula Birth Story - Amy Thomas Ryan

After developing a robust unmedicated birth plan for her March 6th due date, Amy learned at about 32 weeks that her blood pressure was such that an induction a few weeks early would be very likely.

Aug 11, 2020
490| Scheduled Cesarean Birth for Breech Baby During COVID-19 Pandemic - Megan Johnson

Megan's pregnancy went relatively smoothly, except for mild nausea in the first trimester, headaches in the 2nd trimester, and the COVID-19 pandemic beginning her third trimester. At 32 weeks, Megan was diagnosed with gestational hypertension, which raised concerns because her baby was in the breech position. 

Aug 06, 2020
Preview: Elizabeth Quinn & Caitlin Shrum Answer Listener Questions

To listen to the full episode join our Patreon at!

This was such a fun episode and I loved catching up with these two Birth Hour fan favorites. We talk everything from VBACs, to healing postpartum, to raising boys vs girls, to favorite products! 

Here are slinks to their birth stories if you haven't heard them before:



Aug 05, 2020
489| Back Labor, Breastfeeding Issues & PPA Followed by Fast 2nd Birth & Postpartum Bliss - Morgan MacDermott [REBROADCAST]

Morgan shares her birth stories and discusses various aspects of breastfeeding.

Aug 04, 2020
488|Four Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) Pregnancies & COVID-19 NICU Experience - Morgan Sanchez

Megan shares her birth stories and discusses Hyperemesis Gravidarum and giving birth during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jul 30, 2020
487| Surgery During Pregnancy & Two Positive Hospital Induction Birth Stories - Caroline Wynne

After a surgery, an 8 week recovery, and battling an infection, Caroline Wynne felt her body was out of control and feared for her son’s life. A mother’s womb should be the safest place for her growing baby, but Caroline felt the complete opposite. Miraculously, she had a very positive induction experience and delivered a healthy baby boy despite all the health obstacles. 

19 months later, Caroline found herself pregnant again with a sweet little girl. After a (blissful) uncomplicated pregnancy, Caroline decided to have another elective induction since her first experience was so positive! 

Become a listener-supporter of The Birth Hour.

Jul 28, 2020
Expert Interview: Erica Ziel on Prenatal & Postnatal Fitness & Core Healing

Each month, we publish an expert interview for our listener supporters via Patreon! Become a member at for access to these episodes as well as a ton of other fun perks!

I really enjoyed talking with Erica all about which exercises are safe during pregnancy and postpartum, and the fundamentals of healing your core after baby. 

Erica also has a podcast called Core Connections and here are some of the episodes that are especially relevant to our discussion today if you want to hear more from Erica!

Erica also has an online course called Knocked Up Fitness and Core Rehab for Postpartum that I have personally enjoyed as have many members of The Birth Hour community! 

Jul 23, 2020
486| Unmedicated Posterior Birth Story at Midwifery Center Attached to Hospital

Teisia shares the story of her unmedicated birth with a midwife.

Jul 21, 2020
485| Two Hospital Births: Medicated & Unmedicated - Aleck Lang

Aleck shares the stories of her medicated and unmedicated hospital births and postpartum recoveries.

Become a podcast supporter at!

Jul 16, 2020
484| Positive Hospital Birth After Placental Cyst & Gestational Hypertension in Pregnancy - Meriankh Cook

Meriankh was planning an unmedicated birth at a birth center. However, due to a very last minute gestational hypertension diagnosis, she ended up delivering in a hospital, with an epidural, and having a very positive experience.

Jul 14, 2020
483| Unplanned Cesarean & Healing, Scheduled Cesarean Birth Stories - Elise Cripe

Elise shares her two cesarean birth stories.

Jul 09, 2020
482| Type 2 Diabetes, Unmedicated Hospital Birth, & Working Postpartum as RN During COVID-19 - A'briel Banks

When A’briel became pregnant with her first child, she was quite surprised as one OBGYN had previously assured her that she’d need fertility treatment in order to conceive. She immediately sought out doula support and started to build a birth team full of strong African American women.

Jul 07, 2020
Jen McLellan Expert Interview Preview

To hear the full episode, subscribe at!

Jen McLellan is a published author and founder of Plus Size Birth and the Plus Mommy blog. She helps people navigate the world of plus size pregnancy, shares tips for embracing your body, and laughs her way through the adventures of parenthood. Her work has been featured in major publications such as Yahoo Shine, Huffington Post, Everyday Feminism, and International Doula. She authored My Plus Size Pregnancy Guide and co-wrote the Amazon bestseller, The Peachie Moms Guide to Body Love for Moms. Jen is also a childbirth educator, skilled patient advocate, professional speaker, wife, and mother.

Jul 05, 2020
481| Hospital Induction Without Epidural Birth Story - Felicia Bullock [REBROADCAST]

After the OB she loved left the office a month before her due date, Felicia was left having to advocate for her birth plan when the new doctor attempted to scare her into an early induction. She was finally induced at almost 42 weeks. After Cervidil didn’t change anything overnight, Felicia received a small amount of pitocin, which jumpstarted what ended up being her ideal birth without an epidural.

Jul 02, 2020
480| Prodromal Labor, Walking Epidural, and Postpartum Anxiety - Melody Brownton

Melody shares her hospital birth using a midwifery practice in Toronto, Canada, as well as experience with postpartum anxiety.

Jun 30, 2020
479| Unmedicated Hospital Birth with an OB - Grace Greene [REBROADCAST]

Grace had an unmedicated hospital birth with an OB. She prepared for her unmedicated birth by hiring a doula and taking Bradley classes during her pregnancy. She also had the added bonus of having her sister as her L&D nurse throughout her entire birth!

Jun 25, 2020
478| Active Duty Navy Mom Planning Homebirth - Tiara Perry

Tiara shares her experience being pregnant while serving active duty in the Navy and planning a home birth.

Jun 23, 2020
477| Cholestatis of Pregnancy (ICP) Induction Birth Story - Bryn Koger

When Bryn got pregnant with her third child, she planned for another unmedicated birth in a birth center. The plan changed when she was diagnosed with Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy(ICP) at 33 weeks and risked out of the birth center.

Jun 18, 2020
476| TTC, Hospital Induction Laboring with & without Epidural - Susanna Birdwell

After 2.5 years of trying as well as a miscarriage in 2018, Susanna and Will found out they were pregnant with their rainbow baby in February 2019. They learned halfway through the pregnancy that Susanna would be induced due to high blood pressure. She went in at 39 weeks to be induced, hoping to avoid pain medications.

Jun 16, 2020
475| Giving Birth During COVID19 with Virtual Doula Support - Liz Teich

Liz moved to a new city just outside of NYC right before the Coronavirus outbreak really set it. It turned out that her new city of New Rochelle was a hotspot for COVID19 and quickly earned the label of "containment zone."

Jun 11, 2020
474| Unmedicated Hospital Birth & Struggling Postpartum - Naria Menard

Naria and her husband, Luther, received unexpected news of their first pregnancy in January 2019. Though unexpected, years of being exposed to pregnancy, birth, and postpartum experiences through family and education had prepared Naria to make informed decisions about the birth experience she wanted.

Jun 09, 2020
473| Cesarean Birth Stories & Postpartum Depression - Christine McNabb

Today's episode is a rebroadcast of Christine McNabb's episode from the archive. Christine had three girls and then found out she was pregnant with a boy. The idea of raising a black boy in America caused Christine extreme anxiety and depression throughout pregnancy and postpartum. She shares how that affected her bonding with her son, how she overcame it, and how she's helping women today.

Jun 04, 2020
472| What's Behind Racial Disparities in Pregnancy & Childbirth - Denene Millner

Today I'm replaying an episode from Denene Millner, who shared her experience with pregnancy and childbirth as a black woman in America back in 2016 on The Birth Hour. But first I'm going to share some clips from NPR's Code Switch podcast which recently covered this topic.

Jun 02, 2020
471| Planning a Hospital Birth with Midwives & Epidural - Angela Damonte

Angela planned for a birth with hospital midwives. Her birth plan included an epidural and support from her partner who was a hospital employee.

May 28, 2020
470| Quick Labor, Long Pushing Stage & Navigating PPD - Britt Watkins

Britt shares her birth story and discusses breastfeeding and postpartum depression.

May 26, 2020
469| Hospital Birth During Coronavirus & Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy (ICP) -Madeline Wrubel

Madeline shares about giving birth during COVID-19 and discusses ICP.

May 21, 2020
468| Unplanned Cesarean Birth Story - Shannon McQueen

Shannon shares her birth story and discusses her peripartum anxiety.

May 19, 2020
467| Supportive and Positive Hospital Birth Experience After Bedrest in Pregnancy - Karissa Goding

During a very healthy, normal pregnancy, Karissa was unexpectedly sent to the hospital at 29 weeks with preterm contractions. They determined that she was not in labor and sent her home after a night of observation and medication to bedrest for the next five weeks.

May 14, 2020
466| Hospital Induction with Midwives - Emily Slyter

Emily shares her birth story and also discusses breastfeeding.

May 07, 2020
465| Twin Birth at 34 Weeks + NICU Stay - Laura Attanasio

Laura is a faculty member in public health whose research focuses on quality and equity in maternity care. She shares the story of birthing her fraternal twin girls, their NICU stay, and breastfeeding.

May 05, 2020
464| Midwifery Within Hospital Birth Story - Lauren Barlis [REBROADCAST]

Lauren's episode first aired in Mach 2016.

Apr 30, 2020
463|Covid 19 Pregnancy Experiences - Listener Call-ins
Apr 28, 2020
462| Successful ECV for Breech Baby & Two Hospital Birth Stories - Gabrielle Cosel

Gabey shares her two birth stories with the same midwife group in a hospital.

Apr 23, 2020
461| Evidence on COVID-19 with Rebecca Dekker of Evidence Based Birth - 42020 10.49 PM

I interviewed Rebecca Dekker from Evidence Based Birth on April 13, 2020, for an expert interview bonus episode exclusive to our patreon listener-supporters. We scheduled that interview months in advance before Coronavirus was on anyone's radar in the U.S. She was so generous to stick around for an extra conversation about the existing evidence/research around COVID-19 and I wanted to make sure that portion of the interview was available to our entire audience.

Apr 21, 2020
460| Car Birth & Positive Hospital Experience During Coronavirus - Katie White

Katie shares her three birth stories, focusing on her most recent, an unassisted car birth with a positive postpartum experience in the hospital.

Apr 16, 2020
460| Car Birth & Positive Hospital Experience During Coronavirus - Katie White

Katie shares her three birth stories, focusing on her most recent, an unassisted car birth with a positive postpartum experience in the hospital.

Apr 16, 2020
460| Car Birth & Positive Hospital Experience During Coronavirus - Katie White

Katie shares her three birth stories, focusing on her most recent, an unassisted car birth with a positive postpartum experience in the hospital.

Apr 16, 2020
459| Twin Birth During COVID-19 in the UK - Melanie Hadida

Melanie discusses preparing for her c-section twin birth and the how COVID-19 affected her pregnancy, birth, and postpartum.

Apr 14, 2020
458| Giving Birth with Doula Support when your Husband has COVID-19 - Danielle Stone (Part 2)

This is the second part of Danielle's episode, in which she tells her birth story.

Apr 07, 2020
457| Giving Birth with Doula Support when your Husband has COVID-19 - Danielle Stone (Part 1)

This is the first part of Danielle's story. She shares her pregnancy story and learning her husband had COVID-19.

Apr 07, 2020
Covid-19 pregnancy experience

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Apr 02, 2020
456| Giving Birth During Coronavirus - Kristen Seward

Kristen Seward's First Hand Account Giving Birth During COVID-19

Mar 31, 2020
455| IUI Pregnancy & Homebirth Story - Ndeya Snow

Ndeya and her wife, Kourtney, knew even before they were expecting that they wanted to have a home birth. After a simple IUI in January 2018, they were pregnant! Armed with knowledge and the support of her wife and fabulous midwives, Ndeya went into labor and birth feeling confident and excited. After 20 hours of early labor, 10 hours of active labor and 25 minutes of pushing (in a squat) their daughter, Aminah, was born, in the middle of their living room.

Mar 26, 2020
455| IUI Pregnancy & Homebirth Story - Ndeya Snow

Ndeya and her wife, Kourtney, knew even before they were expecting that they wanted to have a home birth. After a simple IUI in January 2018, they were pregnant! Armed with knowledge and the support of her wife and fabulous midwives, Ndeya went into labor and birth feeling confident and excited. After 20 hours of early labor, 10 hours of active labor and 25 minutes of pushing (in a squat) their daughter, Aminah, was born, in the middle of their living room.

Mar 26, 2020
454| Infertility, Using an Egg Donor, & Hospital Birth Story - Kimberly Mace

Kimberly discusses her fertility journey and birth story.

Mar 24, 2020
453|Switching from Hospital to Home Birth at 34 Weeks - Monique Lamhut

Monique Lamhut discusses switching from a hospital birth to a homebirth in her third trimester.

Mar 19, 2020
452|OB Hospital Birth & Midwife Hospital Birth Stories - Juliana Ramirez [REBROADCAST]

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Mar 17, 2020
Preview - Expert Interview with Amy Ard of Motherhood Beyond Bars

Listen to a preview of our most recent Expert Interview with Amy Ard of Motherhood Beyond Bars, an organization that supports pregnant and postpartum women in prison as well as their families. 

Become a listener supporter for as little as $5/month to access these bonus episodes via

Mar 13, 2020
451| Pregnancy, Birth & Postpartum While in Prison - Danielle Edwards

Danielle shares her experience with being pregnant while incarcerated, giving birth without any family support, and the physical and emotional toll of recovering from childbirth while in prison and separated from her baby.

Mar 13, 2020
450| Birth Center Birth Story & Postpartum Experience - Bekah Martinez

Bekah and her boyfriend discovered they were pregnant after 3 short months of dating, and struggled to navigate their new roles as partners and future parents throughout an otherwise uneventful pregnancy.

Mar 10, 2020
449| Unmedicated Hospital Birth & Sleeping through Labor - Shanicia Boswell [REBROADCAST]

I was 38 weeks and 5 days pregnant when I went into labor. Just one day prior, My daughter's father and I went to my mother's house to go to the state fair. I was so over being pregnant, I decided to walk the baby out. I went into labor early that morning around 2 AM. Thankfully, I slept through most of my labor and the next morning we took the two hour drive back to Atlanta. I stayed home until 7 PM then labored unmedicated at the hospital before giving birth.

Mar 05, 2020
448| Twins Born on Different Days Birth Story - Jackie Laino

Jackie's labor was 48 hours from beginning to end: baby A came vaginally on September 10th, and 15 hours later, baby B was born on September 11th from an emergency C section.

Mar 03, 2020
Preview - Bryn & Richard Talk All Things Sleep - February AMA

Listen to a short preview of the most recent Ask Me Anything Episode (exclusively available to our listener supporters via Patreon)! After three kids, Bryn and Richard still aren't experts but they are in the trenches with you and have learned a few things along the way!

Mar 03, 2020
447| Collaborative Care - Preparing for a Hospital Birth & a Homebirth - Brett Larkin

Yoga teacher Brett Larkin wanted a natural homebirth (despite objections from her husband and family). As a compromise she and her husband decided on a plan for collaborative care, wanting to be prepared for both a hospital and a homebirth.

Feb 27, 2020
446| Birth Center & Hospital Unmedicated Births + Getting Help with PPD - Karyn Brown

Karyn had two unmedicated births with midwives, but both experiences were very different.

Feb 25, 2020
445| Bradley Method Birth & Overcoming Breastfeeding Challenges - Victoria Hill

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Feb 20, 2020
444| Transferring Care at 30 Weeks & Birth Center Birth Story - Jana Iankova

Jana tell her birth story and discusses switching care providers.

Feb 18, 2020
443| Plus Size Pregnancy & Advocating for Unmedicated Birth Plan - Alle Sanchez

Alle had her heart set on an unmedicated birth. She spent her entire pregnancy educating herself on what that might look like with being overweight, however, she also had to deal with fear mongering from her OB. She was encouraged by her support team which included her husband and her mother, but constantly questioned by her medical care provider.

Feb 13, 2020
442| Unmedicated Hospital Births & Postpartum Bliss vs PPD - Zahra Kassam

Zahra Kassam, an early childhood education entrepreneur, delivered her two children with unmedicated hospital births using midwives and the hypnobirthing method.

Feb 11, 2020
441| Gestational Diabetes, Induction, and Becoming a Single Mother by Choice - Liz Ekelund

After 10 years with her partner, Liz was facing two daunting life changes simultaneously: a failing relationship and a positive pregnancy test. Liz shares her story.

Feb 06, 2020
440| Two Hospital Birth, Two Homebirths (one accidental unassisted) - Logan Randazzo

Logan shares her four birth stories.

Feb 04, 2020
439| A Labor & Delivery Nurse tells her Hospital Birth Story - Isabel Jean

Isabel went into labor while working a night shift as an L&D nurse at the hospital she was delivering.

Jan 30, 2020
Ask Me Anything: Preview Bonus Episode

Every month I'll be publishing an 'Ask Me Anything' bonus episode for our listener supporters! Become a listener supporter to gain access to these episodes every month via!

As a listener supporter you'll also receive access to over 300 birth story episodes from our archives, membership in our private FB group, and be entered in a BIG giveaway (value $1450) we are running right now!!

Jan 29, 2020
438| Second Unmedicated VBAC - Caitlin Shrum

Listener favorite, Caitlin Shrum, is back to share her second VBAC birth story. You can hear her first two birth stories (episodes 185 & 244) in our archives. Archives are accessible to listener supporters via Patreon!

Jan 28, 2020
437| Unmedicated Hospital Birth with Birth Tub, Therapy Balls, and Labor Bars - Kayla Bruccoleri

Kayla shares her the story of her unmedicated hospital birth.

Jan 23, 2020
436| Pregnancy After Weight Loss Surgery & Precipitous Birth - Simone Torborg

Simone prepared to have a typical, long-and-late birth, but Mother Nature had a different idea. Nothing could have prepared Simone and her husband Gregg for their little boy to come 10 days early, fast and furious, with a precipitous labor.

Jan 21, 2020
435| Gestational Diabetes & Epidural Hospital Birth - Joanna Lundeen

Joanna shares her experience with gestational diabetes and an epidural hospital birth.

Jan 16, 2020
434| Type 1 Diabetes, Induction for Preeclampsia & Unplanned Cesarean - Lindsay VanNieulande

Lindsay and her husband, Jeff, live in Detroit, Michigan, with their son, Rivers. Lindsay has had type one diabetes since she was a child, and with it came some obstacles to navigate in order to start her journey to become pregnant. Lindsay became pregnant shortly after her team of doctors gave her a green light; and, her pregnancy went well until she was unexpectedly hospitalized at 27 weeks due to pre-eclampsia.

Jan 14, 2020
433| 32 Hour Labor, 30 Hours at Home and 2 Hours at the Hospital - Julia FitzRoy-Chow

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Jan 09, 2020
432| Navigating Husband's Cancer Diagnosis and Starting a Family - Jennifer Hanks

Jennifer’s husband was diagnosed with cancer two months after they were married. They were able to bank his sperm before he started chemotherapy and knew that IVF would be the only way to have children in the future. After years of battling cancer they decided they didn’t want to let cancer hold them back from living life. They implanted one embryo through IVF and were shocked when they found out their one embryo had split into two. They were expecting twins!

Jan 07, 2020
431| Four Hospital Births: Two with Epidurals, Two Unmedicated - Cassi Robinson

On this episode, Cassi shares her four hospital birth stories and some great resources.

Jan 02, 2020
430| Unmedicated Hospital Birth with AROM - Julia Carrion

Julia planned for an unmedicated, hospital water birth. After having to have her water artificially ruptured and finding meconium, the water birth was no longer an option. After laboring for nearly 26 hours, pushing for 4.5 hours and narrowly avoiding a c-section, Julia was able to have an unmedicated vaginal birth.

Dec 24, 2019
429| Cesarean Birth and Accepting a 2nd Cesarean after planning for a VBAC - Danielle Estrada

Danielle shares her two cesarean birth stories

Dec 19, 2019
428| Gestational Diabetes, Beautiful Birth Center Birth, and Postpartum Preeclampsia - Victoria Buker

On this episode, Victoria shares her pregnancy, birth, and postpartum stories. After dealing with Gestational Diabetes that was insulin dependent for her fasting numbers and finding out she had Group B strep, Victoria had the most amazing, beautiful birth. She labored for 24 hours, pushed for 3 hours, all with the wonderful support of her doula and birth center. Unfortunately things got harder postpartum.

Dec 17, 2019
427| Doula Processing Secondary Trauma + Homebirth & Peaceful Postpartum - Carrie Murphy

Carrie, an experienced doula, had an unexpectedly emotionally-difficult pregnancy. She worked hard throughout to release secondary trauma from being a birth worker, all in hopes of having a home birth with a truly community-centered birth team.

Dec 12, 2019
426| Cesarean Birth and VBAC Birth Stories - Brittany DuValle

Before getting pregnant with her first child, Brittany had hoped and planned for an unmedicated birth. Due to an unnecessary induction and several interventions her first birth ended in a cesarean. Immediately following that birth, she began preparing for a VBAC.

Dec 10, 2019
425| Five Day Induction after learning about ICP on The Birth Hour - Katie Friedland

At 37 weeks, Katie went in for an induction due to an ICP diagnosis (thanks to learning about it from this show and Nicole Phelps' story!)  Hoping for a very low-intervention birth experience, the team of midwives and nurses were amazing at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Mass in providing as gentle of an induction as possible.

Dec 05, 2019
424| Traumatic First Birth & Redemptive Elective Cesarean Birth Stories - Tash Stokes

Tash shares her two cesarean section birth stories, one traumatic, the other redemptive.

Dec 03, 2019
423| How to Have a 'homebirth' Experience Within the Walls of a Hospital - Shannon Tripp [REBROADCAST]

After Shannon found out she was pregnant with her first, there was no question that she wanted an unmedicated, untouched birth. The questions were: where, and with who.

Nov 28, 2019
422| Dr. Rebecca Dekker of Evidence Based Birth Shares her Birth Stories

Rebecca is the founder of Evidence Based Birth® and the author of Babies Are Not Pizzas: They’re Born, Not Delivered! On this episode she shares two of her birth stories and discusses the impact those experiences had on shaping her life.

Nov 26, 2019
421| Dad Catches Baby on Side of the Road & Homebirth - Hannah Neas [REBROADCAST]

Hannah shares her surprise road side delivery and homebirth stories.

Nov 21, 2019
420| Mom Describes Birth as "Best Outcome in a Worst Case Scenario" - Preeclampsia Induction with Taya Huntley

While planning on an intervention free birth center birth, Taya and her husband prepped by doing the Know Your Options childbirth course. At 39 weeks, Taya was diagnosed with preeclampsia and, after being turned away from a local hospital for refusing certain medical treatments, finally ended up at the university of Washington medical center.

Nov 19, 2019
419| Vasectomy Reversal, IVF Twins, & Planned Cesarean under General Anesthesia -- Katie Mitchell

Katie and her husband, Dave, conceived twins through IVF after four years of intensive fertility treatments.  Katie’s conception story includes a vasectomy reversal, two rounds of embryo generation, miscarriage, embryo loss, genetic studies, and seemingly endless trans-vaginal ultrasounds. 

Nov 14, 2019
418| Hospital Induction, Homebirth Transfer & Two Very Different Postpartum Experiences - Valerie Cronin-Fisher

On this episode, Valerie shares her two birth and postpartum stories.

Nov 12, 2019
417| College Mama’s Empowering Homebirth after Traumatic Hospital Birth - Lina El-Saieh

On this episode, Lina shares her hospital and home birth stories.

Nov 07, 2019
416| Hyperemesis Gravidarum & Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex (D-MER) - Rachel Haseley

Rachel shares her birth story and discusses using the Ava bracelet to get pregnant, as well as being diagnosed with both Hyperemesis Gravidarum & Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex (D-MER).

Nov 05, 2019
415| Teen Pregnancy and Cesarean Births with Kyra of OKbaby

Kyra and her husband Oscar uploaded their first video to OKbaby in 2015. At the time, they were 18 years old and expecting their first child, dealing with the challenges many teen parents face, such as finishing high school and finding financial stability.

After years of sharing their lives with the world (as well as two more babies), they have engaged millions of devoted fans and now host two wildly popular channels and have a massive Instagram following.

OKbaby features the entire family as they share their experiences - from everyday activities to travel and adventure. Fans love watching the family grow and explore life together as they face the challenges of being a young family with love, humor, and tons of fun. Connect with Kyra on Instagram and YouTube.

Oct 31, 2019
414| Queer Birth, Homebirth Cesarean, Gender-Creative Parenting - Carly Sargent-Knudson

On this episode, Carly shares her experience getting pregnant as a queer couple as well as planning for a homebirth that ended up in a cesarean transfer.

Oct 29, 2019
413| Mourning the Loss of One Baby When You're Caring for Her Twin - Valerie Howell

On this episode, Valerie shares her loss and birth stories.

Oct 24, 2019
412| Cesarean Birth for Fibroid Followed by VBAC Birth Story - Mia Burton

On this episode, Mia shares her two birth stories: a c-section and VBAC.

Oct 22, 2019
411| Miscarriage, Placenta Previa and Postpartum Hemorrhage Birth Story - Sierra Palmer

Sierra shares her experience with two early miscarriages as well as her birth story. She discusses being diagnosed with placenta previa, her resulting cesarean section, and postpartum complications afterwards.

Oct 15, 2019
410| Group B Strep Positive - NICU Stay for Bacterial Meningitis - Melissa Korver

After an easy pregnancy with few complications, Melissa endured prolonged labor with Group-B Strep, leading to her son contracting bacterial meningitis after birth. After a three week stay in the hospital, he is now 18 months old and happy and healthy! Melissa dealt with Postpartum Depression and anxiety stemming from her experience, and hopes to shed light on GBS and its possible complications at birth. She hopes to encourage women to be their own advocate and take charge of their own health research as they prepare for pregnancy and birth.

Oct 10, 2019
409| Pregnancy After Eating Disorder, Birth Center Transfer & Homebirth - Erica Ormanovich [REBROADCAST]

On this episode, Erica tells her two birth stories.

Erica planned a birth center birth with her first child. After a low risk pregnancy, she went into labor at 39 weeks and 6 days. After having early labor contractions all night she checked into the birth center at 6 am on November 6th. She labored there all day and eventually started to run a low grade temperature resulting in her midwife risking her out of the practice and insisting on a hospital transfer. After a total of 33 hours, she welcomed her daughter at a Houston Hospital.

After her first birth experience Erica knew she wanted to try again for an unmedicated birth. Thinking her previous hospital transfer was necessary she opted for a group of midwives at a local hospital for prenatal care. After an upsetting encounter with one of the midwives in the group she followed her gut and switched to planning for a homebirth. Erica had another low risk and straight forward pregnancy and welcomed their son at home at 38 weeks and 4 days after only 6 hours of labor.

Oct 08, 2019
408| Fast Unmedicated Hospital Birth - Lauren Alexander

On this episode, Lauren returns to share her second birth story.

Oct 03, 2019
407|Empowering VBAC After Fearful C-Section - Marilys Vega

Mari became pregnant with her second child in September of 2018. After an anxiety-ridden fearful c-section 2 years prior, due to failure to descend, she was determined to have a VBAC!  She experienced a lot of push back from doctors, family, and her partner. Ultimately after facing her anxiety, getting her partner on board and breaking down all her VBAC fears, she was successful in birthing her son via VBAC in May of 2019. She shares the journey of her healing birth, including breaking up with two doctors in her both her second and third trimester and her empowered labor and delivery with a full female staff.

Oct 01, 2019
406| Hospitalized for Hyperemesis, Unmedicated Hospital Birth and Epidural Birth - Claire Swinarski

On this episode, Claire shares her two very different birth stories.

Sep 26, 2019
405| Failed Epidural & Preeclampsia Induction, then a Doula-supported, Healing Hospital Birth - Amy Leigh Fernandez

On this episode, Amy shares her very different hospital birth stories.

Sep 24, 2019
404|Stage 4 Cancer Diagnosis Postpartum and Going on to have Another Baby - Michelle Martyniuk

On this episode, Michelle shares two birth stories and her in-between cancer diagnosis, chemotherapy, and recovery.

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Sep 19, 2019
403| Uneventful Pregnancy, Marathon Labor, and Hard Postpartum - Megan Taylor

On this episode, Megan discusses how her uneventful pregnancy, marathon labor, and difficult postpartum opened her eyes to the various resources within her local birth community and sparked a fire in her to advocate for new and expecting moms about what their options truly are when it comes to pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum.

Sep 17, 2019
402| Empowering Birth Despite Cascade of Interventions - Sarah Deming

On this episode, Sarah shares her empowering hospital birth story.

Sep 12, 2019
401| Three Hospital Births, PPD, & Pelvic Floor Therapy - Annie Davis

Annie has three children with about 2 years between each. She has had a hospital induction with epidural due to being almost 42 weeks with her first, an unmedicated vaginal hospital birth, and a hospital induction to have a specific midwife with her third. Having a male provider for her second birth brought up some unresolved sexual traumas from her past so she did everything she could to heal and find a supportive care team for her last birth. She discusses suffering postpartum depression after her second and third births and pelvic floor issues. 

Sep 10, 2019
400| Neurological Restoration in Pregnancy - Alicia Eastes

Alicia Eastes is a screenwriter/writer, documentary filmmaker, and founding co-President of an emerging chapter of Women in Film and Television International in Austin, Texas. On this episode, Alicia shares her birth story and her experience of neurological restoration through her first pregnancy.

Sep 05, 2019
399| Natural Birth After Three Epidural Births - Gina Kynaston [REBROADCAST]

When I received an email from Gina explaining that after three medicated hospital births, she had successfully had a natural birth with her fourth baby and that she credited listening to other women's birth stories on The Birth Hour, I knew I had to hear her stories. 

Sep 03, 2019
398|Fast Hospital Birth + Navigating Low Breastmilk Supply - Emma Gomez [REBROADCAST]

On this episode, Emma shares the story of her quick hospital birth and the challenges of having a low milk supply.

Aug 29, 2019
397| IUD Pregnancy and Hypnobabies Hospital Waterbirth - Megan Freeland

Megan became pregnant with her first child unexpectedly after 4 years with an IUD. Fortunately, the pregnancy was healthy and viable and continued uneventfully until her son decided to enter the world earlier than she anticipated (37 weeks and 3 days). After being in labor almost a full day without realizing it, Megan made it to the hospital at 10 cm and delivered a healthy baby via waterbirth almost 3 hours later.

Aug 27, 2019
396| Elective Cesarean After Healing from Traumatic Vaginal Birth - Emmalina Rooney

Emmalina experienced a traumatic birth with her first baby and did extensive EMDR therapy to recover emotionally; so, when she found out she was pregnant again, she knew she had a chance to make this birth experience a healing one. After much contemplation, she decided to have a scheduled cesarean. 10 days before her cesarean date, she spontaneously went into labour. A few hours later her baby boy was born by a positive and healing cesarean and she moved through her postpartum period with health and no complications.

Aug 22, 2019
395| Birth Center and Twin Birth Stories - Jesse Coulter

Today's episode features Jesse Coulter who is going to share the birth stories of both her son, born at a birth center, and her twins who were born vaginally in a hospital. The twins' birth story is fast and furious as they arrived before the hospital staff even had a chance to put the IV in Jesse.

Aug 20, 2019
394| Quick Hospital Births & Weeks of Prodromal Labor - Erika Thompson

On this episode, Erika shares her two quick hospital births and discusses the importance of trusting your body.

Aug 15, 2019
393| Unmedicated, Empowering Hospital Births & Postpartum Fever - Aleesha Wiest

Aleesha shares her two birth stories, PCOS, gestational diabetes, and suffering a postpartum fever.

Aug 13, 2019
392| Hospital Birth vs Birth Center Birth - Karyssa Pacheco

Karyssa has known she wanted to be a mother since she was very young so she and her husband started trying for a family right away and now have two girls who are currently 2.5 years and 8 months old. After giving birth to her babies, Karyssa became fascinated with what women's amazing bodies are capable of and she hopes to become a doula herself. Today she shares her two daughter's birth stories, the first born in a hospital and more recently her birth center birth.

Aug 08, 2019
391| Pregnancy and Childbirth After PCOS - Marissa Lawton [REBROADCAST]

Today's birth story episode features Marissa Lawton who discusses getting pregnant with PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) and dealing with fertility treatments.

Aug 06, 2019
390| Getting Pregnant with Ava Bracelet & Precipitous Hospital Birth - Mirah's Birth Story

On this episode, Mirah shares her birth story and experience using the Ava Fertility bracelet to help her conceive.


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Aug 01, 2019
389| Planned C Section for Breech Baby Birth Story - Paige Aaron [REBROADCAST]

Paige lives in Northern California where she is a stay at home mom to her 17 month old son. She had him via planned c-section due to his breech position and was excited to for the opportunity to share her experience and encourage other moms who may find themselves preparing for a planned c-section. (Spoiler alert: she loved it.) She enjoys any time she can get to be creative and crafty. You can catch her blogging periodically at 


Jul 30, 2019
388| The Ideal Epidural Birth Experience - Elana Edwards

Elana's birth story went as she hoped - she had a planned hospital birth with an epidural that was 12 hours start to finish. The doctors & hospital were kind & compassionate, and really helped create a special experience.

Jul 25, 2019
387| Single Vessel Cord, Postpartum Blood Clot and Pulmonary Embolism - Emily Wilke

On today's episode, Emily shares her fourth birth story. After experiencing extreme pain in her foot that traveled to her calf, Emily begrudgingly went into the ER and a HUGE DVT blood clot was discovered in her calf.

Jul 23, 2019
386| Two Unmedicated Hospital Birth Stories - Cristina Bocanegra

Cristina shares her two hospital birth stories.

Jul 18, 2019
385| Birth Center Birth with NICU Transfer for Baby - Kelly Pedrozo

After a healthy pregnancy and relatively normal 12 hour labor, Kelly’s birth took a sharp turn when her baby needed immediate resuscitation after delivery at their birthing center. Her daughter, Emilia, was transported by EMS with her husband to the nearest hospital. Even though her birth was frightening, Kelly felt cocooned in peace and safety by her care team back at the birthing center. Later on in the evening Emilia began to experience seizures. After a substantial amount of testing it was determined that she had bleeding in her brain with an unknown cause. Kelly’s family spent a miraculous four days in the NICU and were able to go home with a healthy baby. In the months following her daughter’s birth, Kelly suffered from some postpartum depression and intrusive thoughts regarding her daughter’s resuscitation and NICU stay. After seeking treatment she has come closer to a place of understanding and empowerment.

Jul 16, 2019
384| Homebirth with NICU Transfer for Meconium Aspiration - Cassandra Barragan

Cassandra always planned to have a homebirth and accidentally took her newly-conceived baby on a 1000 mile motorcycle camping trip before she knew she was pregnant. She had a rather uneventful pregnancy up until the last trimester, when her active baby girl wouldn't stop flipping breech and back up until 39 weeks. She had to make alternate plans in the event the baby decided to stay breech (in the state of California, breech home births are unfortunately illegal); but, fortunately Cassandra was able to stick to her original dream of a birth at home with her entire family present. After 36 long hours of labor (24 of which consisted of strong contractions 2-3 mins apart), Cassandra pushed her baby out in 30 minutes and had a beautiful golden hour with her whole family in the room.

Jul 11, 2019
383| Fast & Furious 1st Birth, Slow & Steady 2nd Birth - Amy Richardson

Amy had a fast and furious birth with her first born: her water broke at 9pm and Eli was born by 1am! With rising blood pressure and transitioning so quickly, Amy blacked in and out of consciousness, but was able to have her planned unmedicated birth. Her nurses joked that she’d need to “camp out” for any subsequent babies, but when Amy delivered her daughter 3.5 years later, she had a very different birthing experience. While both babies came exactly 9 days before their due date, Juniper’s labor was slow and steady and much less chaotic.

Jul 09, 2019
382|Unmedicated Hospital Birth & Homebirth with Breastfeeding Complications - Linnaea Headlee-Borden

On this episode, Linnaea shares her two birth stories and relates complications with breastfeeding after her second.

Jul 04, 2019
381|Infertility, Loss & Preeclampsia Preterm Labor - Jenna-Lee Languirand [REBROADCAST]

When Jenna found out about Ava bracelet she was thrilled to become pregnant again after a year of use! The bracelet helped her and her husband understand her cycle and body better. It taught her what her most optimum days were and, took a lot of the stress out of trying to conceive. She loved that it was very easy to use and see the data daily. Her pregnancy was anything but easy but this she expected.

She ended up having to be hospitalized the last month of her pregnancy due to severe preeclampsia. On the day of her baby shower, Jenna was rushed into an emergency cesarean section at 30 weeks and gave birth to her tiny 3.5 pound rainbow baby boy Wesley Arlo. Jenna and Patrick feel completely blessed to have him and can't wait until he can come home from the NICU. Jenna wanted to share her story to give hope to those who have gone thru similar circumstances

Jul 02, 2019
380| Hospital Births With & Without an Epidural - Ashley Woolsey [REBROADCAST]

Ashley has had three hospital births. They were all different, and she became more and more informed about birth and her options each time. She had an epidural with her first and then was made to wait two hours for her doctor after being fully dilated and ready to push which resulted in a three day NICU stay for her daughter. With her next birth, she really didn't want to be induced but was ultimately scheduled for an induction. For her most recent birth she went in knowing she wanted a natural birth — listen to find out how it went.o find out how it went.


Jun 27, 2019
379| Epidural Hospital Birth & Unmedicated Hospital Birth - Sarah Jones

Sarah had planned on an unmedicated hospital birth with her first child, but eventually got an epidural after becoming frustrated with a difference in cervical checks done by the nurse and the on-call doctor. For her second labor, she decided to try again for an unmedicated birth and decided to hire a doula for extra support. Her second labor was much easier and quicker and she was able to achieve the birth she had hoped for.

Jun 25, 2019
378| Positive Hospital Birth with Amazing Partner Support - Chelsea Lane

A doctor told Chelsea there were no trophies for women who have an unmedicated birth; but, Chelsea felt passionate about having a serene, med-free experience in the hospital. When she had to be induced at 38 weeks with gestational hypertension, her preparation and self advocacy paid off for a successful hypnobirth experience.

Jun 20, 2019
377| Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy (ICP) Birth Stories - Nicole Phelps

Nicole Phelps shares her experience being pregnant while her partner, Michael Phelps, was training for the Olympics. She hired a doula and prepared to possibly give birth without Michael there. A few weeks before her due date, Nicole started experiencing extreme itchiness, especially on the palms of her hands, and was tested for Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy (ICP). However, she went into labor before the results came back. Michael made it just in time, and her son, Boomer, was born healthy. The test result came back positive and she knew she'd have to be on the lookout for another ICP diagnosis with future pregnancies. On this episode, she also shares her second pregnancy and birth story and how her doctor monitored her for ICP leading up to her son Beckett's birth. Nicole wanted to share her story to raise awareness about ICP so other women can be on the lookout for the symptoms.

Jun 18, 2019
376|A Healing VBAC with a Surprise Guest - Allison Lynch

After a traumatic c-section, Allison knew she wanted to try for a VBAC. During her pregnancy she did everything she could to stay healthy, both mentally and physically She found the online birth community and learned everything she could about birth. After 42 weeks, she was induced at the hospital and had the most empowering and healing VBAC while surrounded by her incredible birth team of women and her supportive husband.

Jun 13, 2019
375| Unplanned Cesarean & Healing Postpartum - Lindsay Todisco

Long before even trying to conceive, Lindsey knew she wanted an intervention-free birth. Despite her intentions, research, planning, and extensive preparation, Lindsey and her husband learned their first parenting lesson (you are no longer in control!) at seemingly every turn, from pregnancy through delivery and postpartum.  An induction lead to a 28 hour labor which ultimately ended in a cesarean section. Lindsey spent much of the fourth trimester trying to understand her birth experience and heal physically and emotionally.

Jun 11, 2019
374| Hospital Induction Without Epidural Birth Story - Felicia Bullock

After the OB she loved left the office a month before her due date, Felicia was left having to advocate for her birth plan when the new doctor attempted to scare her into an early induction. She was finally induced at almost 42 weeks. After Cervidil didn’t change anything overnight, Felicia received a small amount of pitocin, which jumpstarted what ended up being her ideal birth without an epidural.

Jun 06, 2019
373| Gestational Thrombocytopenia, ECV, Positive Unmedicated Birth & Retained Placenta - Kate Baldwin

Kate and Andy live in Portland, Oregon, and were delighted to become parents after meeting in college. They were in no rush, after being together nearly 13 years before the birth of their daughter, Caroline, but were thrilled when their pregnancy-journey began so swiftly. Both recognized that is often not the case and felt so grateful because of this! Kate knew she wanted to prepare for an unmedicated birth. She felt good and remained super active throughout her pregnancy. However, at 34 weeks, her pregnancy took a turn when Kate learned her baby was in the breech position. On top of this, Kate had developed gestational thrombocytopenia, which can cause a greater risk of postpartum hemorrhage. With the pending arrival of their breech baby, Kate was fearful this would mean she would have to be put under and have a c-section to deliver. At week 37, in an effort to preserve her wish to have an unmedicated birth, Kate and Andy made the decision to undergo an external cephalic version (ECV) to turn their breech baby and were thrilled when it was successful.

Kate's labor began just shy of 39 weeks, and after a fast journey to transition, Kate stalled at 9 cm for several hours because the baby was posterior. In the end, Kate was proud of her dedication to an unmedicated birth, the preparation she did to be successful, and the choices she made to get to that point. Even so, Kate suffered from a retained placenta that was not discovered until 5 weeks postpartum. She describes the pain and symptoms to watch for so you can advocate for yourself during the postpartum period.


Jun 04, 2019
372| Hospital Birth Story Discussing Perinatal & Postpartum Depression - Haylie Schwartz

Haylie and her husband, Jeffrey, had been married for a year when they decided to try and get pregnant. With many tales from friends and family members that it could take a while to conceive (it was news to Jeffrey that you actually had to "try" to get pregnant) they were surprised when a pregnancy test came back positive only a few months later. Haylie had a history of depression but was adamant about getting off antidepressant medication while pregnant. At first she felt fine, both emotionally and physically. But right around her second trimester, serious signs of depression and anxiety began to creep in. This made for a difficult pregnancy in which Haylie sought help from a number of sources to cope with the mounting feeling that she was unprepared for motherhood. As she prepped for an unmedicated hospital birth, she also battled a constant fear that she wasn't ready to be a mom. As you'll hear on this episode, there were several unexpected twists and turns during Haylie's labor and delivery that ultimately led to an epidural and a long but successful vaginal delivery. Haylie also shares how experiencing depression during pregnancy morphed into postpartum depression and talks about the lifesaving support she received after her son was born.

May 30, 2019
371| Bryn's Mom Shares her 1980s Birth Stories - Linda Williams

My mom was in town for Memorial Day, and I thought it would be fun to have her record her birth stories. She actually has four birth stories, but only shared her first two: my older brother and me. We were both born in the hospital unmedicated with episiotomies. I remember when she first told me her birth stories, the main thing that stuck out was that they were fast! Imagine my surprise when my first labor was over 34 hours! Hear my mom share her experience having hospital births in the 1980s in this episode of The Birth Hour.

Linda Williams is the best-selling author of over two dozen books on science & technology including: Chemistry Demystified; Careers in Forensics; and, 5 Steps to a 5: AP Environmental Science and Nanotechnology Demystified. A former biomedical researcher at NASA-Johnson Space Center and Rice University, Linda now works at the University of Arkansas Medical School in the Research department. She is the mother of Bryn Huntpalmer, founder of this podcast!

This episode is sponsored by CollegeBacker. CollegeBacker is the easiest way to save for college with help from family & friends. In just 5 minutes, you can open a tax-advantaged 529 Plan, and then invite family & friends to contribute – even before your child is born!

Sign up at and receive a $10 match when you start saving for your child, or when you send a gift to kickoff someone else’s college fund.

May 28, 2019
370|Hospital, Birth Center & Homebirth Birth Stories - Tristin Tindall

On this episode, Tristin shares her three, very different, birth stories.

May 23, 2019
369| Vaginal Breech Twin Birth at the Hospital - Jennifer Mancuso [REBROADCAST]

On this episode, Jenn shares the story of how she advocated for, and successfully had, a vaginal twin breech birth.

May 21, 2019
368| Hospital Birth—9 Weeks Postpartum Bleeding - Brooke Borough

Brooke gave birth to baby Shiloh Lane on March 30th, 2018 at 4:12am. Her pregnancy was fairly textbook with the normal aches and pains towards the end. At 40 weeks Brooke and her Husband, Zack decided to allow the doctor to strip her membranes in hopes that that would give the extra bump she needed to get the birth going. Sure enough, 24 hours later labor started at 3:00pm. By 11pm things had really picked up, Zack called the doulas and they agreed that they should head to the hospital. Zack and Brooke arrived at the hospital at midnight where Brooke was checked and was 4cm with contractions 3 minutes apart. At 2:30am Brooke began to feel the urge to push but did not want to inform the nurses because she knew it could be a while of pushing and she wanted to stand as long as possible. At 3:15am the nurses heard she had been pushing and immediately checked her and made it very clear she was NOT to push until she was fully dilated to a 10 (she was only 7cm at this time). Lots of prayers were said during this time and 5 minutes after only being 7cm she was checked again and had fully dilated to 10cm. There was about 20 mins of active pushing and Shiloh was born. She was 9lbs 1oz and mama was left with a pretty significant 3rd degree tear.


Postpartum was a wild ride for Brooke who was not expecting the emotions and physically recovery that was needing to happen. Breastfeeding went well, with the occasional latch issue and fear that baby wasn’t getting enough but going to a lactation consultant set all of their fears aside. Brooke's biggest hurdle was that she had postpartum bleeding for 9 weeks PP which everyone told her was “not normal” after many OB appointments and an extra ultrasound to make sure nothing was retained inside Brooke finally stopped bleeding and soon learned about the importance of seeing a Pelvic floor therapist postpartum.

May 16, 2019
367| Back Labor, Breastfeeding Issues & PPA Followed by Fast 2nd Birth & Postpartum Bliss - Morgan MacDermott

On today's episode, Morgan shares her two birth and postpartum stories.

May 14, 2019
366| 33-Hour Unmedicated Hospital Birth with a Midwife - Sarah Hoddick

Sarah approached birth wanting whatever type of birth her baby needed to arrive safely; but, she did want to start her labor naturally and hired a doula to help her cope with labor. She ended up having a 33-hour unmedicated hospital birth with a midwife! I loved hearing how despite very little birth-preparation, Sarah completely trusted her doula to guide her through her labor and benefited so much from her doula’s knowledge and guidance. She shares some of the positions and tools that were most helpful to her during her long labor at the hospital.

May 09, 2019
365| Planned Cesarean Birth - Allyson High

On today's episode, Allyson shares about her experience with a planned c section birth as a first time mom. She talks frankly about how it felt meeting her son for the first time and how her introduction to motherhood did not go as planned.

May 07, 2019
364| Epidural Lumbar Puncture, Amnioinfusion & Postpartum Spinal Headache - Hannah Moody

Hannah is a first time mom who discovered the birth community during the middle of her pregnancy, and fully embraced it. After lots of research, planning, and self-discovery, she planned for an unmedicated hospital birth with little to no interventions. 

May 02, 2019
363| TTC as a Queer Couple & Homebirth Birth Story - Caitlin Thompson

Caitlin and her wife had a difficult time navigating the barriers faced by queer couples trying to conceive. After two years and many failed IUIs, they decided to take a different route and try at home inseminations with a known donor. She hoped that removing the stress of the fertility clinic would help her body welcome pregnancy. She was right! And shortly thereafter Caitlin finally got the positive pregnancy test she had been longing for.

Apr 30, 2019
362| Accinclitic Baby, Postpartum Hemorrhage & Struggling with Low Milk Supply - Liz Marnik

Elisabeth gave birth to her first child, Owen, on April 5th, 2019. The pregnancy itself was mostly uneventful minus persistent nausea at 20 weeks that caused to switch from OBs to a midwife. Then a follow up ultrasound brought up concerns that Owen had a potential heart issue. This added some worry to the end of the pregnancy and required sticking with OBs. So, then Elisabeth’s plan was to have an unmedicated childbirth in the hospital. Her due date came and went and as her induction date loomed closer.

Luckily, after two acupuncture sessions, labor started on the day of her induction but she developed a high leak in her amniotic fluid. Instead of using any medications, her OB broke her water completely. She went from 1cm to 3 cms in 2 hours, then felt the urge to push 3.5 hours later. After almost 3 hours of pushing, Owen entered to world accinclitic and at 9lbs 1 oz! Elisabeth had an immediate severe postpartum hemorrhage that only got under control after administering multiple rounds of pitocin, misoprostol and methergine. About 2 hours later, she had another bleed that required more medications and eventually two blood transfusions. This may have contributed to her current struggles with low milk supply.

Apr 24, 2019
361| Cesarean Birth, Failed VBAC, No Regrets - Vidita Chopra

After having a fairly easy and healthy pregnancy, Vidita was excited to meet her daughter soon as her due date approached. Unfortunately, she never went into labor and at 41.5 weeks hesitantly agreed to go in for an induction, as recommended by her doctor. Not knowing the strong correlation between inductions and C-sections, Vidita was completely blindsided when her induction stalled and led to a non-emergency C-section due to “failure to progress”.

In the months after her daughter was born, Vidita spent endless hours nursing her round the clock while simultaneously thinking about all the things she would do differently when she became pregnant again. She was convinced that the choices she had made had led to her first C section and she was determined that her birth outcome would be different the second time around. She felt like somehow she had failed by not achieving a vaginal birth. She read all about VBACs and researched everything that could possibly increase her chances of success.

Apr 23, 2019
360| Epidural, Episiotomy & Postpartum Depression Discussion - Heather Brown

Heather is the creator and editor at My Life Well Loved! She created her site out of a deep passion to empower women, inspire confidence, and elevate living a life well loved. She is mom to three year old Leyton and 8 month old Finn, wife to Eric, and healthy lifestyle advocate! Heather is defined by her faith in Jesus, her southern roots, and her deep love for people. She admits she is just learning to balance it all! MLWL is a place where she strive to affirm women, to embrace the balance, get their sweat on, enjoy a glass of wine, and savor the little things. MLWL is a destination for fitness, fashion, mom hacks, wellness tips, travel guides, and most importantly FUN! Heather would love for you to follow along on InstagramFacebook, and PinterestYou can read about her son Leyton's birth here and Finn's birth here.

Apr 16, 2019
359| Preeclampsia, HELLP & NICU Stay - Danielle Foster

Danielle’s birth is not what she expected. Danielle knew she would have a c-section because of a trauma to her hip in the past but she did not expect it to be at 29 weeks. Danielle went in for her 28 week check up only to find her blood pressure dangerously high and traces of protein in her urine. Upon being admitted to the hospital it became increasingly hard to control her blood pressure.

Along with preeclampsia, Danielle was developing HELLP syndrome, causing her platelets to plummet and her alt levels to rise. Eventually it became too dangerous for Danielle to remain pregnant. At 8am on 10/24 the doctor decided it was time to have a baby. Danielle was wheeled into the OR with tears in her eyes. She feared it was too early for her baby.

Apr 11, 2019
358| Placenta Previa and Accreta Diagnosis Birth Story - Kathleen Harrington

On this episode, Kathleen discuses her fertility journey, accreta diagnosis, and cesarean section. 

Apr 09, 2019
357| Positive Homebirth Labor Induction - Phyllis Brasenell
For Phyllis (a once-upon-a-time doula) and Phil (born at home in England) homebirth was an easy decision to make. A trusting midwife and a lot of introspection helped them navigate an unexpected premature rupture of membranes at 41 weeks -- with Phyllis GBS positive and severely allergic to most antibiotics, they waited 30 hours until mama decided she was comfortable augmenting labor. And from there, it was off to the races! After just 4 hours of active labor their daughter, Beatrice, was born at home in the water just as they had hoped.
Apr 04, 2019
356| Three Empowering & Peaceful Births - Melissa Emler [REBROADCAST]

Melissa's children were born in Iowa under the care of midwives but in a hospital setting. In Iowa all midwives who are legally practicing are Certified Nurse Midwives and many of them are providing care within a hospital setting. The hospital that Melissa gave birth at was set up more like a birth center than the typical hospital image that you may have in your head. It had a large tub as well as other comfort measures that aided her with finding more natural methods of coping with labor than typical hospital pain medications. Melissa also practiced Hypnobirthing which really made a big difference with her births and kept her from even considering asking for an epidural.

Apr 02, 2019
355| Navigating Prenatal Care with a Disability + Unexpected Preterm Cesarean Birth - Bek Moody

Bek entered her pregnancy wanting an unmedicated birth. She went with a midwifery group in a hospital because of wanting to be in the best possible place in case she needed help due to her disability. She was confident that her limitations wouldn't be an issue and her midwives were confident in supporting her. But when she went into labor at 34 weeks and her son was in an incomplete breech position and a whirlwind labor, she had to get an emergency c section. Baby and mama were safe and spent 11 days in the NICU before heading home. Even though it was much different than what Bek wanted, they made it through and look back knowing they were safe and didn't have any complications making it home for unlimited snuggles.

Mar 28, 2019
354| Navigating Natural Birth in Hospital Setting - Leah Rodrigues

Leah Rodrigues had two natural, unmedicated child births at the hospital. It was not her first choice to give birth in the hospital but she felt that she didn’t have another option due to insurance. She wanted to share her story and the ways she advocated for what she wanted and navigated the medicalized environment.

Mar 26, 2019
353| Inductions for Cholestasis Birth Stories - Megan Carranza

Megan gave birth to her first child in December 2012. Her only “birth plan” was to get an epidural...unfortunately that didn’t go as planned! When her daughter was born in March 2016, Megan was induced at 38 weeks due to possible cholestasis (ICP). She was able to get her epidural that time and the induction went relatively smoothly. For her last baby, born April 2018, Megan was induced at 37 weeks after it was confirmed she had cholestasis. She delivered her baby girl about 4 hours after the induction process started. Her daughter had to spend about a week in the NICU due to respiratory distress. Between her three pregnancies and births, Megan has dealt with just about every pre and post natal situation there is!

Mar 21, 2019
352| Type 1 Diabetic, Planned Cesarean and Conceiving with the Ava Bracelet - Tara Lee Perez [REBROADCAST]

Tara went into childbirth knowing that she would have a cesarean delivery. As a Type 1 Diabetic, the expected birth weight of her daughter had reached 8 pounds by her 36th week of pregnancy, and shoulder dystocia had already complicated her first delivery. She and her husband, Adam, were informed on May 29th that her delivery had been scheduled… for the very next morning! Lowering blood sugar levels were pointing to possible problems with her placenta, and baby looked good, so all doctors involved agreed that the wait was over!

Mar 19, 2019
351| Megacystis Diagnosis & Homebirth with Hypnobirthing - Caroline Snider [REBROADCAST]

After suffering from an autoimmune condition most of her life, Caroline approached pregnancy with trepidation, initially unsure she would be able to successfully conceive. After becoming pregnant in Fall 2016, her initial elation gave way to concern when a 12 week scan revealed her son was suffering from a condition called megacystis. When not resolved in utero, megacystis proves fatal. Careful monitoring continued until 24 weeks when she was finally given the "all clear" to enjoy a healthy pregnancy. Meeting with a doula around the same time gave Caroline and her husband, Brett, the confidence to pursue a homebirth; and, despite insurance difficulties, they secured the services of an incredible homebirth midwife.

At 38 weeks, Caroline’s waters broke and after an intense but pain free night (thanks hypnobirthing!) her son was born after a posterior labor in the bedroom of their home. When her placenta tore after delivery, Caroline was transferred to the local hospital for a D&C where her impeccable care continued.

Mar 14, 2019
350| Giving Birth in India + Postpartum Care - Sofia Abdul Ali

Sofia shares her experience with the maternity health care system in India as well as her dissatisfaction with her birth experiences and finally the amazing postpartum care she received from family.

Mar 12, 2019
349| January Harshe's Birth Stories [REBROADCAST]

In this episode January Harshe shares her first four birth stories: a cesarean, a homebirth transfer to cesarean, a hospital VBAC after being dropped from care by her homebirth midwife, and a very healing unassisted homebirth. You can hear her 5th and 6th birth stories on her podcast that she hosts with her husband, The Harshe Podcast.

Mar 07, 2019
348| Epidural-Free Hospital Birth - Liesel Teen

After a 20 hour labor, Liesel delivered her son epidural-free at the hospital (and department) where she worked. Liesel battled an OP presentation during labor, with her biggest hurdle being back labor. She stuck it out at home until she was 5cm dilated, and then got admitted to the hospital where she had her doctor break her water. After many position changes, a few doses of IV pain medication, and pushing on hands and knees, she was able to successfully vaginally deliver her son epidural-free. She prepared for her birth by reading countless birth stories, interviewing her co-workers, and studying “Ina May Gaskin’s Guide to Childbirth”.

Mar 05, 2019
347| Two Birth Stories in Paris, France - Gaela Fernandez

Gaela delivered both of her babies in Paris, France. For her first birth, Gaela took HypnoBirthing, the Mongan Method classes, which got her incredibly excited to give birth. She labored at home and kept waiting for the pain to arrive and it never did. Her daughter was born 47 minutes after Gaela arriving at the maternity ward in a birth tub with hardly any water in it! Gaela became a HypnoBirthing instructor after her daughter’s birth. She gave birth to her son 23 months later in a birth center. She was able to deploy all of the techniques that she teaches in order to stay focused and have a peaceful birth. She was able to “breathe” her baby down and have him auto-latch during the sacred hour. She had two distinct yet wildly empowering childbirth experiences.

Feb 28, 2019
346| VBALM Birth Story - Mabel Bashorun

Mabel is 31 years old and lives in Northern Virginia with her husband, Tim, and son, Darasimi. She married her college sweetheart in 2013 and the couple decided to wait for a year before actively trying to get pregnant. After learning she had fibroids shortly after she started her TTC journey, Mabel decided to have a laparoscopic myomectomy done to remove multiple fibroids from within her uterine wall. The journey to get pregnant continued on for another 2 years before she got a positive pregnancy test which was a both a surprise and relief. She had a relatively smooth pregnancy with a few hiccups which included fibroid degeneration and gestational diabetes. Her son was born vaginally in a hospital in September 2018 after a 36 hour labor.
Mabel works as an education specialist for her local school county and enjoys spending time with her close circle of family and friends and learning about birth work. She is also a new doula, ready to support women in advocating for their desires regarding birth and pregnancy. You can find her on Instagram @mabedababe (personal) and @withinherbirth (doula business).

Feb 21, 2019
345| Induction for Intra-Uterine Growth Restriction - Clarice Amorim Freitas

Clarice Amorim Freitas was planning to give birth at a birth center, but at 37 weeks was diagnosed with intra-uterine growth restriction and needed to be induced immediately. They were in the hospital for 39 hours before their little one was born via vaginal birth. The hospital and birth center staff were both incredibly supportive and they had a very positive experience despite the abrupt change of plans. They were able to continue their postpartum care through the birth center even though they did not physically deliver their baby there.

Feb 19, 2019
344| Netherlands and Colombia Birth Stories + 40 Days of Rest - Neram

On this episode, Neram discusses giving birth in Amsterdam as well as Bogata, Columbia, where she was encouraged to enjoy weeks of postpartum rest and care.

Feb 14, 2019
343| Pregnancy and Birth Story with Paraplegia - Rachel Halladay

Rachel had always envisioned herself having an unmedicated home or birth center birth, but when she found out she was considered high risk she knew that wouldn’t be possible. So, she and her fiancé hired a doula and chose a hospital and team that best fit their birth wishes. Rachel delivered her daughter vaginally and unmedicated 3 weeks early and just 14 hours after arriving at the hospital! As smooth as her pregnancy and delivery went, she’s still dealing with some unexpected postpartum complications 3 months later.

Feb 12, 2019
342| Unexpected Down Syndrome Diagnosis at Birth - Kelle Hampton Replay

Kelle shares the story of her daughter Nella's birth. Nella was born with Down Syndrome unexpectedly, so it obviously came as a huge shock to Kelle. Kelle is open about her grief surrounding that initial news. She talks about those first days in the hospital and how little she knew about Down Syndrome before her daughter was born. Her daughter Nella is seven today, and Kelle looks back on her birth story with a lot of emotion, sharing how her family and friends supported her through that time, and how she offers hope to mothers who contact her today when they get a Down Syndrome diagnosis. I loved this episode not only because Kelle tells it so beautifully, but also because I personally was very uninformed about Down Syndrome and learned a lot through her story.

Feb 07, 2019
341| Born Driving Down I-35 Birth Story - Danielle Knapp

When I got the following message from Danielle Knapp, I was brought to tears knowing the affect that this podcast had had on her unexpected birth experience and knew I had to have her on the show! In this episode she shares her experience giving birth while drive down the interstate.

Good afternoon, Bryn.

I just wanted to send you a note to let you know how impactful your podcast was for me!! I listened to your empowering birth stories almost everyday during my third trimester. I laughed and cried and clung to the hopes that I too would have an empowering birth. My first birth was in the hospital and it was 31 hours. An epidural in the last 3 hours after a goal of all natural. I felt defeated and 'less than' bc I couldn't do it.... Well, I gave birth almost three weeks ago to my second daughter. My plan was a to have a peaceful water birth at the Austin Birthing Center. Baby had other plans. I ended up delivering her myself... in the car... on the highway, while my husband was speeding to try to get us to the birthing center on time. I didn't even tell him bc I was afraid he would pull over or crash or I don't even know. I just quietly pulled her up on the back bench of our expedition. I feel like the collective confidence I absorbed through all those women's stories is why it happened the way it did. I was never fearful, and even in the most absurd circumstances, it was still a calm and peaceful experience for both me and my daughter. And best of all, I feel so empowered from the experience.

So thank you for doing what you do! I really am not sure how I would have handled a precipitous birth and highway delivery had I not had all those beautiful women on my mind!


The Knapp's welcomed their first daughter, Piper Clementine on January 20th, 2013. It was a grueling 31 hour labor. Looking for a different experience, Danielle planned to give birth at The Austin Area Birthing Center for baby girl number two. After a precipitous birth, Posey James was born in the car, northbound on Interstate 35 on the way to the birth center in Austin.

Feb 05, 2019
340| Birth Center Twin Birth with Dr. Stu & Hyperemesis Gravidarum - Hannah Mockary

After a long pregnancy battling severe hyperemesis gravidarum, Hannah gave birth to her first son in a birth center at nearly 41 weeks. Ten months later, she became pregnant again, this time with a set of twins! Despite living in a state that considers twins to be a "high-risk" pregnancy, they were able to work with an OBGYN and midwife team to deliver their babies out-of-hospital. She carried her twins for 38+5 weeks until her water broke and they shot out of her body in just 1.5 hours! Hannah struggled with breastfeeding all of her children, due to tongue-ties and tight jaws. She was forced to exclusively pump with her son, but was able to breastfeed her twins successfully after a difficult 3 month journey working with a lactation consultant and occupational therapist.

Jan 31, 2019
339|Blood Thinners, Gestational Diabetes, Fibroid & Hospital Induction - LC Johnson

LC gave birth to her first child on Feb. 22, 2017 (her four year wedding anniversary)! After a complicated pregnancy involving blood thinners, gestational diabetes, and a degenerating fibroid that landed her in the hospital at twenty weeks, LC still hoped to have as natural a hospital birth as possible. Her hopes were dashed when she realized she would need to be induced; but, she was not expecting all the ways that her birth story would ultimately surprise her! After slowly progressing for the first eight to ten hours, she quickly progressed from a 3 to a 10 in only 90 minutes - so soon, in fact, that her husband almost missed the birth when he stepped out to grab a snack!

LC is a writer, activist, and entrepreneur residing in Columbus, OH. She is the founder of Zora's House - the first coworking and community space created by and for women of color in Ohio. In her spare time (what does that even mean?!) LC enjoys reading, watching HGTV, and hanging out at local breweries with her dog, hubby, and two year old son. Connect with her on Instagram at @no1doesitlikelc

Jan 29, 2019
338| Vaginal Delivery on the OR table & Homebirth in the UK - Charity Eyre Wright

Both of Charity’s babies were born in the UK. After excitedly planing for an unmedicated hospital birth centre birth, Charity had to quickly change her expectations when she was told her baby would be delivered via cesarean section. Her body and baby disagreed with the doctor, and her son was born vaginally on the operating table as preparations were being made for surgery. For her second birth, Charity was determined to have a greater ability to advocate for herself and her baby, so she and her husband hired private midwives to help deliver the baby at home. Her second son was born in a birthing tub in the living room of her small flat in central London.

Jan 24, 2019
337| Postdates Homebirth Stories - Mika Rascon

On this episode, Mika shares her three homebirth stories and discusses the importance of advocating for yourself. 

Jan 22, 2019
336| Homebirth to Hospital Transfer Birth Story - Heather Gallagher

Heather shares her experience laboring and pushing at home, until her midwife noticed her baby's heart tones were not recovering after contractions while Heather pushed. She was rushed to the hospital, and the ER doctor on call gave her one chance to push with forceps before taking her in for a cesarean birth. Her son was born with that one push and she describes her hospital experience as being very positive. They spent one night at the hospital before heading home.

Jan 21, 2019
335| Switching from OB to Birth Center at 30 Weeks - Katie Bihl

Katie trained to be a doula 6 months before becoming unexpectedly pregnant on her honeymoon. She always knew she wanted an unmedicated vaginal birth, and switched care providers from an OB practice to a birth center at 30 weeks. She and her husband took hypnobirthing classes while she was pregnant, and they hired their hypnobirthing instructor as a doula. Though labor and birth didn’t progress as she had imagined (does it ever?), she achieved the goal of bringing her baby into the world in a peaceful, sacred, empowering environment, surrounded by love. You can watch her birth video here.

Jan 17, 2019
334| TTC & Vacuum Assistance Birth Story - Meg Ryan

Meg gave birth to her first child at 40w5d on May 15th. After her water broke and labor progressed she experienced over 3 hours of pushing culminating with assistance of a vacuum to help deliver him. Going in without a birth plan and not knowing what to expect, this labor was quite traumatic and postpartum recovery was difficult.

Jan 15, 2019
333|Induction at 42 Weeks - Danielle Walish

Danielle spent her pregnancy reading Ina May Gaskin's seminal texts on natural labor and envisioned having a peaceful, drug-free delivery. Once she crossed the 41-week mark of her pregnancy, Danielle's doctors began talking to her about scheduling an induction. Hopeful that she would go into labor naturally, Danielle begged her doctors to let her go as long as possible to avoid an induction. After some negotiation, they collectively landed on a scheduled induction at 42 weeks. Still convinced she would go into labor naturally, Danielle tried everything to induce. But nothing worked. At 42 weeks, Danielle was induced by her doctor and labored for 13 hours. In the end, her labor was anything but drug-free, but it was somewhat peaceful. She gave birth to a healthy baby girl named Quinnah.

Jan 10, 2019
332| Umbilical Cord Prolapse Birth Story - Arielle Martinez

After every effort to have a holistic, uninterrupted pregnancy and birth, Arielle was induced at 41 weeks due to low amniotic fluid. She went through ten hours of unmedicated labour using hypnobabies techniques and the support of her husband, when her water broke at 9.5 centimeters. When her water broke, the umbilical cord prolapsed and her daughter was delivered by emergency cesarean.

Jan 08, 2019
331| Amazing Supportive Unmedicated Hospital Birth - Sarah Rainwater

Sarah returns to share the birth of her second child.

Sarah gave birth to Braxton Rainwater on July 15th, 2018 at 4:36 a.m.,  after almost 27 hours of unmedicated labor. Braxton was born at 40 weeks and 5 days gestation. Sarah started labor at 1:00 a.m. on Saturday morning. Contractions faded in and out all day Saturday, and active labor started at 7:30 p.m. Saturday night.

Sarah met her midwife (Stephanie) at the hospital around 8:00 p.m. Labor moved slowly, only progressing a centimeter every few hours. Her waters broke at 12:30 a.m. and Braxton was born at 4:36 a.m.

Sarah was able to labor however she needed, utilizing the birth ball, bathtub, and shower. The nursing staff was amazingly supportive of Sarah’s birth wishes and cheered her on every step of the way!

Jan 04, 2019
330| How to Have a 'homebirth' Experience Within the Walls of a Hospital - Shannon Tripp

After Shannon found out she was pregnant with her first, there was no question that she wanted an unmedicated, untouched birth. The questions were: where, and with who.

Jan 02, 2019
329|Lindsey Bliss Shares Her Birth Stories [REBROADCAST]

Lindsey shares her birth center, hospital, and homebirth stories ... and about having twins TWICE! Lindsey Bliss is the co-director of Carriage House Birth, an experienced birth doula, and the mother of seven. Lindsey is considered to be a multiples expert after giving birth to and parenting two consecutive sets of twins. Lindsey takes on her role as a birth doula and childbirth educator with serious passion and commitment. Her mission is to hold space for expectant families through education and informed decision making. Being prepared, and knowing what options are available increases the likelihood of an amazing birth. Lindsey facilitates that process, giving people the tools and inspiration to empower themselves. Her unwavering support and gentle guidance have benefited over two hundred families. Lindsey supports first time parents, multiparas, single parents, LGBT families, twins births, medicated and non medicated vaginal births, cesarean births, and VBACs.

Dec 27, 2018
328| Homebirth Stories & Breastfeeding with Supplemental Nursing System - Rachel Pally [REBROADCAST]

Rachel shares her experiences preparing for and giving birth at home, as well as her struggles with breastfeeding and low milk supply, and using a supplemental nursing system with both of her sons. Looking back, she wishes she had gone easier on herself and wants to let other mothers know that they are doing great.

Dec 27, 2018
327| Hospital Birth With Nitrous Oxide & Birth Tub - L'America Brown [REBROADCAST]

After initially planning on receiving an epidural (due to fear of pain), L’America researched and decided to prepare for a natural, water birth instead. Her fear of pain was overshadowed by her fear of needles, delivery interventions, and the potential lingering effects on mother and child. By using alternative pain management options (nitrous oxide, hydrotherapy, birthing ball, counter-pressure, and aromatherapy) and having a very supportive birthing team, L’America had a 17-hour natural labor and delivery (which included only 28 minutes of pushing) without any complications!

Dec 20, 2018
326| Positive Induction Birth Story - Anna Keller [REBROADCAST]

After a miscarriage, Anna and Kevin were thrilled to learn they were expecting a baby girl. Anna had a wonderfully healthy pregnancy (for which she largely credits the Pure Barre classes she took up until 41 weeks) and was hoping for an intervention-free birth. Baby girl Maggie, as it turned out, was in no rush to make her big debut into the world; and, as the days passed by without progression, Anna started worrying that an induction was in store and might throw off her birth plans. She ended up having to get induced, but Maggie’s birth was ultimately a far faster and better experience than Anna even knew to hope for.

Dec 18, 2018
325| Bryn's Most Recent Birth Story - Bryn and Richard Huntpalmer

So excited to be sharing our most recent birth story. Harvey Huntpalmer was born at home in the water after less than an hour of active labor! If you want to listen to our first two birth stories, Adelaide's is here and Darwin's is here.

Dec 16, 2018
324| Hypertension & 3 Day Hospital Induction + 6 Hour Home Waterbirth - Brie Buxton [REBROADCAST]

On this replay, Brie shares the birth stories of her daughter and son. Late in her first pregnancy, Brie developed hypertension and delivered her daughter on Father's Day after an exhausting 3-day-long induction at Stanford Children's Hospital. And after a thankfully unremarkable second pregnancy, Brie's son was born at home in a birth pool in their dining room after a powerful six hour labor on Valentine's Day.

Dec 13, 2018
323| Three Vaginal Breech Births - Hospital, Birth Center & Homebirth - Jessica Gray [REBROADCAST]

In this replay, Jessica shares her inspiring three breech birth stories, one each at a hospital, a birth center, and her home. 

Dec 11, 2018
322| A Midwife's Homebirth to Hospital Transfer Birth Story - Ami Burnham

Please enjoy a replay of Ami's birth story. I met Ami through her work with Why Not Home?—a documentary about medical professionals that choose to give birth at home. Ami is a midwife, RN, and IBCLC who had planned to have a homebirth with a midwife in attendance, but ended up needing to transfer to the hospital. I love this story because it is so positive despite things not going as Ami had originally planned.

Dec 06, 2018
321| Sarah's Unexpected C-Section - Sarah Hill [REBROADCAST]

Please enjoy a replay one of the first guests to share her birth story on TBH. In this episode, Sarah shares the story of her unexpected cesarean section.

Dec 04, 2018
320|A Doula Shares Her 3 Births - Joyce Dykema

In this episode, Joyce tells all three of her birth stories which included a hospital birth using hypnobirthing and a birthing tub. Joyce had three natural births that share some similarities, but which were also surprisingly different. As a doula, Joyce offers a helpful, informative perspective on birth and doesn't hold anything back!

Nov 29, 2018
319|A VBAC Success Story - Elspeth Riddout McCormick [REBROADCAST]

On this replay, Elspeth tells the story of her second birth, a VBAC.

Nov 27, 2018
318| Bryn & Richard Share 1st Homebirth Story

For those that haven't heard our first baby's birth story yet, I hope you enjoy this episode that I recorded with my husband Richard. We plan to record baby number three's birth story together as well as soon as we get a chance!

Nov 22, 2018
317| Emergency Cesarean Birth & Getting Pregnant with Ava Bracelet - Hailey Walker

The birth of Hailey’s daughter did not go according to plan. After 14 hours in labor, she was told her baby was in distress and she would need an emergency C-section. Needless to say, her carefully laid plan fell quickly by the wayside. After this experience, she feels that no matter how much you read and how many stories you hear from fellow mamas, nothing can prepare you for your own birth story. Hailey also shares her experience using the Ava Bracelet to get pregnant.

Nov 20, 2018
316| Hospital VBAC Birth Story - Elizabeth Quinn [REBROADCAST]

Elizabeth Quinn is married to Percy and they are raising their four children in Jackson, Mississippi. This episode is a rebroadcast of Elizabeth Quinn's return to The Birth Hour to share her most recent birth story with her son, Sims. Elizabeth had two cesareans and then a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) and is really involved in the birth community in Jackson. She is super passionate about being educated about birth and helping women who have had c sections to know their options.

Nov 15, 2018
315| An Emotional Birth Journey to VBA2C - Part 2 - Elizabeth Quinn [REBROADCAST]

Elizabeth Quinn tells the stories of her third birth, a VBA2C.

Nov 13, 2018
314| An Emotional Birth Journey to VBA2C - Elizabeth Quinn [REBROADCAST]

Elizabeth Quinn tells the stories of her first two births, which were unplanned c-sections.

Nov 08, 2018
313| Physical, Emotional, & Spiritual Homebirth - Tricia Phillips [REBROADCAST]

Tricia was shocked to find out she was pregnant shortly after getting back from her father’s funeral. She hadn’t been really trying to get pregnant with her husband but they had agreed to go off birth control. She figured it would take a while, but it didn’t! She has a lot of feelings and things to say about grieving while pregnant, and mostly remembers crying…sleeping…working…and eating ice cream for 9 months. She is forever grateful that home birthing crossed her radar while she was pregnant and feels like the universe was looking out for her and she listened, and it forever empowered her.

Nov 06, 2018
312| Triplets Birth Story with Postpartum Hemorrhage - Desiree Fortin

Desiree delivered her triplets at 34 weeks 1 day, her goal date. Her babies were all about 5 pounds each. Unfortunately, Desiree had some complications after her delivery. She hemorrhaged and needed blood transfusions. Her delivery was certainly not what she anticipated, but she is thankful she and her babies were safe.

Nov 01, 2018
311| Getting Pregnant with IUI, PROM, Surprise Breech Cesarean Birth - Ali Kressner

On this episode, Ali shares her story of getting pregnant via IUI and delivering a surprise breech baby via c-section at a teaching hospital.



Oct 30, 2018
310| Natural Induction Techniques for Almost 43 Weeks Homebirth - Brittney McCright

On this episode, Brittney shares the story of her homebirth.

One day shy of being 3 weeks past due, Brittney and her birth team began natural induction techniques to give her the opportunity to birth her baby at home, just how she had always dreamed it would happen. Labor started at 2:20am with consistent contractions coming every 3 minutes. Brittney labored by herself until it came time to administer the first round of Hibiclens, which was the remedy of choice to combat her Group B Strep.

Once the birth team arrived, the day was spent collaborating as a team to support Brittney as she labored throughout the house, on the birth tub, birth ball, toilet, birth stool, in the shower, and (exhausting all positions) on the bed. Once the second attempt to manually assist her swollen cervical lip was successful, Brittney experienced the fetal reject reflex and their sweet baby was welcomed by her husband’s hands, only to discover they “had a Teagan.” The next hour was filled with the final stage of birth, breastfeeding, discovering how big their Teagan was, dissecting the placenta, and being completely overjoyed their baby was FINALLY with them.

Oct 25, 2018
309| Long Prodromal Labor then Only 5 Minutes of Pushing - Chelsea Johnson

Chelsea was thrilled to conceive her son using the Ava Bracelet and talks about how helpful it was for her. After two weeks(!) of intense back-to-back contractions, Chelsea was induced at 37 weeks. Her son's heart rate started dropping during really strong contractions, and the doctors didn't feel comfortable sending Chelsea home. Her water was broken at around 10 AM on 3/21/18 and at 2:44 PM, after only 5 minutes of pushing, Micah was born.

Oct 23, 2018
308| Bonus Episode: Born Into This

Born Into This is a conference for birth workers and leaders interested in the intersection of social justice, technology and creativity. The conference is an invitation to engage in a public conversation, a call to accountability, and a way to make contact across our differences in service to the past, present, and future of the field and our lives, asking the fundamental question: What were we born into?

Oct 22, 2018
307| Pregnancy After Eating Disorder, Birth Center Transfer & Homebirth - Erica Ormanovich

On this episode, Erica tells her two birth stories.

Erica planned a birth center birth with her first child. After a low risk pregnancy, she went into labor at 39 weeks and 6 days. After having early labor contractions all night she checked into the birth center at 6 am on November 6th. She labored there all day and eventually started to run a low grade temperature resulting in her midwife risking her out of the practice and insisting on a hospital transfer. After a total of 33 hours, she welcomed her daughter at a Houston Hospital.

After her first birth experience Erica knew she wanted to try again for an unmedicated birth. Thinking her previous hospital transfer was necessary she opted for a group of midwives at a local hospital for prenatal care. After an upsetting encounter with one of the midwives in the group she followed her gut and switched to planning for a homebirth. Erica had another low risk and straight forward pregnancy and welcomed their son at home at 38 weeks and 4 days after only 6 hours of labor.

Oct 18, 2018
306| Double Rainbow Babies After Loss - Mariel and Viviana [REBROADCAST]

In honor of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month we are sharing this beautiful story again.

Same-sex couple Mariel and Viviana knew they always wanted a baby; so, a year into their marriage they began trying to conceive by the traditional route of IUI's with frozen sperm via a sperm bank. After nearly a dozen failed tries, they switched gears to a known-donor and were quickly pregnant. Early on in Viviana's pregnancy she began having complications, and on the same day of her anatomy scan at 20 weeks and 6 days, Viviana's water bag prolapsed and broke. Tune in to hear the details of their devastating infant loss due to incompetent cervix and the redemption story of their boy/girl rainbow babies conceived within 7 days of each other and born only three days apart. Follow their journey on Instagram at @moderndaytwins.

Oct 16, 2018
305| Dealing with Insurance, Vaginal Bleeding & Birth Location Change - Spencer Dolan

Spencer's pregnancy less than peaceful. Between complications with the insurance process, anxiety about pregnancy in general, indecisiveness about a birth plan, two hospitalizations due to vaginal bleeding, and unanticipated challenges with her prosthetic leg, Spencer never felt completely at-ease carrying her baby. However, she transferred care from an OB practice to a birth center in her final month of pregnancy, and from that point through her birth, it was smooth sailing. At 39 weeks 3 days, after 24 hours of early labor, 12 hours of active labor, including 2 hours of pushing in the tub, Spencer had an uncomplicated water delivery, and was so relieved to have achieved her exact birth plan with the support of her husband, doula, midwife, and birth assistant.

Oct 11, 2018
304| Transfer in Care During Late Pregnancy Hospital Birth Story - Sara Jones

Sara planned a birth center birth in Greensboro, NC, with Certified Nurse Midwives. However, during her last trimester she finished graduate school and moved to Richmond, VA, with her husband 22 days before she gave birth. She hoped for a low intervention birth with the midwives at the hospital, but ended up choosing an epidural after experiencing back labor. After about 17 hours of labor and pushing for 45 minutes, her baby boy was born perfectly healthy but with a cephalohematoma; basically a very large bump on his head. Despite a strong support system, Sara struggled with breastfeeding and PPD during the fourth trimester.

Oct 09, 2018
303|Known Sperm Donor, Gestational Hypertension & Induction Birth Story - Payton Wilson

Payton’s 18 hour induction hospital birth was completely different than she planned for her entire pregnancy. After battling with gestational hypertension in the last trimester, she feared for her ability to achieve an unmedicated birth when a spike in blood pressure caused her to be induced at 38+5. Her daughter was posterior her entire labor & although she had help from some IV medication, she went on to birth her daughter with out an epidural & less than 2 minutes of pushing.

Oct 04, 2018
302| Empowering Birth with Women Despite Military Husband Being Away - Natalie Curran

First-time mom Natalie had a beautiful but emotionally challenging pregnancy during which she was separated from her husband, an officer in the US Army, from week 20 onward. Due to a required military training course that did not go quite as planned, Natalie’s husband was unable to attend the birth of his daughter and didn’t end up meeting her until she was almost 3 weeks old. Despite these disappointing circumstances, Natalie had an incredible birth experience surrounded by her mother, sister, doula, and team of midwives at her birth center. Her daughter Cecilia was brought into the world surrounded by strong, caring women who supported and loved Natalie throughout her 21 hours of unmedicated labor with almost 3 hours of pushing at the end.

Oct 02, 2018
301| Type 1 Diabetic, Planned Cesarean, and Conceiving with the Ava Bracelet - Tara Lee Perez

Tara went into childbirth knowing that she would have a cesarean delivery. As a Type 1 Diabetic, the expected birth weight of her daughter had reached 8 pounds by her 36th week of pregnancy, and shoulder dystocia had already complicated her first delivery. She and her husband, Adam, were informed on May 29th that her delivery had been scheduled... for the very next morning! Lowering

Sep 27, 2018
300| Shoulder Dystocia and Neonatal Resuscitation Homebirth Story - Sigrid Chapman

This episode features the story of Sigrid’s most recent birth (of 5) in May 2018—the homebirth of her 11 lb 6 oz son—complete with 4 minute shoulder dystocia and 6 minute neonatal resuscitation.

Sep 25, 2018
299| IUI Fertility Treatment Resulting in Triplets Pregnant & Birth Story - Jody Wilson

Although Jody and Jeremy went through fertility treatment (IUI – intrauterine insemination,) they were told their chances of the procedure’s success was less than 20% due to small follicle size. Along with their physician, they decided to proceed anyways. After positive pregnancy tests and blood tests, it was confirmed the procedure was a success!

Jody experienced a significant amount of bleeding. After about 8 weeks, she and her husband went in for an early ultrasound to see if there was a reason for the bleeding. The doctor confirmed that triplets were the reason. Jody had a fairly insignificant pregnancy by triplet standards. No official bed rest or major medical issues.

Sep 20, 2018
298| Two Unmedicated Hospital Births, Adoption Story & Vasectomy that Reversed Itself - Leanne Johnston

Leanne's first child was born at 41 weeks in an unmedicated hospital birth with a nurse mid-wife group. She labored for about 7 hours before Wesley came flying into the world. Her middle child, Eloise, joined their family via open infant adoption. Leanne and her husband were present for her birth and received their daughter in the hallway just minutes after her induction and vacuum-assisted delivery. Her 3rd child, Thomas, entered their family after a surprise post-vasectomy pregnancy. He was born at 40 weeks and 3 days, after 2.5 weeks of prodromal labor, in the same hospital as his older brother and with the same mid-wife group. He was born after about 90 minutes of active labor in an unmedicated birth.

Sep 18, 2018
297| Adoption & Posterior Baby Birth Story with PROM - Kavisa Wood

Kavisa and Sky talked about adoption even before they married. They set goals for building a blended family. Five years into their marriage, the timing and details aligned, and they became licensed for foster care and adoption. When Kavisa, who is normally an overthinker who spends days researching all the angles before making decisions, first saw a photo of their daughters she immediately knew. They met their two daughters for the first time in August 2015, officially adopting them in April 2016.

Exactly 1 year and two days after Kavisa and Sky legally adopted their two daughters from foster care, their son was born. He took his sweet time arriving sunny side up with a head tilt (occiput posterior and asynclitic). He refused to follow any of Kavisa’s plans for birth. Kavisa planned for a water birth without any medical inventions or drugs. Her son decided that even though his comfortable womb home of amniotic fluid started leaking on Tuesday, he would stay inside an extra 5 days... and only after 3 days of labor. Inadequate dilation, fetal station/presentation, kidney function failure, and chorioamnionitis meant Kavisa and her son ended up needing medications, an epidural, and a fetal vacuum. However, after all the drama her son immediately latched seconds after birth. Their family 5 is a “real family” and full of love.

Sep 13, 2018
296| 911 Call Roadside Delivery - Jerika Crews

Jerika planned a hospital birth with her first. She saw an OBGYN and had a very textbook pregnancy. Her water broke the evening of July 2nd, 2016 and contractions started when she was given Pitocin. Her labor and delivery were very textbook as well. She experienced a lot of pain for about two weeks after giving birth which influenced her to opt for an unmedicated birth for her second child. She had been going to a midwife and was planning to deliver at a birth center. Her second pregnancy was very textbook as well.

Unlike her first pregnancy, she did experience some Braxton hicks and cramping for about three weeks before she went into labor. The morning of May 18th, 2018, Jerika started having contractions that eventually turned into active labor. By 1:30 pm she called her husband to come home from work and things escalated quickly. He arrived at 1:45 pm and by 2:00pm contractions were only minutes apart and very intense. They quickly got in the car to make the 30 minute trip to the birthing center. 10 minutes into the drive her water broke and she quickly realized they were not going to make it. Her husband called 911 and was instructed to go to the nearest hospital. While in route to the hospital they realized they they wouldn't make it there either. The operator instructed them to pull over and walked her husband through the delivery of their second daughter. Paramedics arrived about 5 minutes after their daughter was born and they were transported to the hospital only a mile down the road.

Sep 11, 2018
295|Birth Center Birth & Unmedicated Hospital Twin Birth - Lisa Jay

When Lisa and her husband, Johnny found out they were expecting their first child, she knew she wanted to have an unmedicated birth in a birthing center. After a pretty uneventful pregnancy, she was overjoyed to have the labor of her dreams. Lisa was thrilled to catch their daughter and the new parents were happily sent home after a brief stay at the center.

Just shy of a year later, Lisa and Johnny found out they were expecting again and they knew they’d have baby #2 at the birthing center. But, as fate would have it, Lisa became “high risk” when they learned that twins were in their future. Unable to deliver at a birthing center and living in a state were homebirths were illegal, Lisa had to face one of her biggest fears: giving birth in a hospital. The couple was faced with opposition from the medical staff and although there were some twists and turns along the way, she succeeded in having two more unmedicated births!

Sep 06, 2018
294| Gestational Thrombocytopenia & Precipitous Labor - Scarlet Kelly

Scarlet was surprised, but excited, to find she was pregnant with her second child after it took 10 months to conceive their first. Her two pregnancies and births were different in almost every way, except for another unfortunate gestational thrombocytopenia diagnosis. Still, mom and baby remained healthy throughout the pregnancy. Labor surprised them by starting 3 days before her due date (Scarlet was 9 days late with her first), and only lasted for 2.5 hours. Her OB arrived just minutes before baby Lucy was born! Scarlet was able to avoid another manual placenta extraction and blood loss, and everyone went home healthy the next day - a very happy ending to a completely different pregnancy, labor, and delivery.

Sep 04, 2018
293| Fever in Labor and Emergency Cesarean Birth - Nicole Roberts

What began as a rather typical pregnancy ended in a slightly complicated birth. Nicole was one week past her due date, and had an induction scheduled, when she went into labor in the early hours of her birthday. She labored at home for six hours before she and her husband Christopher made their way to the hospital.

Aug 30, 2018
292|Homebirth Postpartum Transfer & Healing Second Birth in Hospital - Nikkie Kent

After suffering a chemical pregnancy, Nikkie was determined to learn more about her birthing options and to become an advocate for her own healthcare. As a result, she chose to have her first child at home. After four hours of pushing, her baby boy was born, but her placenta was retained and would not deliver naturally. She was transferred by ambulance to the local hospital where medical staff attempted to extract the placenta manually; but, they only managed to remove half, which caused her to hemorrhage. Nikki had to undergo general anesthesia to have her placenta successfully removed. After a double blood transfusion, she was sent home, with her baby boy, to recover. The whole experience was in stark contrast to the low-intervention home birth she’d hoped for.

Two years later, Nikkie discovered she was pregnant again, but when the results of her 10-week blood test came back abnormal, she learned that the blood transfusion she’d received in the hospital had caused her body to create an antigen that could put her pregnancy at risk. Thankfully, her baby girl did not carry this antigen and her pregnancy ended up being normal. Through hypnobirthing, Nikkie was able to overcome her birthing fears created by the trauma following her son’s delivery. In an empowering and healing hospital birth, Addison was born in under three hours on a beautiful day in May.

Aug 28, 2018
291| Hypnobirthing, Meconium, Induction & Failed Epidural - Andrea Cox

Andrea used hypnobirthing for her two births. Her births were similar in that they both lasted about 8 hours with 20 minutes of pushing. Her first birth to her daughter ended with meconium presenting and a third degree tear. Her second birth was started via induction. After a failed epidural, Andrea gave birth to a surprisingly huge 10lb 12oz boy.

Aug 23, 2018
290| Non-Emergency Cesarean Birth + Healing VBAC - Larissa Krutewicz

Larissa shares two birth stories: a non-emergency c-section w/ a traumatic week of complications following birth; and, a redemptive, healing VBAC birth w/ zero complications.

Aug 21, 2018
289| Vaginal Breech Twin Birth at the Hospital - Jennifer Mancuso

On this episode, Jenn shares the story of how she advocated for, and successfully had, a vaginal twin breech birth.

Aug 16, 2018
288|Unexpected Birth Outcomes and Why Choice is so Important - Natasha Marchand

Natasha (COO of bebo mia inc and Baby & Me Fitness) is a super talented creative genius that turned her passion for babies and fitness into a lifelong career. On this episode, Natasha shares two birth stories: a planned homebirth with a transfer to the hospital where she still felt supported; and, a cesarean section where she felt like a lot of choices were taken away from her

Aug 14, 2018
287| Miscarriage, Placenta Previa and Premature Cesarean Birth - Erika Cazeneuve

On this episode, Erika discusses her three pregnancies and the birth of her son.

Aug 09, 2018
286| Orgasmic Birth - Shalome Doran [REBROADCAST]

On today’s episode, Shalome Doran shares the stories of her three births. The first was a highly medicalized hospital birth, and the second two were homebirths, one of which was actually an orgasmic birth!

Aug 07, 2018
285| Second Homebirth & First Waterbirth - Bryn Huntpalmer [REBROADCAST]

My son was born at home in Oregon with a wonderful midwife in attendance. My labor was FAST and was a walk in the park compared to my 34 hour labor with my daughter but that story is for another day! After my first homebirth with my daughter, I knew I wanted another homebirth and I was really interested in having a waterbirth. I wasn’t able to give birth in the water with my daughter and I felt strongly that it would be really helpful to be in the birthing tub during the transition and pushing stage.

Aug 02, 2018
284| Castor Oil Postdates Birth & Hospital Water Birth - Julie Tobi

In trying to avoid medical induction, Julie consulted with her doula about drinking castor oil to bring on labor. That night castor oil worked some labor magic and brought on contractions. Julie was able to labor at home, then labor in a birthing tub at the hospital. She turned inward and found a tapping/counting/breathing rhythm to work through contractions. After about 14 hours of labor and 2.5 hours of pushing she birthed her baby girl. Delivering the placenta was challenging and Julie hemorrhaged 30 minutes postpartum. Medical intervention stopped the hemorrhage and, while incredibly scary for everyone (especially Julie's husband), everyone was okay.

Julie's second birth moved more quickly when labor began with spontaneous water breaking three days after her due date. Even though things moved quickly, she left the hospital to labor at home when she learned she was 1.5cm dilated. Julie transitioned in the shower at home and things really started move fast. She was 9cm when she got back to the hospital, labored in the tub and ultimately had a water birth, giving birth to her son after pushing through 2-3 contractions. Her baby boy slept on her chest skin-to-skin for five hours after being born.

Jul 31, 2018
283| Unmedicated Hospital Birth, Precipitous Birth, & Homebirth Stories - Kaitlyn Lowery

Kaitlyn's first birth was a beautiful, empowering, unmedicated vaginal birth with a hospital midwife practice. She expected and planned for a similar birth with her second, but learned that each pregnancy really is different after going much later than she expected and ultimately having a precipitous birth (complete with mad dash to the hospital over frozen streets). Committed to avoid a birth only assisted by her two toddlers, she planned, and had, a home birth for her third.

Jul 26, 2018
282| Three Births from the Perspective of a Military Family - Carolyn Winn

On this episode, Carolyn tells her three birth stories: two natural hospital births (one with a negative doula experience,) and an empowering homebirth. She also describes the challenges of traveling internationally for work while pumping, and recovering from diastasis recti after her third birth.

Jul 24, 2018
281| Getting Pregnant with Sperm Donor & Positive Pitocin Induced Birth - Lauren Alexander

Lauren's first birth was a precious, yet invigorating experience. Her water broke before active labor began and, because there was meconium in the water, she was admitted into the hospital before contractions really began. She set out wanting to have an all-natural birth in which she labored as long as possible at home, but accepted her doctor’s recommendation to use Pitocin to progress her labor and avoid risks of infection. It was a happy, safe and fulfilling experience despite the fear that was produced for her about the use of Pitocin in leading to complications. She hopes this experience relieves fears others have about using Pitocin and epidurals when necessary.

Jul 19, 2018
280| Hospital Birth with Epidural in UK after TTC Struggles - Claire Lycett

Claire is 6 foot, so she was never going to have a small baby; however, she only started to worry when she went a week overdue. Claire was pretty sure her baby was going to be massive, and she was. Both Claire and her husband, Rich, had decided to go Team Green and so only knew they were having ‘a baby’. Both expected a boy, but having had three early miscarriages prior to the birth, neither honestly cared so long as the baby was healthy. Claire was feeling very grumpy the day she went into labour. She had some scares, which turned out to be Braxton Hicks warm ups, and so she went for a long waddle to Tesco where she was poo’ed on by a bird. That afternoon, she started to go into early labor. Having sent Rich off to bed (the philosophy being at least one of them would get some sleep) Claire then labored long into the night, until she was told to come into the hospital at 4am by her midwives. Early assessment showed Claire was actually slowing down, so she and Rich were sent up to ‘Level 5’ of the hospital where they waited it out for a further 20 hours without sleep or drugs. Even meptid given at 12am on that second night didn’t touch it. This wasn’t fun, as Claire was pretty sure she was in established labor despite the long waits between strong contractions.

She was right, and at 5am Claire was finally sent to delivery by a very bossy and wonderful chief midwife. Here she was given an epidural and was looked after by two young, bubbly midwives, Daisy and Amy. You’re not meant to have a party in a delivery room, but they did anyway. With the help of drugs to speed the contractions on and having her waters broken for her, the baby made its way down the birth canal. 9 hours later it became clear Claire needed an episiotomy. Artemis popped out very quickly and amazed everyone when they realized she was a girl, not the expected boy (Claire was secretly very chuffed). Cuddles and nursing were done while Claire was stitched (Artemis will still to this day try to root on Rich) and the parents were lucky enough to be left in the delivery room to sleep until they were moved up to a ward. The whole thing was very relaxed!

Jul 17, 2018
279| Victorious Homebirth with an Unexpected Episiotomy - Libby Tedder Hugus

In this episode, Libby shares what she calls her "Victorious Homebirth which included an Unexpected Episiotomy; and, a surprise but necessary hospital stay for jaundice one week postpartum." 

Jul 12, 2018
278| 72 Hour Hospital Birth & Postpartum Depression - Bianca Sprague

On this episode, Bianca shares the birth story of her daughter, the ups and downs of her 72-hour labor, and suffering postpartum depression.


Jul 10, 2018
277| Unmedicated Twin Birth after Cholestasis Diagnoses - Molly Savage

Molly knew she wanted to try for an unmedicated birth before she became pregnant. When she found out she was having twins though, she wasn’t sure if she would be able to have the birth that she wanted. She educated herself on pregnancy and birth by taking Bradley method classes, and sought out other twin moms who had unmedicated births and listened to their stories. These two things greatly encouraged her and made her feel like it was possible. She switched doctors halfway through, developed cholestasis, and twin B was breech, but in the end she was still able to have the birth she had dreamed of.

Jul 05, 2018
276| Surrogate for High School Best Friend Birth Story - Dana Hawkins

This birth, for Dana, was as much about the process to become pregnant and the relationship with the father as the birth itself. Dana and Chad met their freshman year of high school, when Chad asked Dana to go to the Fall Formal dance. They quickly became best friends, and have remained so ever since. And 20 years after they met in high school, Dana gave birth to a girl for Chad and his husband Jim.

Being a surrogate came with different legal, psychological, and emotional ramifications for Dana than her other births. And the birth itself ended up having some complications.

Going from a perfect check up on a Wednesday to developing severe pre-eclampsia and HELLP syndrome by Saturday, Dana had to be induced at 35 weeks. But she still thinks of it all as one of the most magical experiences she has gone through, and has an even more special bond with the father that she could have ever imagined.

Jul 03, 2018
275| Getting Pregnant, 48 Hour Labor + Postpartum Preeclampsia - Lindsay Meisel

After an easy pregnancy with no complications, Lindsay had an intense, 48-hour back labor with four hours of pushing. The first half was at home with her husband and a doula, and the second half was in a hospital with an epidural. After the baby was born with the cord wrapped tightly around his neck, he was immediately whisked away to the NICU where he stayed for a week of monitoring and therapies to reduce the likelihood of brain injury (turns out he's totally fine!). During his week-long stay in the NICU, Lindsay had some unexpected health issues of her own: she developed severe postpartum preeclampsia, with no warning signs at all.

Jun 28, 2018
274| Peaceful Epidural Birth & Surrogacy for Two Dads - Nicole Gricius

Nicole’s first birth was a positive, peaceful experience. She gave birth in a hospital with an OB she trusted, and felt that having an epidural helped her to relax and be present as she brought her daughter into the world.

Nicole’s second birth was only 16 months after the first. Her plan going into the birth was to do things about the same as the first time... which ended up with a-less-than-magical birth experience. Nicole was in love with her son, but also knew that she hoped she could get a chance to have a different kind of birth experience.

Nicole decided to be a gestational surrogate, and carried twins for two international dads. She was able advocate for herself and to have the unmedicated twin birth she hoped for at the hospital where she works, and had a great birth and surrogacy experience.

Jun 26, 2018
273| Precipitous First Birth & Longer Second Birth - Allison Yarrow

Allison had a precipitous labor and nearly gave birth in the back of an uber. Her water broke and two hours later she was holding her daughter. When she gave birth to her son two years later, it actually took longer. But she was glad about that.

Jun 21, 2018
272| Birth Center to Hospital transfer for Gestational Thrombocytopenia - Scarlet Kelly (REBROADCAST)

For today's episode, we're revisiting Scarlet's powerful hospital birth story.

Scarlet originally planned to give birth at a birth center, but those plans changed close to the end of her pregnancy when she received a gestational thrombocytopenia diagnosis.Still, Jane’s birth was a very powerful, intense, yet rewarding experience. At 41.5 weeks, Scarlet's labor started in the middle of the night and progressed quickly, but stalled after her hospital check-in. Scarlet's doctor ended up breaking her water, which jump-started her labor again, and her daughter, Jane, was born soon after. A retained placenta led to a manual extraction and extra blood loss; but, everyone went home healthy the next day. But only 4 days later, Scarlet's family was back in the doctor’s office due to a thyroid problem that showed up on Jane’s newborn screen.

Jun 19, 2018
271|Hypertension & 3 Day Hospital Induction + 6 Hour Home Waterbirth - Brie Buxton

On this episode, Brie shares the birth stories of her daughter and son. Late in her first pregnancy, Brie developed hypertension and delivered her daughter on Father's Day after an exhausting 3-day-long induction at Stanford Children's Hospital. And after a thankfully unremarkable second pregnancy, Brie's son was born at home in a birth pool in their dining room after a powerful six hour labor on Valentine's Day.

Jun 14, 2018
270| Spina Bifada and Successful Fetal Surgery - Chamblee Madani

On this episode, Chamblee shares the surgery and birth stories of her daughter, who was diagnosed with spina bifada. 

Jun 12, 2018
269| Homebirth, Miscarriage, & Twin Birth Center Birth Stories - Jennifer McLennan

On this episode, Jen, a trained doula, shares two birth stories and her experience with loss. 

Jun 07, 2018
268| Emergency Cesarean after Preeclampsia & VBAC Induction - Amarachi Ukazim Bard

On this episode, Amarachi shares her two birth stories. She had an uneventful pregnancy with her firstborn, but a very eventful emergency c-section at 32 and 6 due to severe preeclampsia, including: a 48 hour magnesium sulfate drip; a 26 day NICU stay for her baby; and, PPD upon arrival home. During her second pregnancy, which was considered high risk due to her previous delivery, Amarachi had morning sickness from weeks 5-28. At week 28, she was diagnosed with gestational diabetes (non-insulin-dependent). Amarachi was induced at 39 weeks; and, after a 43.5 hour labor, she had a successful VBAC delivery!

Jun 05, 2018
267| Surprise Breech + Two Postdates Births with Doula - Callie Christensen

Callie's first birth was a planned water birth that ended up a surprise breech delivery. It was a terrifying experience that no one saw coming; but, with the help of the right on-call OB, Callie safely delivered her first son in a breech position.

After that experience, Callie knew a doula was necessary for her next pregnancy so she would feel more emotionally supported and prepared going into the unexpected. She found Mal Warning and immediately clicked with her based on her previous experience working in Special Education. With her pregnancy going 12 days overdue, Callie relied heavily on Mal for information to make informed decisions about how to proceed as her medical team pressured her to be induced. Her second birth was an unmedicated delivery, and the best experience overall.

For her third and last birth experience, Callie again found herself in a similar position of being overdue by 14 days when she was being pressured into induction by her midwife. With the assistance of Mal again, Callie went in with a similar plan as for her second birth; but, it didn't turn out the same way and pitocin was used to start induction. The drug created a very intense third and final birth experience that Callie thinks back on and is happy she never has to do again.

May 31, 2018
266| Transgender Dad Shares his Pregnancy & Birth Story - Trystan Reese

Trystan and Biff adopted their niece and nephew (both survivors of an abusive situation), and that story was featured on WNYC's parenting podcast, The Longest Shortest Time. Suddenly, the young couple found themselves sharing the lessons they learned, becoming parents under such stressful circumstances, with many people across the country. Then they decided to grow their family by having their own biological child—one that Trystan carried and birthed himself. As a transgender man, he has all the parts necessary to give birth in a safe manner. He stopped taking his hormones, and he and Biff successfully conceived and had a beautiful, happy baby.

May 29, 2018
265|Postdates Birth Center Birth, Cesarean Birth & Homebirth VBAC - Jessica Higgins

For her first birth, Jessica and her husband chose an out of hospital birth center and they welcomed their daughter Josie after a 41 week and 6 day long pregnancy. Her second birth was with the same midwives; but, due to cord issues, their son Elliott was born in the hospital by c-section. After a cross country move half way through her third pregnancy, Jessica and Chris decided they wanted to attempt a homebirth VBAC. At 40 weeks and 6 days, and after a week of prodromal labor, Jessica finally went into active labor while out at a pizza place with her family! After a very intense 8 hours of back labor, she pushed for 8 minutes and her third baby, 10lb 7oz Ian, was born at home with the help of their amazing midwives.

May 24, 2018
264|Unmedicated Hospital Birth with AROM - Julia Carrion

Julia planned for an unmedicated, hospital water birth. After having to have her water artificially ruptured and finding meconium, the water birth was no longer an option. After laboring for nearly 26 hours, pushing for 4.5 hours and narrowly avoiding a c-section, Julia was able to have an unmedicated vaginal birth.

May 22, 2018
263| OB Hospital Birth & Midwife Hospital Birth Stories - Juliana Ramirez

Juliana got pregnant in her senior year of her BA. As an international student she was not very acquainted with the medical system in Ontario and opted for what was the most familiar option to her: OB care. During her pregnancy, she became more aware of her options and decided to try an unmedicated birth. Unfortunately, she feels she did not have the right support system for this; and, though the birth occurred with no complications and Hugo was born a happy and healthy baby, she realized that her choice of hospital had not been the right decision for her: not only did she and her husband not feel supported, but they had to face many administrative obstacles.

For her second baby, Juliana and her husband decided to have a midwife attend their birth at a different hospital. Xavier’s birth could not have been any better. Three hours after the delivery they were able to go home with their new baby. Abbir and Anita, their midwives, came to do home visits and supported them through this new stage in their lives.

May 17, 2018
262| Homebirth After 3 Hospital Births - Nicole Vandenberg

On this episode, Nicole shares her four very different birth stories. 

May 15, 2018
261| Homebirth & Surprise Unassisted Hospital Bathroom Birth - Jasmine Wilde

Jasmine’s first birth story was an amazing heartfelt home waterbirth —while her second birth left her in literal shock. Jasmine gave birth to her baby girl on the hospital bathroom floor, unassisted. Jasmine goes through her journey of many hardships in such a short amount of time — from having her delivery bag stolen while in labor and not having the hospital water-birth she had planned, to struggling through back pain, diastasis recti, and an umbilical hernia after giving birth to two children 14 months apart.

May 10, 2018
260| Homebirth Cesarean + Homebirth VBAC - Gina Giordano

Gina Giordano, of Doula Training International, shares her homebirth-cesarean and homebirth-VBAC birth stories.

May 08, 2018
259| Premature Rupture of Membranes Birth Center to Hospital Transfer - Nalani Jolly HIll

After planning a calm birth center birth with no interventions, Nalani found herself in a hospital setting being induced after her water broke prematurely.

May 03, 2018
258| Lesbian Single Mom by Choice - Jenn Poupard

On this episode, Jenn shares the birth story of her son, Wallace, who was conceived with the help of a known-donor Jenn met through the Known Donor Registry. After a medically uneventful pregnancy, Jenn gave birth to Wallace at 41 weeks 5 days. Labor began with mild contractions on the way to the second NST; continued with a dramatic rupturing of waters; and, ended with a Pitocin induction 24 hours later. Jenn was determined to have an unmedicated birth and had the support of her parents, her doula, and her CNM in order to stay empowered through her long and difficult labor.

May 01, 2018
257| Hyperemesis Pregnancy & Peaceful Cesarean Birth - Desiree Charles

Desiree Charles is a 32 year old wife, new mom, and young professional. She has been married to her husband for 3 years and enjoys her job, spending time with friends, and a nice glass of wine. She and her husband had not been trying very long when they got pregnant. Unfortunately the pregnancy was not what either of them expected and Desiree suffered from severe hyperemesis gravidarum. After several hospitalizations, Desiree gave birth to a healthy baby girl.

Apr 26, 2018
256|Infertility, IVF, Twins and Homebirth Birth Stories - Ashley Izsak

After receiving devastating news about their chances of conceiving due to a severe case of male factor infertility, Ashley and her husband Andrew were thrown into the unknown world of infertility. Ashley of @ashleyizsak found out she was pregnant on her 28th birthday from their first round of IVF with ICSI. Two weeks later, on new years eve, they found out she was expecting mono di twins.

From the start, Ashley struggled with her desire to do things as naturally as possible while being told delivery would take place in an OR with a team of about twenty people. At 20 weeks, they discovered her cervix was shortening and at 24 weeks, they gave her steroid injections to help mature the babies' lungs. Surprising everyone, she went on to carry the twins past her due date and successfully delivered her twins vaginally at the hospital in an OR.

For five years, they were a happy family of four; yet, every December a bill arrived reminding them of their frozen embryo that remained at the fertility clinic. Ashley struggled with first wanting another baby, then feeling done, and then finally wanting to try for that third baby. In a crazy coincidence, the third embryo would be transferred into Ashley exactly six years later, to the day. At 20 weeks, she and her husband made the decision to switch to midwifery care and pursue a homebirth. Hours shy of the twins sixth birthday, Ashley gave birth at home, in a birth pool, to a beautiful baby boy.

Apr 24, 2018
255| Epidural Birth and Unmedicated Hospital Birth Stories - Anita Young

Anita and her partner, Brian, were initially surprised by their pregnancy. After six months of trying to conceive, they both weren’t sure they could. After delivering her son via a vaginal birth (with an epidural) in 2009, Anita desired to have an unmedicated birth with her next child.

Apr 19, 2018
254| Birth Center Hypobabies Birth Story - Tori Rerick

Tori shares the story of her peaceful, unmedicated birth at Mountain Midwifery in a birthing pool. After laboring at home, she and her husband made the drive to the center to meet her doula. Spending a majority of the time in the water, Tori drew on her Hypnobabies wisdom, physical support of her husband and emotional support of her doula. After a few hours of labor and transition she pushed 3 times and her son was in arms. Hours after that, the family of 3 returned home for post-partum bonding.

Apr 17, 2018
253| Stillbirth, Rainbow Baby Waterbirth and Accidental Unassisted Birth Stories - Heidi Kim

After losing her first daughter to stillbirth, Heidi had a complicated pregnancy journey to her second birth. But the storm clouds lifted when she heard her rainbow baby's first cries after a long and difficult, but empowering, waterbirth that led her down the path of becoming a birth doula. Despite having been to many births by the time she had her 3rd, Heidi was completely shocked when she didn't recognize her own labor signs and ended up having a surprise, accidental, unassisted homebirth on her toilet with nobody around but her 3 year old. But things got complicated when the ambulance showed up.

Apr 12, 2018
252| Long, Hard Labor Followed by Empowering Second Birth - Kelly Oriard

Kelly's first birth was unexpectedly long and difficult. She planned to have a natural water birth, but the birth took a different path. Her experience made her very fearful of a second pregnancy and birth, but a short 19 months later she was back at the hospital in labor. The two births turned out to be very different and she was able to have an experience with her second birth that made her feel truly empowered.

Apr 10, 2018
251|Cesarean Birth, 3 VBACs & Foster-to-Adopt Stories - Rachel Bausili

Rachel's first birth was an emergency c-section, due to baby's dropping heart rate and failure to progress after many long hours of labor. He ended up being a large baby (9 lbs, 8 oz) with a huge head. Her 2nd birth was a successful VBAC 18 months later to a smaller, healthy boy (8 lbs even). It was another long labor, but it went smoothly. Her 3rd birth was a VBAC birth to a baby girl, a much quicker and easier labor lasting only 6 hours. Baby weighed 8 lbs, 1 oz. Her 4th and last birth was a VBAC birth to a baby girl. Labor was a bit longer than the previous birth (12 hours) due to her water breaking and labor taking a while to get started but it was a smooth and relatively easy delivery. Baby weighed 8 lbs, 8 oz. She and her husband fostered a little boy 2 separate times (once during her 4th pregnancy, and again when that baby was a few months old) and his adoption was finalized last summer.

Apr 05, 2018
250| Preemie Birth Center Transfer + NICU Stay - Gioia Hackett

On this episode, Gioia tells the story of having her daughter at 34 weeks. Gioia (Joya) had all intensions of giving birth to her first child unmedicated at the local birth center she and her husband selected; but their baby had other plans. After arriving at work “feeling off” one rainy Friday morning, Gioia's water spontaneously broke at 34 weeks. Her husband immediately picked her up from work and they headed to the birth center to be checked. To everyone’s shock she was 9 centimeters dilated at arrival.

Apr 03, 2018
249| Expressing Gratitude with an Unexpected Cesarean Birth - Jelisa Smith

Jelisa thinks of her birth experience as being nothing like she had envisioned, and completely different from any birth story she'd listened to or watched online. After nearly 50 hours of labor, she felt as if she had to surrender to the process and do the one thing she REALLY didn't want to do: have a c-section. Despite the many interventions and multiple breakdowns she had during labor, she describes it as a positive birth experience, which is what she ultimately wanted. By sharing her story, she wants other Moms to know that even if their birth looks NOTHING like they envisioned or dreamed of, it's perfectly OKAY and you can STILL have a positive birth experience IF you allow yourself to feel whatever emotions you are feeling and find whatever ways you can to express gratitude around your birth. The practice of expressing Gratitude really helped Jelisa through what could have been a traumatic experience.

Mar 29, 2018
248| Gestational Diabetes, Hospital Birth, Breastfeeding/Pumping - Rebecca Minkoff
Rebecca shares the stories of her three children's births in a hospital setting. Rebecca was diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes with her first two pregnancies and was able to control it with diet. She also talks about her first baby having a two vessel cord, meconium in the water and a short NICU stay as well as her second baby refusing the breast at just two months old. With her third pregnancy Rebecca found research regarding a vitamin that helps prevent Gestational Diabetes and was able to avoid another GD diagnosis. Hear all three stories on today's episode of The Birth Hour.

Rebecca Minkoff Bio

Rebecca is the co-founder and creative director of Rebecca Minkoff, a lifestyle brand with a focus on accessories. Rebecca also has founded the inspirational FB group and offline community, @Rmsuperwomen, which provides mentorship, fireside chats with fellow female entrepreneurs to inspire women to lead a more fearless life. She lives in Dumbo Brooklyn with her 3 children (6, 3, and 10 weeks,) and husband Gavin Bellour.
Mar 27, 2018
247| Infertility, Loss & Preeclampsia Preterm Labor - Jenna-Lee Languirand

When Jenna found out about Ava bracelet she was thrilled to become pregnant again after a year of use! The bracelet helped her and her husband understand her cycle and body better. It taught her what her most optimum days were and, took a lot of the stress out of trying to conceive. She loved that it was very easy to use and see the data daily. Her pregnancy was anything but easy but this she expected.

She ended up having to be hospitalized the last month of her pregnancy due to severe preeclampsia. On the day of her baby shower, Jenna was rushed into an emergency cesarean section at 30 weeks and gave birth to her tiny 3.5 pound rainbow baby boy Wesley Arlo. Jenna and Patrick feel completely blessed to have him and can't wait until he can come home from the NICU. Jenna wanted to share her story to give hope to those who have gone thru similar circumstances

Mar 22, 2018
246| Surrogacy: Vaginal Twin Birth Story - Whitney LeBlanc

In this episode Whitney shares a little about her own children's unmediated births and then shares her journey to becoming a surrogate including matching with the intended parents, getting pregnant, finding out she was expecting twins, and planning a vaginal twin birth in the hospital. She also shares her postpartum experience and what her recovery has been like without babies to take care of.

Mar 20, 2018
245| Pitocin, Induction, Epidural Birth Story After Infertility - Beth Belt

After dealing with infertility for over a year, Beth and her husband Wes were surprised to find out they were pregnant on the day of their consultation for IVF. Beth enjoyed a smooth pregnancy up until she was 39 weeks along, when on Halloween morning, her OB discovered that her amniotic fluid levels were low, and she needed to be induced. She was induced with pitocin, and labored in the hospital with an epidural for 12 hours before giving birth to her son. Bexley was born at 2:50 am on November 1st, weighing 7lbs and 1 oz, with a full head of hair.

Mar 15, 2018
244| Preparations for a Redemptive VBAC - Caitlin Shrum

On this episode, Caitlin shares the story of her second birth, an empowering VBAC.

Mar 13, 2018
243| Giving Birth in Germany - Ana Maria Guardia

Ana gave birth like a champ in a hospital in Germany after being assured that it was baby-friendly. That didn't end up being her experience and although everything ended up ok, she shares how it felt to be treated in a way that wasn't respectful of her wishes.

Mar 08, 2018
242| OB vs Midwife—One Mom's Experience - Michelle Ankrim

In Michele's first labor, she delivered a healthy 8lbs 9oz baby boy. Along the way, she had the epidural she planned on, and then found herself ignored and talked about, not talked to, while she labored. While very happy with the healthy outcome, she felt like something was missing, and sought out care providers for her next pregnancy who might do things differently. For her 3 subsequent pregnancies, she was cared for by a team of midwives who listened to her and valued her as a partner in her labors.


The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin
Expecting Better by Emily Oster

Mar 06, 2018
241| Processing Miscarriage + Rainbow Baby Homebirth

After having miscarried in 2016, Karsyn became pregnant early 2017 with her first baby. She didn’t plan a homebirth from the beginning, but changed plans midway through her pregnancy and never looked back. After an uncomplicated pregnancy, Karsyn went into labor in her home eleven days after her due date. Five hours of early labor and five hours of active labor throughout her home and an intense fetal ejection reflex waterbirth brought her Phoenix. Though her pregnancy and labor were pretty ideal, she struggled with breastfeeding and getting Phoenix to gain weight. She’s currently feeding her son exclusively breastmilk and has worked hard to make that possible despite odds stacked against them.

Mar 01, 2018
240| Three Unplanned Cesarean Birth Stories - Afra Said

Afra has undergone 3 C-sections mainly due to intervention. With her first she was induced at 41+2 with cervidel to prepare me for an induction and went into labor shortly after. She was 3 cms when admitted to the hosptial, but was put on a bed, not allowed to move around much, and also given some pain meds through an IV which slowed things down alot. She was naive and didn't know much about the importance of movement, and advocating for herself. She labored and got to 8cms, but baby wasn't engaged even though she was 80% effaced. Her baby quickly moved and went transverse as the OB says and so she ended up with an emergency c-section.

With her second she ended up having a c-section again after her water starting leaking. She wasn't getting any contractions and so she was induced at 41 weeks, and she progressed to 8.5cms after about 30/40 hours or so. Her daughter was eventually at station 0 and Afra was 100% effaced but baby wasn't descending as they later found in the c-section the cord was around her neck. Her cervix had swollen with all the constant cervical checks, water ruptures, and catheters inserted. she had been on the IV, antibitocis and eventually had an epidural which helped her progress to 8.5 from 7.

With her 3rd baby, she couldn't find a supportive provider or midwife that could take her on except for an OB who agreed to allow her to TOLAC provided everything was going well. She dilated and went into labor on her own this time and without her approval got a sweep from her OB which set off active labor. Her baby ended up being posterior in brow presentation which gave her back labor and was the reason why her labor wasn't progressing well causing decals. She ended up having her 3rd C-section shortly after.

Read more on the show notes page.

Feb 27, 2018
239| Hospital Birth With Nitrous Oxide & Birth Tub - L'America Brown

After initially planning on receiving an epidural (due to fear of pain), L’America researched and decided to prepare for a natural, water birth instead. Her fear of pain was overshadowed by her fear of needles, delivery interventions, and the potential lingering effects on mother and child. By using alternative pain management options (nitrous oxide, hydrotherapy, birthing ball, counter-pressure, and aromatherapy) and having a very supportive birthing team, L’America had a 17-hour natural labor and delivery (which included only 28 minutes of pushing) without any complications!

Feb 22, 2018
238| Two Unmedicated Hospital Births & Home Waterbirth Birth Stories - Elise Hurst

Elise Hurst shares her three birth stories—two unmedicated hospital births and one homebirth. She also shares some fun and interesting tidbits from pregnancy and struggles with breastfeeding and postpartum. 

She has a great list of resources listed here

Feb 20, 2018
238| Unplanned Cesarean Birth After "Doing Everything Right" - Catherine Gray

Catherine Gray planned an unmedicated hospital birth and did everything she could to have a low-risk pregnancy. She took Bradley classes, exercised, followed the Brewer’s diet, interviewed numerous care providers, had chiropractic care and acupuncture, practiced relaxation techniques…and ended up with an unplanned cesarean birth after a long labor at 42 weeks. Sometimes you do everything right, and the part of birth that is a mystery takes over. In processing her birth as a mother, Catherine has explored how her experience as a survivor of emotional and sexual abuse affected the decisions she made during labor and the feelings she had afterward. She has pursued the question, “What if my cesarean was my healing rather than my scarring?”

Feb 15, 2018
237| Peaceful Hospital Birth + Choices Around Miscarriage - Suzy Nuñez-Babb

Suzy had been planning the birth of her first child long before she was pregnant. When she found out she was pregnant, she went to work right away preparing for the birth. She knew she wanted to have an unmediated birth with as few interventions as possible. After lots of preparation during her pregnancy, Suzy was able to give birth naturally, peacefully, and joyfully in the hospital. This was all in spite of the fact that her labor only lasted five and a half hours.

Feb 13, 2018
236| Double Whammy Twin Birth Story - Julie Burt Nichols

After a bout with infertility and IVF, Julie was thrilled and terrified to be pregnant with twins! But after an uneventful pregnancy, and making it to 38 weeks, Julie experienced the thing all twin moms dread: the “double whammy” birth.

Feb 08, 2018
235| Hospital Induction Turned Cesarean Birth Story - Leslie Maggitt

Leslie was 40+3 when she went in for a Non stress test. The NST showed baby’s heart rate was declining after each contraction so she was admitted to the hospital that same day. She was induced around 7pm Thursday, April 14th. After almost 24 hours of labor, baby wasn’t moving down the birth canal so it was decided to go ahead with a cesarean birth. Jaxon Maggit was born via cesarean at almost 8pm Friday night.

Feb 06, 2018
234| Unmedicated Hospital Birth with a Male Doula - Michele Pellicer

Michele had a typical pregnancy with all the glam of exhaustion, great hair, makeup induced glow, and self described cankles. She used her male doula and husband to coach her through contractions with a system of position changes. By preparing for labor with music and essential oils, she was able to push through with an unmedicated hospital birth. Wilder was born to Beyonce as Michele roared her out. She had a “normal” postpartum with the highs of having a new beautiful baby girl and food coming on speed dial, and lows of husband hatred due to lack of sleep and toe curling nursing.

Feb 01, 2018
233| What's Behind Racial Disparities in Pregnancy & Childbirth - Denene Millner

Today we are doing things a little differently on the podcast. I'm going to be replaying an episode from Denene Millner, who shared her experience with pregnancy and childbirth as a black woman in America back in 2016 on The Birth Hour. But first I'm going to share some clips from NPR's Code Switch podcast which recently covered this topic. NPR reports that, "black women in the United States are 243 percent more likely than white women to die of pregnancy or childbirth related causes. There's evidence that shows this gap is caused by the "weathering" effects of racism. Weathering is a term coined for stress-induced wear and tear on the body." This statistic is true across all socioeconomic classes because "it's a type of stress for which education and class provide no protection."

Today's birth story features Denene Millner, who shares her experience giving birth to her daughter at a teaching hospital in Harlem, NY. Denene had a doctor that she loved, the support of her husband, and made plans ahead of time for what she thought would be a great hospital birth experience. Unfortunately, she was treated like a second-class citizen for the majority of her time at the hospital. In this episode, she shares her story and discusses some of the issues that many black women face when it comes to pregnancy and childbirth in America.


This episode is sponsored by The Birth Hour's Know Your Options Childbirth Course and Back-2-Work Breastfeeding Course. Find out more here!

Jan 30, 2018
232| 75 Hour Marathon Home Birth Story - Lisa Redfern

Lisa always knew that she wanted a home birth, but she never anticipated having a marathon labor that would require extra support, including visits to the acupuncturist, the chiropractor, and the hospital. She eventually delivered her perfect daughter at home after over 75 hours of labor with her superstar support team.

Show your support of The Birth Hour by joining our listener supporters group!

Jan 25, 2018
231| Empowering Epidural Births + Navigating Postpartum & Bottle Feeding - Jessica Pallay

Before becoming a mom, Jessica had few expectations about pregnancy, birth, or motherhood. Her only close friend that had given birth did so unmedicated, and most of the language in her birth classes and the surrounding Brooklyn community was largely about "going natural," followed unconditionally by breastfeeding. But her journey took a different turn—she had epidurals for the births of both of her daughters, and breastfed neither. Both births, she says, were empowering experiences thanks to a trusty team of medical providers.

Jessica concedes that postpartum was much more challenging. She struggled early on with breastfeeding and experienced a lot of formula feeding judgement—both from other mothers, and herself. She was also surprised by how many people demean a "medicated" birth as being not natural. It's one of the reasons she's so committed to sharing a wide range of women's pregnancy, birth, and motherhood experiences on her website Well Rounded.

Jan 23, 2018
230| PCOS + New Zealand Homebirth Birth Story - Lena Whetton

Cristian and Lena struggled to conceive for three years. After one-and-a-half years of trying they sought help through the fertility clinic, which diagnosed Lena with PCOS and an under-active thyroid. After proceeding through all the appropriate tests (like checking for fallopian tube blockage, semen checks, and ruling out all other possible causes) they embarked on the very basic fertility care: Letrozol (similar to Clomid). After trying 3 rounds of Letrozole, they fell pregnant in November 2016.

With the myriad health issues Lena had (asthma, hypothyroidism, hasimotos disease, PCOS and allergies) there was some talk of needing special care on the mainland, which would make her island-based homebirth out of the picture. However, Lena had a very special and amazing midwife who looked deep into the “rules” and said that, provided things were carefully monitored, they could stay with midwifery care on the island. A homebirth was planned, and Lena did many things to promote a very healthy pregnancy in order to keep her dream a reality. The thought of having to travel by boat to get to a birth center or hospital while in labor was unbearable for Lena.

At 9 days over-due, Lena went into labor on a Sunday afternoon at 1pm. The midwife arrived at 3pm, and by then labor was in full swing. Her contractions were intense and back- to-back with little to no breaks in between. Once 10cm dilation was reached, Lena's midwife helped baby get past a small cervical lip and then performed a very nifty maneuver to help baby drop and get past the pubic bone that he appeared to be stuck on. Moments later, Lena's waters gushed everywhere and pushing commenced. 45 minutes later (10 hours of labor + 45 minutes of pushing) baby was here at 10:36pm. Cristian caught baby and announced the sex.

Lena suffered a 3rd degree tear and was stitched up nicely by her midwife shortly after. The evening closed with a delicious cheese toastie and bubbles in bed to celebrate.

Jan 18, 2018
229| Journey to a Fear-Free & Empowered Birth - Amber Keeler

Birth of Vienna—December 08, 2015: Amber planned an unmedicated hospital birth with her first daughter Vienna using Vanderbilt Midwives & a volunteer doula. She found herself in the midst of transition feeling ill-prepared for coping through the pain & highly disappointed with the lack of care from the midwife on call. With the help of her doula, she pushed through transition using guided breathing.

However when it came time to push, her baby's heart rate began to decelerate & a resident doctor stepped in with no introduction or warning to perform an aggressive rectal intervention where he inserted his hand into her rectum to force a fast delivery of the baby's head. It was very painful & left her feeling traumatized for months. A different midwife later apologized to Amber and affirmed that the doctor's actions were aggressive & unnecessary. That experience ultimately set Amber on a journey to have an empowered fear-free natural birth at a Birth Center with her second, as well as to become a Birth & Postpartum Doula herself.

Jan 16, 2018
228| Cesarean Birth, Two VBACS and Emergency Cesarean Hysterectomy - Tonya Trostel

Tonya and her husband Evan have three beautiful daughters. Teal who is three, Layne who just turned 2, and Eva is her 4 month old. They reside in a small town in Colorado. Tonya is a former teacher and hair stylist but now is trying to keep up with her daughters as a stay at home mother. She has had three very different births, first was a c-section, second had an epidural VBAC and the last was a natural VBAC, followed by a cesarean hysterectomy due to placenta increta. Tonya is still recovering as she and her husband are adjusting to becoming a family of five.

Jan 11, 2018
227| Unplanned Cesarean Birth Story & Working With a Birth Trauma Therapist - Allison Lynch

Allison always knew she wanted to have an unmedicated childbirth; her mom had three, so she assumed that is what she would be able to do as well. Allison and her husband took Bradley Method classes to prepare for childbirth together, and Allison was so excited to experience what her body was made to do. Allison started going to into labor 4 days after her due date, and went to the hospital where she labored overnight and into the next day. Exhausted, Allison ended up getting an epidural and dilated quickly. She pushed for over 3 hours; but, the baby didn't come down, so Allison followed her gut and opted for a c-section. The epidural and spinal block didn't work, so Allison ended up being put under general anesthesia. She woke up to find out that she had delivered a girl: Cora Jo, 9 lbs and 21 inches.

After her traumatic c-section and blood transfusion, Allison knew she had a long road of physical and emotional recovery. After 8 months, Allison was still having nightly flashbacks and intrusive thoughts, so she searched for a local birth trauma therapist. Going to therapy was one of her best decisions as it taught her how to handle the traumatic flashbacks of her birth. Allison shares some of the helpful exercises on the podcast.

Jan 09, 2018
226| Type 1 Diabetic Hospital and Hypnobirth Stories - Keshia Gesundheit

With her first pregnancy, Keshia decided on the best OBGYN for her, taking into consideration that she is a type 1 diabetic. Keshia's waters broke shortly after attending a Latin street festival with her fiancé and parents. Back and forth from the hospital, Keshia, exhausted, gave birth to her daughter on her own terms, with a very supportive partner and medical staff after 22 hours of labor. Second time around, having had so many events occur during her pregnancy with her son, Keshia ended up having a calm and tranquil Hypnobirth.

Keshia, a Wedding Photographer with a Bachelor of Exercise Science and Half a Doctor of Physiotherapy, is a type 1 diabetic and mother of two. Keshia and Steve, knowing there was the possibility of fertility challenges ahead, decided to start "not trying not to" have a family in 2014, falling pregnant with there first daughter in January of 2015, and again, with their son in August of 2016. She talks about her journey through both pregnancies, subsequent process of self education and two eventful natural births.

Jan 04, 2018
225|Unmedicated Hospital Birth with Doula Support - Sarah Hoddick

Sarah approached birth wanting whatever type of birth her baby needed to arrive safely; but, she did want to start her labor naturally and hired a doula to help her cope with labor. She ended up having a 33-hour unmedicated hospital birth with a midwife! I loved hearing how despite very little birth-preparation, Sarah completely trusted her doula to guide her through her labor and benefited so much from her doula's knowledge and guidance. She shares some of the positions and tools that were most helpful to her during her long labor at the hospital.

Jan 02, 2018
224| The Journey of A Gestational Carrier Birth with Sarah Tuttle & Kara Ford (REBROADCAST)

Today's birth story podcast episode features Sarah Tuttle and her gestational carrier, turned great friend, Kara Ford. I had the chance to interview both of them and hear the story of how they found one another, how they made the decision to have Kara carry Sarah's babies and the birth of Sarah and her husband, Chris' sweet twin girls.

Dec 28, 2017
223| Blythe Fike Shares Her Sixth Birth Story - The Epidural Birth (REBROADCAST)

Y'all, I'm not gonna lie, this episode strays a bit from what you are typically hearing on The Birth Hour, but it was actually one of my favorite episodes to record. Blythe Fike is a mom of 6 and wife of 1 living in Southern California. After 5 unmedicated, out of hospital births, she went rogue for number 6 and headed to the hospital... on purpose. She loves talking all kinds of birth and you can find her sometimes doing that at

Blythe's episode is pretty light hearted and will definitely make you laugh but I also think it's so valuable in that she wasn't afraid to trust her gut and go for the type of birth she wanted even though she had done things very differently the first FIVE times! I love how Blythe and her husband tease each other about how funny the hospital birth experience is after having so many homebirths. These two obviously really know each other on all sorts of levels and make an awesome birthing team.

Dec 26, 2017
222| Home Birth with Hypnobirthing, Postpartum Transfer - Caroline Snider

After suffering from an autoimmune condition most of her life, Caroline approached pregnancy with trepidation, initially unsure she would be able to successfully conceive. After becoming pregnant in Fall 2016, her initial elation gave way to concern when a 12 week scan revealed her son was suffering from a condition called megacystis. When not resolved in utero, megacystis proves fatal. Careful monitoring continued until 24 weeks when she was finally given the "all clear" to enjoy a healthy pregnancy. Meeting with a doula around the same time gave Caroline and her husband, Brett, the confidence to pursue a homebirth; and, despite insurance difficulties, they secured the services of an incredible homebirth midwife.

At 38 weeks, Caroline’s waters broke and after an intense but pain free night (thanks hypnobirthing!) her son was born after a posterior labor in the bedroom of their home. When her placenta tore after delivery, Caroline was transferred to the local hospital for a D&C where her impeccable care continued.

Dec 21, 2017
221| Jill Krause of Baby Rabies' Four Birth Stories (REBROADCAST)

Jill Krause is the founder of Baby Rabies. This is what happens when baby fever becomes something more. Jill Krause self diagnosed herself with baby rabies (it’s not an actual contagious disease, FYI) in the summer of 2007 when she became obsessed with getting pregnant. Learn more about the definition of baby rabies here. She started blogging about all things trying-to-conceive then. 10 years and 4 babies later, Baby Rabies is now a internationally recognized pregnancy and parenting blog. Connect with Jill on Facebook and Instagram. You can now also follow along with Jill and her family as they travel the country in an RV over at Happy Loud Life!

Dec 19, 2017
220| Eight Unmedicated Birth Stories - Jayme Crockett

Jayme has had 8 unmedicated births. One was induced, 5 were in the hospital, and 3 were home water births. Each one was unique and has its own special story. She learned something new with each pregnancy. After her 7th baby, 9 years ago, she was sure her birthing career was over. But then Jayme met her current husband Ben (who had 2 children by adoption); and, they decided to have a baby together. She struggled a bit with getting pregnant. After finding out she had an autoimmune disorder called Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, she tweaked her diet, took some supplements, and was able to get pregnant! Jayme knew she wanted a home water birth, and was supported 100% by her husband. As she prepared for the birth she took prenatal yoga (with her husband!) and attended a hypnobabies class. Even though she was almost 40, she had a completely uncomplicated pregnancy and delivery, and gave birth to her son, Atticus, who was 7lbs 10oz.

Dec 14, 2017
219| Unmedicated Birth Center and Home Birth Stories + Congenital Heart Defect - Stephanie Hoverson

With her first son, Nolan, Stephanie went four days past her due date and had an 18 hour labor (6 hours pushing). Afterwards, Stephanie realized how much fear she had tucked away, and that it caused her to resist and nearly stop her contractions while in the pushing phase. For her next birth, Stephanie knew that she couldn’t push for 6 hours, physically, and that she probably wouldn't be allowed to either. She did research and decided to practice an at home study course with Hypnobabies. She also completed her DONA birth doula training one day before her second son, Remi, was born. Thankfully she had learned a technique to keep her baby in because he came fast and furious (two pushes), being born approximately five minutes after her midwives arrived. The speedy labor and birth was a complete shock. The possibility of having a baby before 40 weeks had never crossed her mind, but (surprise!) Remi was born at 36 weeks 3 days.

Dec 12, 2017
218|Pre-eclampsia Induced Birth at 36 Weeks - Kara Lewis

After Kara and her husband got the surprise of a positive pregnancy test, they immediately began planning for a medication free hospital birth to follow in the footsteps of Kara’s mother and sisters-in-law. After receiving the diagnosis of fetal hydronephrosis at their anatomy scan, things seemed to go down hill. Kara began having trouble with weight gain and high blood pressure, although her doctor seemed unconcerned. At 36 weeks Kara was admitted to the hospital for a 24 hour urine screening. After the screening was completed, her protein levels were more elevated than expected and she was heading towards an emergency induction. Multiple interventions followed, and Dorsey Commander was born at 36 weeks weighing 6lb 7oz.

Dec 07, 2017
217| Fast Unmedicated, Breech Cesarean & Unsuccessful VBAC Birth Stories - Rebekah Hoffer
Despite needing to be induced because of dangerously low amniotic fluid levels, Rebekah was able to have a natural and fast delivery with her first baby. Her hopes for repeating her natural delivery with baby number two were smashed when they discovered the baby was breech. After several attempts to encourage the baby to flip, eventually Rebekah delivered her second baby via c-section.
Rebekah dreamed of having a VBAC with her third baby, but knew that her history of low amniotic fluid could get in the way. Eventually, her low fluid did require Rebekah to be induced. The VBAC was not successful, and Rebekah had another c-section. However, a surprising discovery in the operating room confirmed that the c-section was meant to be.
Dec 05, 2017
216| Hospital Birth Stories & Unexplained Secondary Infertility - Kristin Croxton

Kristin Croxton shares her 2 very different hospital births. The first, her oldest son Jack, was born sunny-side up after Kristin received an epidural and multiple other interventions. After months of trying to conceive again, Kristin was diagnosed with unexplained secondary infertility. With the help of Femara and intra-uterine insemination, she was able to get pregnant with her second son, and had a medication-free hospital birth.

Nov 30, 2017
215| Unmedicated Hospital birth, Healing After Loss & Rainbow Baby Birth Story - Kasey McComas

Kasey’s first pregnancy and labor was slow and steady. After almost 3 days of labor, her first son was born vaginally and unmedicated in a hospital. Eleven months later, at 21 weeks in her second pregnancy, she experienced a loss of a daughter through fetal demise, induction, and delivery. After a journey of grief for her unborn, and for another pregnancy loss in her family, Kasey found strength in herself and her body again. A year later, to the date, she and her husband found out they were expecting another baby. Through a few rough patches in her pregnancy, Kasey planned for a healing birth center birth made it to 39 weeks and 4 days when she went into labor. When that day came, it was nothing short of chaotic. She delivered her baby at an ultrasound appointment with a doctor she never knew, nurses who had never attended birth, and a few teams of paramedics. After a transfer to the hospital for postpartum care and a short stay in the NICU, she was able to escape the chaos, take her rainbow baby home and begin as a family of 4.

Nov 28, 2017
214| Three Vaginal Breech Births - Hospital, Birth Center & Homebirth - Jessica Gray

In this episode, Jessica shares her three breech birth stories, one each  at a hospital, a birth center, and her home. 

Nov 23, 2017
213| A Twin Story, from a Healthy Pregnancy to a Powerful Birth - Amy Griffith

In today's episode, Amy Griffith tells the story of her twins' birth. After a healthy pregnancy with twins, Amy and her husband were planning another home birth. Their first two children were born at home. Amy and her midwives were hoping to make it to 37 weeks. When labor began at 36 weeks, they all decided that giving birth in the hospital would be the smartest and safest choice. 

Amy Griffith is a mom of 4, including twins. She transitioned from a career as a Broadway dancer and Radio City Rockette, to the world of yoga as an instructor specializing in prenatal and postnatal yoga. Amy's pregnancy and birth with her son inspired her to film her own prenatal yoga dvd's with her daughter, her second child. Her pregnancy and birth with the twins reinforced the importance of slowing down, trusting her body and surrendering to their path. Amy says she is mindfully-stumbling through motherhood as she juggles the demands of 4 children. A focus on the good in the present moment is how she handles the challenges that arise in motherhood. More information on Amy, her pre/postnatal dvd's and social media links can be found at

Nov 21, 2017
212 | 3 Positive Epidural Births + PPD Discussion - Bert Anderson

Bert Anderson had three positive vaginal births in hospitals. She used epidurals for all three births and for the most part she had uncomplicated pregnancies. After her first birth she was diagnosed with postpartum depression when her son was four months old. Since then she has become aware of her mood and depression so she can recognize the warning signs.

Did you miss the Know Your Options Childbirth Course? Go here to stay in the loop!

Nov 16, 2017
211| Sperm Donor, Epidurals & Cussing - Dawn Dais' Birth Stories

During her first pregnancy she constantly worried that she would get to the hospital too late for drugs. Her entire birth plan was just the word "DRUGS!" written on a piece of paper. But she also didn't want to arrive to the hospital so early that they sent her home because she was one centimeter dilated and already screaming for an epidural.

When her labor started everyone, including Dawn, just assumed she was a wimp when it came to the pain level. So she labored at home for quite some time. Then her water broke and her contractions were coming on top of each other. But they weren't lasting a minute! Dawn was waiting for 511, and because her contractions weren't lasting a minute she thought she was fine. She was not fine.

They zoomed to the hospital and were given the devastating news: Dawn was too far along to get drugs. She was 9.5 centimeters when she got to the hospital and the baby was 100% born 45 minutes after she arrived. There were no drugs, but there was plenty of cussing.

Dawn assumed her second delivery would be similar to her first, and maybe even faster. But instead of being one week early her second baby was one week late. And instead of bursting out in a frenzy, baby #2 took his sweet time. 24 hours after she checked into the hospital her second child arrived. The good news: there was plenty of time for drugs the second time around. And not nearly as many cuss words.

Nov 14, 2017
210| Two Hospital Births Attended by Midwives - Lindsay Forehand

In this episode, Lindsay tells the story of her two children. John was born in July 2015 with the help of a Certified Nurse Midwife, and Sybil was born June 2017, a surprise breech, with the help of the same CNM.

Nov 09, 2017
209| Empowering Family-Centered Cesarean Birth Story - Alyssa Oliha

Pregnant with her first, Alyssa thoroughly enjoyed the beginning of her low-risk first and second trimesters. She had gathered her trusted team of an incredible husband, midwives, doula, and childbirth education via Stephanie Spitzer-Hanks, and made all of her plans surrounding a birth at the Atlanta Birth Center. Luckily, when signs of preeclampsia started creeping up in the third trimester, she was well-prepared to navigate throwing all of those plans out the window and heading to the hospital for an induction (and eventual emergency family-centered cesarean).


Nov 07, 2017
208| Hospital Birth, Bradley Method & Home Birth Stories - Ann Timm

Ann’s first pregnancy, at the age of 21, started out as many do: visiting her traditional OB/GYN and making plans for a hospital delivery. But when Ann met a woman who opted for a home birth with a midwife, a whole new world of possibilities opened up to her. Ann began to study everything she could about child birth, learning and growing and becoming more and more excited by what she discovered her body could do on its own, naturally, without drugs or other interventions. She ran into a big stumbling block when her physician failed to support her plans wholeheartedly, but she was determined to continue with her goal of utilizing the Bradley Method. As it turned out, her midwife’s wisdom and Ann’s own intuition may have saved her son’s life.

Nov 02, 2017
207|Birth Center Birth Story in Brooklyn, NY - Nijsha Nesbitt

The minute Nijsha found out she was pregnant was an instant shock to her and her partner, as they were not actively trying to conceive. They knew it was a blessing though, and that for them there was no real perfect time to start a family. Nijsha had heard stories from her own mother about how her birthing experiences were extremely difficult; and, Nijsha had always wanted her experience to be different. When she did find out she was pregnant she began to do her own research. She wanted to have an unmedicated birth with no interventions in an out-of-hospital setting.

Her partner was not completely sold on the idea of a home birth (fearing a medical emergency) so they made the decision to meet in the middle with a birthing center. Nijsha read books, listened to The Birth Hour podcast, and watched birth videos on YouTube to prepare. She went into labor the day after her due date on March 21st and had the support of her partner, doula, and midwives who helped her get through 18 hours of labor. She used all the breathing and active laboring techniques to help bring her beautiful daughter Gia Ryan earth side on March 22nd, 2017 at 3:51PM. Gia weighed 6 pounds 8.5 ounces and was 26 inches long.

Oct 31, 2017
Tackling the First 24 Hours of Breastfeeding - 'Know Your Options' Bonus Episode 7

Those first 24 hours after birth are crucial to getting off on the right foot with breastfeeding. We have all the info you need for a great start!

Grab your free download — Quick Start Breastfeeding Guide

Oct 30, 2017
206| Natalie Diaz' Twin Birth Story

Natalie is the Pied Piper of twin families around the globe. Founding Twiniversity — the world’s leading support network for multiple birth families — in 2009, she’s become the global influencer for this small niche community. Reaching over a million families a week through Twiniversity’s FacebookTwitterPinterestInstagram and YouTube channels, moms and dads of twins flock to Twiniversity to find resources, ask questions, explore new products, and find community and support from other twin parents. Natalie is a true connector, bringing parents from all walks of life together, breaking past cultural differences, to share in the highs and lows of parenting twins. Natalie’s book, “What To Do When You’re Having Two” is a global bestseller in Twins & Multiples Parenting.

Oct 26, 2017
205| Beautiful, Supported, and Powerful Birth Center Birth Story - Phylicia Sadsarin

Phylicia is a full-time wife, mommy, & beauty + lifestyle blogger. She loves to travel the world, create and share meaningful content via social media, and hang out with her dogs. She currently resides in Denver, CO.

This episode is sponsored by Expectful, a digital platform that makes meditation easy for expectant and new moms. Each one of their guided meditations has been created to support you throughout your pregnancy and motherhood journey.

Their mission is to give babies the best start in life, and that begins with you. If you’re pregnant or a new mom, go to and sign up for their 30 day free meditation trial. It may just change your life.

Oct 24, 2017
Setting Boundaries & Expectations Postpartum - 'Know Your Options' Bonus Episode 6

Setting boundaries with your loved ones is one of the tricky things about having a baby that no one really talks about in childbirth preparation. But Stephanie and I have both personally dealt with this and we know how important it is so we want to go over how to get on the same page with your partner and how to approach issues with your extended family. Be sure to grab my favorite free printable download yet that goes over some of the questions you should be asking each other and tips on how to navigate and set postpartum boundaries.

Oct 23, 2017
204| Twin to Twin Transfusion Loss, Miscarriage and Rainbow Babies - Ashley Gilbreth

Ashley shares the story of the loss of her twins, followed by a miscarriage, and then the birth of her rainbow babies. Her daughter Cates was born early and spent 33 days in the NICU; and, her son Rett and daughter Liza were both born full-term by scheduled cesarean. She shares how her faith affected the way she processed her losses, and how it all impacted her subsequent pregnancies and births.

Oct 19, 2017
203|Homebirth Transfer, Three Losses, & Redemptive Homebirth - Sasha Ruscheinski

Sasha, the daughter of a midwife, planned for a home birth with her first son, but after 24 hours of labor and being stuck at 8cms for nine hours the decision was made to transfer to the hospital. Her son was born three hours after they arrived into his grandma’s hands.

Sasha felt a lot of disappointment in herself that her birth didn’t go the way she had envisioned. She started trying for baby #2 just after her son turned one. In a matter of eight months she experienced two miscarriages and an ectopic pregnancy. When she finally got pregnant with her second son she planned for another home birth. She went into spontaneous labor 10 days past her due date and her rainbow baby was born into her arms on her bedroom floor after one hour of labor. She wants women to know that your first labor does not dictate future labors. Every baby and every delivery is so different.

Oct 17, 2017
Reduce Your Risk of Tearing - 'Know Your Options' Bonus Episode 5

Worrying about giving birth and what your vagina will be like afterwards is completely normal. Naturally, most of us want to do everything possible to reduce the risk of tearing, so today we are discussing this very topic! Be sure to grab your free download that shares techniques to help reduce your risk of tearing in childbirth!

Oct 16, 2017
202| Three Epidural Birth Stories - Chelsea Johnson

Chelsea has had three epidural births in the hospital, each one a little different. With her first baby, she was induced a few days after 40 weeks and her son was born less than 8 hours later. With her daughter, she had a scheduled induction at 39 weeks, and was in labor 12 hours before her daughter was born. Chelsea experienced a few days of prodromal labor with her third baby, then went into labor on her own at 39 weeks. Chelsea gave birth to her third baby 7 hours after arriving at the hospital.

Oct 12, 2017
201|Delaying Preterm Labor and Postpartum Complications - Ally Downey

Allyson Downey is an entrepreneur, MBA, writer, and parent who has built a career on the power of trusted advice. In 2013, she launched weeSpring, a Techstars-backed startup that helps new and expecting parents collect advice from their friends about what they need for their baby. weeSpring has received accolades from TechCrunchMashableCNBC, and the Daily Mail, and it was heralded as “Yelp for baby products” by InStyle magazine.

She is also the author of Here's the Plan: Your Practical, Tactical Guide to Advancing Your Career During Pregnancy and Parenthood, the pregnancy-and-parenting guide to your professional life. Her writing has been featured in The Atlantic, Time, Fortune, Fast Company, the Wall Street Journal, and others; and, she has appeared on ABC World News NowPower Pitch on CNBC, and other outlets. Allyson has an MBA from Columbia Business School, an MFA from Columbia University's School of the Arts, and a BA from Colby College. She serves on the board of Democracy Prep Public Schools, one of the country's top charter management organizations, and lives in Boulder with her husband and two children. She can be found on Twitter and Instagram as @allysondowney.

Oct 10, 2017
Natural Coping Techniques for Labor - Bonus Episode 4

Nearly every woman that labors in some capacity will need to cope with contractions unmedicated at some point. You aren't automatically hooked up to an epidural the moment you feel that first contraction! So even if you are planning for an epidural, you will find useful tips in this bonus episode and free download!

Oct 09, 2017
200| Adopting a Teenager and Having a Baby at the Same Time - Corinne Horowitz

After months of Corinne worrying that the adoption and birth would somehow happen the same day, Desmond was 9 days late. Corinne's water leaked late at night, and she went to the hospital early the next morning. After spending 6 hours in the hospital with no progression, Corinne's doctor fully broke the water bag. Corinne was hopeful there would be no additional intervention, and thanks to coaching from her Mom, and constant massaging by both her Mom and husband, she was able to persevere. After 8 hours of back labor, Corinne gave birth to Desmond at 11pm. Ben ordered pizza and a turkey sandwich, Corinne's favorite foods, and everyone lived happily ever after.

Oct 05, 2017
199| Cesarean Birth & VBAC Birth Stories - Amy Morrison of Pregnant Chicken

Amy Morrison Bio

Amy Morrison is the founder of Pregnant Chicken, an online resource and blog for expectant and new parents featuring advice, information, and tips to keep your pregnancy fun.

In her former life she was a creative director at an ad agency but decided to quit and go freelance as an art director/graphic designer in 2004. She and her husband have two little boys (born in 2006 and 2008) and live in Toronto. She shares both birth stories in this episode—a cesarean birth and an Induction VBAC birth.


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QUIZ! Where Should You Give Birth Based on Your Personality Type?

Oct 03, 2017
198| - Elle Rowley's Four Hospital Birth Stories

Solly Baby Wrap

Elle the founder of Solly Baby shares her four birth stories. Solly is also generously offering $5 off your order with the code BIRTHHOUR at

Read more on the show notes page.


First Forty Days
Bradley Method

Oct 02, 2017
How to Handle Tricky Situations with Hospital Staff - Bonus Episode 3

When it comes to dealing with unsupportive hospital staff or conflicting information it can be easy to feel overwhelmed or stunned, especially in the moment.

Today Stephanie and I are talking about key phrases to use when you find yourself in one of these situations and other tips to keep in mind so you are prepared for all of the different potential scenarios. Stephanie is a doula, lactation consultant and certified childbirth educator so you will definitely want to soak in all of her amazing knowledge!

Grab your free download — How to Handle Tricky Situations with Hospital Staff

Still have questions? Submit them and we will do our best to answer all of them on our Facebook Live this week on 10/4/17 at 1pm CST. 

Have you taken our quiz?! I have been so surprised by the results so far! Where Should You Give Birth Based on Your Personality?

Oct 02, 2017
197| Positive Induction Birth Story - Anna Keller

After a miscarriage, Anna and Kevin were thrilled to learn they were expecting a baby girl. Anna had a wonderfully healthy pregnancy (for which she largely credits the Pure Barre classes she took up until 41 weeks) and was hoping for an intervention-free birth. Baby girl Maggie, as it turned out, was in no rush to make her big debut into the world; and, as the days passed by without progression, Anna started worrying that an induction was in store and might throw off her birth plans. She ended up having to get induced, but Maggie’s birth was ultimately a far faster and better experience than Anna even knew to hope for.

Sep 28, 2017
196| Facebook Live Home Birth Story - Paige LoPinto

In December 2015, Paige LoPinto had a beautiful home birth. It went so well that she decided to follow in April the Giraffe's foot steps and stream her second home birth on Facebook Live. Over 8,000 people (95% moms, doulas & midwifes) followed her journey. Fun facts about her recent birth:

  1. Paige had 10+ people on her “birth team,” husband, family, friends, photographers, midwife, and doula
  2. Paige and her husband decided to keep the gender a surprise. Paige thought her entire pregnancy she was having a boy, so you can imagine the tears of joy when they found out it was a GIRL!
  3. Savvy Fae went nameless for 3 days. Dad wanted to name her Savage, but mom wasn’t keen on the meaning. They happily agreed on Savvy Fae!

Since the birth of sweet Savvy Fae, Paige has made an (unexpected) impact in the birth world. After streaming her birth LIVE on Facebook, women all over world have followed in her footsteps and are also streaming their birth live in the BirthTUBE Facebook group. Check it out!

Sep 26, 2017
Choosing an Evidence Based Hospital - Bonus Episode 2

When it comes to finding a hospital, there are some key things to look for to ensure you will be setting yourself up for the most mother-baby friendly care possible!

Today Stephanie and I are talking about questions you can ask on the tour you take of the hospital prior to choosing where you will give birth. Because many doctors only have privileges at certain hospitals, you may want to look into the hospitals early on in your care when choosing a doctor. Stephanie is a doula, lactation consultant and certified childbirth educator so you will definitely want to soak in all of her amazing knowledge!

Sep 25, 2017
195| Homebirth to Hospital Cesarean Birth Story - Natalie Brenner

Natalie's first pregnancy (conceived with clomid) ended in a miscarriage. For her second pregnancy, she started right away with progesterone and blood thinning shots (she has factor v leiden). She knew for years that she wanted a home birth. She also knew the risks of home birth with her blood clotting disorder—she knew she may transfer at some point for hemorrhaging, but hoped against a placenta abruption. Her hematologist said that taking thinning injections helped cancel out that risk. She prepared for a home birth and anticipated it with so much joy. She wanted a home birth so badly. She couldn't wait to experience that 'meeting moment' she had assisted so many times as a birth photographer.

Natalie's birth began on a Tuesday morning, May 31. She labored and labored and labored. On Wednesday morning, her contractions became irregular. Wednesday night around 11 pm she transferred to the hospital, hoping to get her body back in order. Epidural didn't work. Pitocin didn't work. Her body metabolized the medicine. Thursday she pushed for over 4 hours. She was sure she was going to push him out. He was asynclitic (when a baby's head is tipped towards one shoulder) and had swelling of the scalp (caput succedaneum). Her birth ended in a cesarean. She kept imagining meeting him, how it would be worth it. Her body metabolized the medicine, once again, so they had to put her under general anesthetics. She was asleep. Then when she woke up and was in a whole world of pain.

Sep 21, 2017
194| Cesarean Birth Stories & Postpartum Depression - Christine McNabb

Christine had four C-sections. The first one was an emergency C-section and the rest were repeats. Christine’s first three children are girls and her last child is a boy. When Christine found out she was pregnant, she wasn’t happy. She just didn’t feel prepared. When Christine told her husband, he was thrilled. As time went on Christine began to enjoy her pregnancy and started to get ready for the changes in their home. When Christine and Brandon went to the doctor to find out the gender of their baby, the world came to a standstill. They found out they were having a baby boy. Brandon was super excited. He started talking about matching outfits, golf outings, and playing football with his son. Christine was in shock. See, when Christine found out they were having a boy, it was around the time a black boy was shot in the back by a police officer. Christine’s anxiety went through the roof.

After baby Brandon was born, Christine did not bond with him. She was sad and had a very hard time holding him. Christine was ready to leave her kids and her husband because she was broken and had no idea of what was going on. Christine’s husband Brandon, recognized something was going on and took her to the doctor right away.
Christine was diagnosed with Postpartum Depression.

Sep 19, 2017
Finding an Evidence Based Care Provider— 'Know Your Options' Bonus Episode 1

When it comes to finding a doctor, does it ever make you feel completely stuck? How do you know if they will be right for you?

Today Stephanie and I are talking about why we recommend finding an evidence based care provider and how you can tell if the person you're interviewing (YES, you should absolutely be interviewing your doctors!) is practicing evidence based care. Stephanie is a doula, lactation consultant and certified childbirth educator so you will definitely want to soak in all of her amazing knowledge!

Grab your free download — Guide to Finding an Evidence Based Doctor!

Still have questions? Submit them and we will do our best to answer all of them on our Facebook Live this week on 9/20/17 at 1pm CST. We'll be discussing the major warning signs that your doctor might not be practicing evidence based care and answering YOUR questions.

Have you taken our quiz?! I have been so surprised by the results so far! Where Should You Give Birth Based on Your Personality?

Sep 18, 2017
193|8 Weeks of Bed Rest & Unmedicated Hospital Birth + Home Birth - Kelly Brown

At 31 weeks, Kelly’s perfectly healthy pregnancy and planned home birth took a drastic change when her water broke and it was bright red blood. Even though Kelly spent a week in the hospital and saw dozens of specialists seen, she didn't receive a firm diagnosis. She was only told that she may have had a minor placental abruption accompanied by AROM which then resealed itself. With little other information, Kelly was put on bed rest for 8 weeks and ultimately decided to change her birth plan and deliver at the hospital instead of at home. At 39 weeks and 6 days Kelly went into labor naturally, going from 5 to 10 centimeters just 20 minutes after arriving at the hospital. She had an unmedicated hospital birth with and episiotomy - just 12 hours of labor total. Her second son, and rainbow baby after 2 miscarriages, Stellan James, was born at home at 41+3 in just under 2 hours of labor.

Sep 14, 2017
192| Cesarean Birth Story & VBAC Homebirth Transfer - Jennifer Mason

Jennifer documents births as a birth photographer and believes that birth stories are love stories. She is also the co-founder of Birth Becomes Her and mama to two feisty girls. Jennifer grew up in the Midwest, living on a lake and loves the water. She has birthed two babies and describes her labors as sensual, and brave.  She is a VBAC mama, and says she relate well to those who are working to achieve a VBAC. You can connect with her on her website and Facebook.

Sep 12, 2017
191| Hospital Epidural Birth Followed by Two Natural Hospital Births - Erin Odom

Erin didn't do a lot of research before her first birth, although she wanted to have a natural birth since her mom had done so. She ended up being induced with pitocin, getting an epidural, and then an episiotomy which led to a 4th degree tear. For her next two births, she hired a doula, gave birth in the hospital with midwives, and had the natural births she wanted.

Sep 07, 2017
190| January Harshe's Birth Stories

In this episode January Harshe shares her first four birth stories: a cesarean, a homebirth transfer to cesarean, a homebirth VBAC, and an unassisted homebirth. You can hear her 5th and 6th birth stories on her podcast that she hosts with her husband, The Harshe Podcast.

Sep 05, 2017
189| Posterior Baby Birth Story & Postpartum Placenta Retention - Emmalina Rooney

A few years after getting a Lichen Scleroses diagnosis, Emmalina and Cam were expecting a baby. Her pregnancy was pretty textbook and she lost her mucous plug at exactly 40 weeks. She went into labor the following day. After 16 hours of intense labor, Emmalina received an epidural and was able to fully dilate. She pushed for 2 1/2 hours and then found her her baby was posterior and stuck.

The on-call OB performed an episiotomy and needed assistance from forceps and vacuum. Ruby-May was born at 1:06 am, May 7th, and spent 5 days in the NICU for inhaling fluids. After delivery, Emmalina's placenta detached but didn't deliver, requiring manual removal. At 9 weeks postpartum, Emmalina passed placenta tissue and had to have a D&C surgery. At 11 weeks PP, she passed the final piece of placenta and was able to begin a journey to physically and emotionally recover from her birth. Recently, Cam and Emmalina discovered Ruby-May had Sagittal Craniosynostosis- Premature fusing of the skull plates and underwent skull reshaping surgery. Ruby-May's skull diagnosis helped give Emmalina closure and reasoning for her difficult and traumatic birth.

Aug 31, 2017
188|Cesarean, Hospital VBAC, & Homebirth VBAC Birth Stories - Jordan York

Being surprised by her first pregnancy, Jordan found a provider off the recommendation of co-workers. After a whirlwind pregnancy of sickness and weight loss, Jordan delivered her daughter by c-section at 40 weeks and 2 days. Her postpartum was foggy and she struggled to get a grip on being a mother.

In 2014 Jordan became pregnant and knew she wanted a different experience: she wanted a vaginal birth. With the support of her husband, they were able to find a midwife who delivered in a hospital. After 41 weeks and 4 days she delivered their son vaginally and with out medication. Her VBAC was a healing moment for her, and with her postpartum period being clear she still felt as if something was missing from her birthing experience. The hospital required a lot of monitoring and she labored long and hard, she forget to be present while birthing her son.

When she became pregnant for the third time she knew this baby was to be born at home. After consulting with her midwife and doula they were able to help her find a home birth midwife. Planning for birthing at home was a new experience, having had two hospital births she had no idea what to expect. She loved the prenatal visits at her home, they allowed her children to really be involved in the whole process. Then after 4 days of prodromal labor and 4 hours of active labor it was time at 41 weeks and 6 days (her longest pregnancy), she delivered a daughter in her home.

Aug 29, 2017
187| Getting Pregnant After Infertility + Hospital Birth Stories - Lizzie McGee

Lizzie shares her infertility, pregnancy, and birth stories. The birth of her firstborn, Brooks, was 23 hours long. It was a very stressful labor due to Brooks' heartbeat dropping during contractions, a difficult time with her nurses as well as the epidural partially wearing off during transition. The second labor with Jace was half the time and completely different. It was a very relaxing labor that included soaking in a tub, watching a movie and having wonderful nurses. She had a difficult time during pushing as the baby's head was facing the wrong way.

Lizzie is a 32 year old mom of two sweet little boys, one of them being the first Ava baby. Lizzie lives in Saint George, Utah, with her husband and boys. They spend their free time riding side by sides in the trails and sand dunes near their house or having game nights with friends. She struggled for 4 years to conceive her firstborn and with her second was part of the first group of women to use the Ava Fertility Bracelet and gave birth to the first baby born from that group. She can be found on Instagram @mrslizziemcgee where she is more than happy to answer questions about the Ava Fertility Bracelet.

Aug 24, 2017
186|Hospital Birth Stories from a Mom that Loves Hospital Births - Jill Krause

Jill Krause is the founder of Baby Rabies. This is what happens when baby fever becomes something more. Jill Krause self diagnosed herself with baby rabies (it’s not an actual contagious disease, FYI) in the summer of 2007 when she became obsessed with getting pregnant. Learn more about the definition of baby rabies here. She started blogging about all things trying-to-conceive then. 10 years and 4 babies later, Baby Rabies is now a internationally recognized pregnancy and parenting blog. Connect with Jill on Facebook and Instagram.

Aug 22, 2017
185| Learnings from a Cascade of Interventions - Caitlin Shrum

Caitlin Shrum lives in the Bay Area, California with her husband, Andrew, and their son, Cooper (2). Her first birth caught her by surprise as she found herself in an emergency c-section situation. She quickly realized her experience wasn’t normal and has spent the past two years educating herself in order to set up her future births for success, and has found within herself a passion for the birth space and maternal care. In this episode, she walks us through her pregnancy and childbirth experience and how she has taken that experience and is channeling it into education and learning for herself and hopefully others down the line.

Aug 17, 2017
184| Planned Hypnobirth Turned Breech Cesarean Birth Story - Yunji de Nies

Yunji and her husband Kent had planned for a natural hypnobirth with a doula in a hospital. They spent weeks taking classes and practicing hypnosis at home, only to learn that their baby girl was breech at 36 weeks. Yunji did everything she could to get the baby to turn including acupuncture, moxibustion, yoga, special chiropractic treatments, handstands in the pool (yes really, every day!) and even an external cephalic version at the hospital. Nothing worked. She ended up having a scheduled c-section at 39 and a half weeks. Their baby girl Kaya was born on August 19, 2017, just over 8 pounds - her head was in the 98th percentile, which doctors told Yunji and Kent may explain why Kaya didn’t or couldn’t turn.

Aug 15, 2017
183| Twin Homebirth Birth Story - Rebekah Tarbert

On today's episode, Rebekah shares the story of her twins' birth at home. Rebekah is the coordinator of chaos in her south-of-Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania home. She and her husband, along with 4 children and two dogs live together in her late grandfathers home. Before she became a mom, she received her Masters Degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology and worked at a local hospital as an exercise specialist in the cardiac rehab unit. Rebekah has taken that passion for exercise, holistic health and faith, and transformed it into something she is able to do in conjunction with being a stay-at-home mom. She uses her passion to fuel others through her personal training and fitness ministry. In her spare time, if she gets any, she enjoys weight training, attending bible studies, and being creative. You can read her entire birth story on her Facebook page under the name: Rebekah Ashley and also on Instagram: @rebekahashley

Aug 10, 2017
182| Birth Center to Hospital Transfer Birth Story - Pheonix Wild

Pheonix shares a little bit about her 27 hour labor and birth. "My birth was pure chaos. Everything that I didn't plan to happen, was manifested to the tenth degree. With no knowledge of the inner meditation and control required of childbirth, I found myself relying on my midwife, partner and family to help usher in the birth of my son. Little did I know that the journey was only for me to take. My birth experience was this way though for a purpose. As a reminder to mamas everywhere to OWN their birth. To SILENCE their voices and tune into the new soul awaiting its earthbound entrance. Even in the midst of chaos, the journey was bliss. And I wouldn't change it for the world."

Aug 08, 2017
181| When You Want an Epidural But Can't Get One - Megan Baca

After an especially tough pregnancy, Megan was more than ready to welcome her third daughter into the world. Being that this was her third child, she went into this sure of two things: this child will be born on or before her due date (like her older sisters) and this mama definitely wanted an epidural. It wasn't until she found herself 4 days past her due date without a sign of labor that she started to suspect that this birth might not go as planned. Little did she know that was only the beginning.

Aug 03, 2017
180| Unplanned C Section, Breastfeeding Struggles and PPA - Courtney Byrd

A self-described "professional Type-A planner," Courtney feels she spent "too many hours" crafting the "perfect" birth plan... only to toss it out the window during labor and delivery. At 38 weeks, after learning Jackson was breech, and that she was Group B positive and only dilated .5CM, Courtney scheduled an induction for 40W6D; but, she went into labor 1.5 days before induction day.

At the hospital, Courtney learned that meconium in her fluid would require a NICU team at birth; and, while Jackson had turned, he was still in the occiput posterior position. Eventually, after several hours on Pitocin, Courtney's amniotic sac had resealed (which required an amnio-hook) and her contractions were ineffective, causing her cervix to swell and making the situation potentially dangerous for mama and baby.

After taking what she describes as "hit after hit," her birth story ends via C-section, including a failed epidural and hemorrhage. She and Wes welcomed baby Jackson at 8:38PM... 8 minutes after her previously scheduled induction time.

During postpartum, Courtney struggled with breastfeeding Jackson, and made the very difficult decision to stop after a few weeks. She also experienced intense postpartum anxiety for which she eventually (around 6 months pp) sought professional help through her Primary Care Provider and licensed therapist. During this time, Courtney relied on the tremendous amount of support she received from her husband, family, friends, and even her client, Sarah, who candidly shared her own new motherhood stories and encouraged Courtney to make the best decisions for her and her family. Today, about a month shy of Jackson's first birthday, Courtney has established her "new normal" and couldn't imagine life without the stubborn, giggly, busy little boy she made.

Professionally, Courtney is one of the voices behind Sarah Wells Bags as Sarah's primary marketing consultant. She loves supporting other new mamas in their breastfeeding and pumping journeys, wherever (and for however long) it may take them, and can't get enough new baby pics. Feel free to reach out to her anytime at


Aug 01, 2017
179|Three Meconium Hospital (almost waterbirth) Birth Stories - Jessey Christian

Before she met her midwife, Jessey assumed that her births would be long and full of complications. However, once she switched to a certified nurse midwife practice to birth at the hospital her goals were changed and fears diminished. Jessey has 3 births that all went smoothly with only a couple of minor exceptions. Each time Jessey's waters were broken there was meconium in the fluid, which caused last minute changes to the water births she had planned. With her first daughter the tub was used for laboring (but not delivery), at her second daughter's birth there was not time to fill the tub upon arrival, and her third daughter's birth was technically in the tub, but not without a (literal) twist!

Jul 27, 2017
178| Supported, Peaceful Hospital Birth Story - Rachel Rush

Rachel experienced a peaceful, unmedicated hospital birth with her now 14 month old son, Ananias. She was surprised to encounter so much support and encouragement from the doctors and nursing staff to accomplish a drug-free labor. Even though the seamless delivery left her feeling strong and empowered, her confidence was shaken as her son battled severe jaundice in the days following the birth due to her delayed milk supply. Thankfully, after a 48-hour NICU stay, Ananias came home healthy and happy. Rachel hopes to encourage other women through her story by revealing the potential beauty of hospital birth and by opening up about an issue many new mothers are ashamed to be facing - low milk supply.

Jul 25, 2017
177| Breech Cesarean Birth Story in Canada - Chylanne Schindl

Chylanne's pregnancy began with a hope for a natural home waterbirth but quickly turned into copious amounts of research and a panic to find someone to deliver her breech baby. She feels that she went from one end of the spectrum to the completee opposite; ending with a c-section. She says she didn’t enjoy being pregnant and was really looking forward to feeling redeemed through birth. She went through a grieving process when she found out her daughter, Mila, was breech because she felt like everything she wanted out of birth was ripped away from her. Chylanne says it was hard coming to terms with the potential of having to have a c-section, but after trying and doing everything she could and having lots of support from those that loved her (like her amazing friend, Jana, who has also gone through a natural birth and c-sections) she was able to feel the validation that she needed from her birthing experience.

Jul 20, 2017
176|Hospital Epidural Birth & Birth Center Birth Stories - Alexis Beach

Alexis' first labor with her son started with her water breaking, and contractions were close together and difficult to manage. She ended up with an epidural as she was near the end and feeling the urge to push! She ended up tearing from that birth in an unusual way. Her most recent birth was just 3 weeks ago with her daughter. She chose a birth center the second time, and her labor went completely differently. The labor was amazing the second time around with a short and intense pushing phase. Connect with Alexis via Kansas City Doulas.

Jul 18, 2017
175| IVF, Loss, and Induction Birth Story + NICU Stay - Chelsea Johnson

Chelsea and Clayton began trying to conceive in early 2014, before undergoing 2 rounds of IVF in 2015 that resulted in two pregnancy losses including their first son, Colt, who passed at 16 weeks gestation. Upon return from a belated honeymoon, they were delighted to find out they were pregnant without any medical intervention. Chelsea wished to give birth at a local Birth Center, but her plans changed due to high blood pressure. She was induced at 37 weeks and had an epidural-free labor and birth at a local hospital attended by her midwife and doula. Following a 10-day NICU stay, Chelsea and Clayton's son was finally welcomed home.

Jul 13, 2017
174| Sleeping through Labor and Natural Hospital Birth - Shanicia Boswell

I was 38 weeks and 5 days pregnant when I went into labor. Just one day prior, My daughter's father and I went to my mother's house to go to the state fair. I was so over being pregnant, I decided to walk the baby out. I went into labor early that morning around 2 AM. Thankfully, I slept through most of my labor and the next morning we took the two hour drive back to Atlanta. I stayed home until 7 PM then labored naturally at the hospital before giving birth.

Jul 11, 2017
173| Intervention-free Hospital Birth After Home Birth Transfer - Bethany Chambers

Bethany Chambers planned for a home birth but ended up transferring to the hospital at the end of her 24 hour labor due to decelerating heart rates from her baby. Once at the hospital, she still had an un-medicated, no intervention birth. However, 8 hours later, she had a severe hemorrhage and lost about half her blood. But as a nutritionist, she had worked hard to ensure her body was in optimal health so miraculously, she didn't have to have any blood transfusions. She discusses the MTHFR gene mutation as a possible factor in the hemorrhage. She came away from her birth feeling very grateful and empowered.

Jul 06, 2017
172| TTC: 4 Rounds of IUI, 3 Rounds of IVF + Waterbirth Birth Story - Rachel Wilber

Rachel Wilber is a criminal defense attorney, alongside her husband of four years, in private practice. Three years ago she quit her job as a public defender to pursue health and wellness, in part because she was having difficulty conceiving. Intuitively, she knew that stress was likely contributing to her infertility, and that she needed to create balance in her life if becoming a mother was to become a reality. After three years of infertility struggles (including surgery, procedures, four rounds of IUI, and three rounds of IVF) Rachel finally became pregnant with her daughter.

She had a healthy and complication-free pregnancy, which slowly re-instilled the confidence she had in her body. Despite being advised against giving birth outside the hospital due to a scar on her uterus, she chose a birth-center at 32 weeks pregnant. After years of medical interventions to achieve pregnancy, her natural water-birth was the empowering, gentle, and healing experience she had hoped for. You can read more about Rachel’s infertility journey and her life as a mom to her daughter and two Great Danes at or on Instagram @rachwilber.

Jul 04, 2017
171| Homebirth Stories & Breastfeeding with Supplemental Nursing System - Rachel Pally

Rachel shares her experiences preparing for and giving birth at home, as well as her struggles with breastfeeding and low milk supply, and using a supplemental nursing system with both of her sons. Looking back, she wishes she had gone easier on herself and wants to let other mothers know that they are doing great.

Jun 29, 2017
170| Infertility, IUI & 4th Degree Tear Rectovaginal Fistula - Mary Kate Gallagher

After 3 years of testing and fertility treatments, Mary Kate and Brad were excited to find out that their second IUI attempt was successful! On November 16, 2016, after 31 hours of labor and 4 hours of pushing, baby Reid was born. Mary Kate was able to get through her long labor by using the hypnobirthing techniques she learned during her pregnancy. At the end of the labor, vacuum extraction was required to give Mary Kate the ability to give birth vaginally. While she was overjoyed and in love with her new baby boy, Mary Kate discovered that she had suffered a 4th degree tear during labor. Mary Kate knew that this serious tear could lead to a difficult recovery, but a week later she developed another complication known as a rectovaginal fistula. Three weeks after the birth of her baby, Mary Kate underwent surgery to repair the fistula.

Jun 26, 2017
169| Dad Catches Baby on Side of the Road & Homebirth - Hannah Neas

After 2 very long and early hospital births with CNM's, Hannah and her husband, Gabriel, prepared for their first birth center birth. After early labor threatened at 28 weeks, she transferred back to her hospital midwifery team, trying everything to keep her 3rd pregnancy from turning into another preterm birth. After many medications and trips to L&D, her little third baby decided to take his time after all. 2 weeks of prodromal labor ended in a lightning fast delivery on the side of the highway at 39 weeks. They chose a home birth for baby 4 and had another precipitous labor and birth supported by midwives.

Jun 22, 2017
168| Four Preemie Baby Birth Stories & NICU Stays - Julie Martin

Julie Martin is a wife and homeschooling mother of 4 precious babies. Her first baby was born ten years ago, very unexpectedly, at 30 weeks by c-section; and, he spent two months in the NICU. Despite trying all the natural remedies and labor stalling methods, each subsequent baby was also born prematurely (33,33, and 32 weeks) by c-section, and each spent a month in the NICU as well. Never imagining being a c-section or NICU mommy, Julie has a heart to encourage women who have had birth experiences that just don't turn out like they anticipate.


Jun 20, 2017
167| Fast, Unmedicated Hospital Birth & Low Platelets - Katie Schneid

Katie had a very fast, unmedicated (due to time and low-platelets) hospital birth with an OB. She had the support of her mother and her husband. Though she prepared for labor with classes at a birth center, there was never a chance to use the techniques in the three hours she labored.

Dad Birth Story Series of The Birth Hour

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The one parenting book Katie read: Bringing Up Bebe
Jun 15, 2017
166| Three Beautiful Hospital Births & Mammary Hypoplasia - Sarah Dagger

Sarah Daggett had 3 very positive unmedicated hospital births with her OB and a doula. She struggled with low supply when breastfeeding and was eventually diagnosed with mammary hypoplasia, which is a condition she didn't know about before her diagnosis. Connect with her on Instagram at @welcometoourmess.

This episode is sponsored by Brentwood Home, a family-owned company that has been crafting mattresses and bedding essentials in Los Angeles for decades. Brentwood Home uses natural, ethically sourced materials that are safe for your family and the environment. Outfit your nursery with their top-rated crib mattresses, changing pads, and nursing pillows, made with healthy fibers like organic cotton and organic coconut husk. Visit and use the code birthhour for 15% off your purchase!

Jun 13, 2017
165| Active Pregnancy & Homebirth Birth Story - Andrea Thompson

As a girl who said she never wanted kids and never imagined having or holding her own baby, Andrea was delightfully and profoundly surprised by the miracle that is pregnancy and motherhood. After the shock of missing her first period turned into blissful anticipation, she approached pregnancy and birth as though she was training for the most important athletic event of her life. Her baby, Montana, entered the world quickly and beautifully, in the comfort and warmth of their own home.

Jun 08, 2017
164| Cesarean for Footling Breech Followed by VBAC - Jen Kamel

Jen planned a hospital birth with a midwife and was disappointed: after being told that her baby was in the single footling breech position, she found herself in the operating room after many months of envisioning a normal labor and delivery. She had a very painful recovery and knew she didn’t want to just schedule a cesarean for her next baby.

Her OB/GYN was very supportive, and assured her that she was an excellent VBAC candidate since she had her cesarean for breech. But when she went out into the world, many friends and family members could not believe that she would consider a VBAC, which led her to do tons of research and develop VBAC Facts. In this episode she shares her cesarean and VBAC birth stories as well as some really great information around VBACs in general!