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Category Archives: Homebirth

Get To Know Our Team! Pt 5

by Heidi

Candace is the newest member of our team! Not only is she bringing her amazing doula skills to our team BUT she is also going to be bringing her AWESOME photography skills too! We are so excited to announce our new BIRTH PHOTOGRAPHY add-on to our doula services. Stay tuned for more information on this! But for the meantime lets get to know Candace <3

Tell me about yourself:

I’m  a full time mom, but I like to include my family in as many of areas of my life – being anywhere outside, road trips, travelling anywhere in the world, photography, surfing. I also enjoy a glass of red wine and a good board game.

What is your favourite meal?

Real, authentic, northern Chinese food. Or Thai food. Or some real street tacos.

What is your spirit animal and why?

I have no idea. I’ve always been drawn to lions – strength and courage, loyalty and protection.

Favourite Colour?

Blue

If you had a million dollars how would you spend it?

Pay off student loans, put money away for kids, design my dream home, travel to a new country every year. Secretly deposit money into peoples bank accounts who need it.

What are you watching on Netflix right now?

At this exact moment, Jane the virgin. When I’m editing- how i met your mother.  Stranger things & Australian Instant Hotel

What as the last book you read?

Rising strong by Brene Brown

If you could have dinner with anyone dead or alive who would it be and why?

My great Grandma – people say we are a lot alike but I only had met her when i was a young toddler

What would you do if you knew you could not fail ?

Write a book

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?

My camera – being able to capture real and raw moments, brokenness, smiles, joy, laughter, tears – everything.

What makes you felt most empowered?

Being with people who believe in me and what I do. Looking back on hardships I’ve been through and how strong they made me.

How did you know you wanted to be a doula?

– oh man – I just KNEW.  After the first birth I was part of, I was hooked. The intensity, the love, the teamwork, the strength, just, ALL OF IT.  After I had my first baby, the support I had was the driving force that held me up when I felt like giving up, and i wanted others to have the same.

What is the most rewarding part about your job?

When the first cry is heard! The post birth talk – “wow, I didn’t think I’d get through , but look, I DID IT”

What is the hardest part of your job?

Being on call with kids is hard! When I’m on call, my kids are on call, my husband is on call, my mom (the babysitter) is on call.

How do you wind down after attending a birth?

 A bath, cuddling my own kids, and sleep.

What is crucial for every woman to understand about her birthing experience?

You have options options options. Have a support team that doesn’t have hidden agendas or a biased opinion on birth – a team that supports you and your birth plan. Your body was created for birth – from conception, to nourishing and growing a baby in utero, to labour – every part of the journey is meant to happen and your body was made for it.

Get to know our team! Pt 4

by Heidi

Edolbina is our free spirit. She often finds herself abroad with her family doing missions work for 6 months at a time. When she is home we love having her teach our private prenatal and private group sessions. Her ability to connect to moms of all ages and uplift them is so inspirational.

Edolbina profile photo

Tell me about yourself :

I’m a wife and mom of 3 littles (5, 3 and 1 year old), all born at home. My oldest was born in the Philippines, where we were missionaries at the time. My youngest 2 were born in Chilliwack, in the water. Giving birth was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but the beauty it brought was worth every second.

While we count the lower mainland as our home base, I’ve spent most of my adult life hoping from country to country, and now I get to bring my family along! Its chaotic and fun and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. We spend 3-6 months of the year out of the country, serving as missionaries in different capacities. Its wonderful and challenging and I feel very blessed!

What is your favourite meal?

 I’m not someone who likes to eat the same thing all the time. We don’t often repeat meals in our house, but my favourite type of food would probably be Vietnamese. Or Thai. Or sushi or maybe Indian. See?!

What is your spirit animal and why?

A bee! Resourceful, always moving and difficult to replace 😉

Favourite Colour?

I love a deep green, I’ve been loving the jewel tones lately.

If you had a million dollars how would you spend it?

Easy, doing what we do now! Taking our family on international adventures and building up the communities there.

What are you watching on Netflix right now?

I’m of the rare breed that does not have Netflix! But, when I do watch TV, I enjoy a good action adventure.

What as the last book you read?

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

If you could have dinner with anyone dead or alive who would it be and why?

Stuart Mclean. He was a master storyteller and heavily influenced my 20’s. I cried real tears when he passed.

What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

Start a birth clinic in rural central america.

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?

Community. As a mom of 3 busy kids, having the support of a community has been the biggest blessing! I honestly don’t know how I would be able to keep going without the friendship and camaraderie that I’ve found in our community.

What makes you felt most empowered?

Teaching women about labor and birth. It is my biggest passion to see women educated and empowered to make choices that are best for themselves, their baby and family.

How did you know you wanted to be a doula?

When my sister-in-love was pregnant with my nephew. I spent hours rubbing her belly and exploring the world of pregnancy with her. It ignited something in me and I haven’t looked back! I fell in love with birth, hard. So much so, that, at the encouragement of my amazing husband, I trained as a midwife! We moved to the other side of the world, where I lived, loved and breathed birth at a rural clinic. I became a certified professional midwife in 2015. While my career as a midwife is on hold now (raising my babies comes first these days), I know I will continue down that road, when the time is right.

What is the most rewarding part about your job?

Watching women do something that they thought was too difficult. Seeing them overcome obstacles, self-doubt, poverty, and fear to bring their babies into this world. Also, being able to witness the “in between” of a baby in the womb and a baby in the world, Its truly the most beautiful thing! It will never cease to amaze me.

What is the hardest part of your job?

Being on call, day and night, can get old pretty quick. But I have to say, the baby snuggles are WELL worth it.

How do you wind down after attending a birth?

Usually a hot shower and a long sleep! When I need, I have a dear friend who I can verbally process births with. She encourages me after hard births and rejoices with me at the beauty that we are invited to witness.

What is crucial for every woman to understand about her birthing experience?

I would want her to know that her body was created to birth this baby! Her baby will come at the right time, when it needs and to trust the process.

Heidi, Owner, Yellow Bird Birth Inc.

Professional Doula Services | Placenta Encapsulation | Prenatal Classes

Get To Know Our Team! Pt 1

by Heidi

For the month of August we will be focusing on a different team member each week on the blog and Instagram. I am super excited for this. It’s a great way for everyone to get to know our team better. Some of us are new around here, and others have been here a while. 

First Up Is Me!

Hi I’m Heidi. I’m married to my wonderful husband Jacob of 8.5yrs and we have 3 crazy, wild daughters: Jenessa 4.5yrs, Meredith 2.5yrs, and Ada-Marie 7wks.  I am a Preschool teacher by trade but traded in the paint brushes and puppets after ten years to become a placenta encapsulater and new owner of Yellow Bird Birth. When I’m not running around chasing my kiddos, answering emails or (as my oldest puts it) “playing with placentas”, you’ll find me sipping on a cup of tea reading a good book or cooking up a mean roast beef dinner. Cooking is definitely one of my passions along with riding shot gun in one of my husband’s hot rods (’68 cutlass or ’89 mustang). I love being a mom, every day is different and has new challenges, but it’s also a lot fun, I take a lot of pride in raising my “girl squad”.

What is your favourite meal?

SUSHI SUSHI SUSHI, and maybe a side of Tacos thrown in there too. Food is my love language.

What is your spirit animal and why?

Killer whales!  They are loyal to their families and are just so majestic!

Favourite Colour?

Blue…. And dare I say Pink is my least … ironic I know..

If you had a million dollars how would you spend it?

Pay off my bills/ mortgage, and then buy a small trailer on a lake in the Okanagan as a vacation home… I just love it there.

What are you watching on Netflix right now?

Does ‘The Wiggles‘ count ?   I haven’t had time to watch something that’s not kids related in a long time….

What as the last book you read?

I’m actually in the middle of a book called “The German Midwife” by Mandy Robotham. It’s a fictional book about a midwife in the Nazi concentration camps during WWII. FABULOUS read.

If you could have dinner with anyone dead or alive who would it be and why?

My Grandma Angell or Grandma Ferguson, I really wish I could have heard more of their life story before they both passed away. They both had so much wisdom I wish I could have soaked up.

What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

Oh this is a tough one! Probably become a Midwife. It’s the amount of schooling that is really holding me back!

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?

COFFEE…. But seriously, probably the sunshine, It would be dreadful not being able to ever have sun light again.  You wouldn’t be able to experience the full beauty of nature without the sun, flowers wouldn’t bloom,the warm spring breeze wouldn’t have the same effect….

What made you feel the most empowered?

Giving Birth after 4 miscarriages! It wasn’t an easy or textbook perfect birth, but I was finally able to bring our first born earth side and that feeling was so powerful!

What is the most rewarding part about your job?

Knowing I was able to help other women receive support that they may not have had if there wasn’t a doula with them.

What is the hardest part of your job?

Honestly, it would be the balancing act of being a mom and working from home. 100% mom +100% business owner =  Not enough hours in the day.

What is crucial for every woman to understand about her birthing experience?

Its YOUR BIRTH. Become educated in what your rights are as the birthing person. Informed choice is so important, and very freeing if there are tests and exams you don’t feel comfortable with. Ask as many questions as you want!

 

 

Heidi, Owner, Yellow Bird Birth Inc.

Professional Doula Services | Placenta Encapsulation | Prenatal Classes

 

Brenna’s Birth Story

by Heidi

“Thinking and worrying is counterproductive for oxycontin release and therefore birth.” -unknown

Photo Credits : Dori Marie Photography

 

Photo Credits belong to the wonderful Dori form Dori Marie Photography

This quote sat on my bedside table for my entire pregnancy. I’m an anxious over thinker, especially when I have a big life change happening. And childbirth is a big life change! My first childbirth experience did not work out the way I had expected and left me with trauma that I knew I needed to address and work through before I could have another baby. So, for my second pregnancy I spent a lot of time working through my fears and educating myself on childbirth. Being a birth doula and childbirth educator really helped me learn what birth is really all about. Supporting and standing next to birthing women and educating families about childbirth gave me the confidence that I could have the birth experience I desired.

The day before I went into labour my dog wouldn’t leave my side, she intuitively knew my body was preparing itself for my baby to come. I was thankful for the little warning. 2am my contractions gradually started every 10 minutes until about 6am where they stopped. I assumed I’d just been having false labour so I went back to bed and slept for an hour where then my contractions started again. I was so thankful my baby gave me a rest before the marathon. The plan was to have a home birth, I loved the idea of not having to transfer to the hospital and deal with the stress of a car ride and a new environment with people I didn’t know. That really gave me a peace that helped me get through my labour. By 11am my midwife and doula were with me as I labored in my bathtub. I remember saying to my doula “I feel great! I feel in control of what my body is doing, this is awesome!”

After a while I knew my body was transitioning and I needed to get out of my bathtub. I walked around for a bit and had the midwife check me; 6cm dilated, I was so close and still felt so in control. I then moved into the birth pool where I continued to labour and my water broke. I started to progress faster and eventually started to feel the pushing urge. Some time had passed, and I started to feel discouraged, fears of my last birth started to creep into my head telling me I couldn’t pull this off. My midwife eventually suggested having me get out of the birth pool and onto my bed, she checked me again and offered some guidance on how to push correctly. The change of scenery and encouragement from my birth team gave me the extra confidence I needed to finish this. With my husband holding my hand and my dog snoring next to us our son was born just after 4pm.

I faced my fears and allowed my body to do it’s work, and I was rewarded with a lovely chubby little boy.

 

Brenna- Birth Doula & Prenatal Instructor
Yellow Bird Birth Doula

www.yellowbirdbirth.com | Visit us on Facebook and Instagram!
Professional Doula Services | Placenta Encapsulation | Prenatal Classes

 

Its YOUR Birth.

by Heidi

 

You will have the birth you and your baby both need.

That statement resonated with me as I was preparing to birth my third and final baby. I was starting to get discouraged, here I am planning on having a Vba2c ( vaginal birth after 2 caesarians) and I was overdue. My first darling baby was born promptly on her due day ( 56 hour labour ending in a C-section), my second was born 11 days early ( 36 hrs of labour ending in a C-section), I knew the longer I went over due the chance of having a 3rd C-section loomed over my head. The odds were against me and I wanted to prove that I could have a vaginal birth, I wanted to prove to all the nurses and the obstetricians that I wasn’t crazy for attempting.

I was trying every which way to induce labour. I ate my 6 or 7 dates diligently since I was 35wks, I ate all the spicy food, climbed all the stairs until my legs turned to jello, drank litres of red raspberry tea, kept up with my evening primrose capsules both orally and vaginally, and even had sex every day… sometimes multiple times if my husband was lucky. Nothing worked.

It was when I was at my acupuncture appointment that I realized I needed to stop being so uptight about trying to get this baby earth side and start focusing on what I needed from this birth.  I needed to have confirmation that I didn’t take the easy way out with my previous births by consenting to a caesarian. I needed a reminder that each baby came the way they were meant. I needed to trust my instincts and my ability to make informed decisions about what steps to take during birth.

My c-section scar started having shooting pains like I never felt before, I KNEW was time. I had to make my trek down the highway to the neighbouring city as my local hospital was on diversion. I was triaged, baby was being monitored, and the OB came in to make sure my uterus wasn’t rupturing (that’s the risk when trying for a vaginal birth after a c-section). Everything looked fine. He asked me if I wanted to have a baby tonight. I looked at my husband and with a clear mind I said yes! I didn’t argue or fight for a VBA2C. I knew in that moment I needed to have my baby in my arms. I knew I couldn’t wait any longer, 6 days overdue was long enough.

I had the birth I needed, not the birth I planned and dreamed of. I experienced the weeks of false labour that some women get and the frustration of the contractions not turning into anything significant. I experienced the frustration of being overdue. I knew healing from a 3rd caesarian was going to be hard, I knew baby needed to be born this way… I just didn’t know why. I trusted my instincts, no one forced me to have the c-section. I chose it and I’m proud of the choice I made.

 

Heidi, Owner, Yellow Bird Birth Inc.

Professional Doula Services | Placenta Encapsulation | Prenatal Classes

5 Benefits of Delayed Cord Clamping

by Heidi

What is Delayed Cord Clamping?

Delayed cord clamping is a birth practice where the umbilical cord is not clamped or cut beyond 30 seconds of baby’s delivery. Many times, the cord will be clamped and cut after the umbilical cord has stopped pulsating or after the placenta has been delivered.

Here are some benefits to this birth practice!

 

1. The Placenta Contains a Third of Baby’s Blood

Research shows that when we delay clamping the umbilical cord, the baby will receive up to 30% more of the fetal-placental blood volume than it would have with immediate cord clamping.

 

2. Baby Receives an Increase of Oxygen

A full count of red blood cells provides the increase of oxygen to baby for the transition to life outside of the womb. Not only is baby receiving extra oxygen but he also receives the millions of stem cells and immune cells that are inside the umbilical cord.

 

3. Prevention of Iron Deficiency/ Anemia

The American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists state that waiting just 3 minutes may prevent iron deficiency (anemia) during the first year of baby’s life. Babies receive a huge influx of iron-rich red blood cells when the umbilical cord can continue pulsating. What’s interesting is that, Mom’s breast milk has been shown to be low in iron levels. Research has shown that this extra increase of iron storage lasts in baby up to 4-6 months which is about the time that iron-rich foods are being introduced.

 

4. Benefits for Preemies

Of course, some preemies need to be rushed to NICU or receive immediate medical attention right after delivery. But for infants born before 37 weeks, the Society of Obstetricians & Gynecologists of Canada state that, cord clamping should be delayed by at least a minute after birth to reduce the need for transfusion and the potential for bleeding in the brain. It’s also been shown that preemies have fewer heart problems, better blood pressure, and less anemia.

 

5. Uninterrupted Cuddles

Last but not least! Delayed cord clamping promotes bonding between Mom and baby just by the fact that they are still attached to each other and forced to cuddle and get to know each other. Those first minutes of skin to skin between Mom and baby release several different hormones that create the everlasting love and bond that is so important. These first cuddles also encourage early breastfeeding!

 

If delayed cord clamping is something you choose to do at your birth make sure to tell your birth team (partner, doula, sister, etc.) and have it written down in your birth plan. Those first moments after delivery can be fast-paced and it’s always good to have someone on your team remember to tell your care provider your wishes in case you can’t.

There are always risks to any birth practice and it’s always a great idea to talk the benefits and risks out with your care provider to decide what is the right choice for you and your baby.

Researching decisions like this can have a big positive impact on your birth and baby!

 

With Love,
Brenna

Birth Doula & Prenatal Instructor
Yellow Bird Birth Doula

Why Write a Birth Plan?

by Heidi

Birth Plan, Birth Preference, or Birth Map, whatever you choose to call it, writing down your ideal birth is a great way to communicate with your birth team. Before I elaborate, it’s important to know that birth plans should have flexibility and not all births go according to plan.

Birth plans are great opportunity for you and your partner to sit down and discuss what your birth wishes are, and what you want to avoid; it encourages you to be educated and responsible for your care (also known as informed consent). It encourages you to make clear goals and allow changes to be made if needed (not wanting to use any pain management vs receiving an epidural because your exhausted for being in labour for a while and need a few hours of sleep). If you and your birth team know what your preferences are in different scenarios, then everyone is on the same page and help you best articulate your desires accordingly.  Don’t shy away from having a few copies with you at your birthing location, they can easily be lost or misplaced, and review with each of your support team (doula, partner, mom, sister… whoever is going to be out your birth).
Some things you may want to include in your birth plan:
  1. What kind of environment do you want to birth in (lights on or off, music playing or quiet, home or hospital, etc)?
  2. Do you plan to eat or drink during labour?
  3. Do you want staff to offer you pain meds?
  4. Who do you want present at the birth?
  5. What positions do you want to labour in?
  6. Do you want to stay in bed or do you want to move freely?
  7. Do want your care provider to break your water or do you want it to break on its own?
  8. In case of needing a c-section, do you have any special requests?
  9. Actively coached while pushing or do you want to follow your body’s direction?
  10. Do you want a mirror to be used when baby is crowning to connect with baby?
  11. Can forceps or vacuum be used to during delivery?
  12. Do you have any religious or cultural practices you want to everyone to be aware of?
  13. Cut the cord right away or delay cord clamping?
  14. Do you want baby to have skin to skin with you right away?
  15. Do you have any plans for your placenta?
And let’s be honest, the last thing you want is to be bombarded with questions and having to make decisions when you are in active labour and exhausted, so if there are others who can answer questions on your behalf  the more time and effort you can put on focusing to bringing your bundle of joy earth side.
Side note, we cover ALL of these topics in our Prenatal Intensive Classes and we’d LOVE for you and your partner/support person to join us! Click HERE for more info.

 

Heidi, Client Care Specialist , Yellow Bird Birth Inc.

Professional Doula Services | Placenta Encapsulation | Surrogacy Support | Prenatal Classes | Business Support

Supportive Companions

by Heidi

Research has shown that the support of a doula during pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period can help growing families feel more confident and lead to a more satisfying birth experience and enhanced parent and infant bonding. During pregnancy and birth, labor doulas provide education, reassurance, and non-judgmental support. After birth, postpartum doulas provide ongoing education, emotional support and expert advice on all things baby!

The physical comfort measures that a labor doula can provide can help reduce pain and increase comfort during birth.

You don’t need to navigate the uncertainty of labor, birth and parenting a new baby alone. Your doula can be there with you, every step of the way.

 

Yellow Bird Birth

Fraser Valley’s Premier Doula Group providing everything you need for your BEST birth and postpartum!

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram

 

Why I’m Hiring A Birth Photographer, Finally..

by Heidi

Why I’m hiring a Birth Photographer, Finally…

So this is my 3rd pregnancy/birth.  It’s coming up fast next month and we’re planning a home birth this time around.  Midwives, doula, family, the whole works will be there in our home.  Now why can’t one of these people simply grab a camera and take some photos during my labour? Sounds like it would be easy enough, especially with technology these days even on our cell phones!

I want to capture those very special once in a lifetime moments of my baby entering the world as I’m sure you do as well. But after my other two births I realized that I shouldn’t leave it up to an amateur. While my family and friends tried their best and grabbed my camera out of my labour bag to snap some pics, they mostly turned out blurry and grainy.  Strange angles and poor lighting.  I loved that they also wanted to save these memories for me but I shouldn’t have to put that responsibility on their shoulders.

So this time I’m hiring a… BIRTH PHOTOGRAPHER!

I want a professional, practiced and trained in low lighting (because let’s get real, most babies come at night) with high quality equipment.  It makes a difference! If you’ve ever been to a birth with a photographer you will be amazing by how sneaky and quiet they are,  they creep around the room finding the best angles and making sure to capture all the special moments of your strength bringing your baby into the world. It takes skills to do this! Trust me… you want someone who knows birth and understands the phases of labour so they can be one step ahead at all times.

I wish I had realized all this the first two times around but for my 3rd birth I am ecstatic that I can look back in years to come and see my strength, struggles and how my birth team surrounded me to bring my baby earth side.

I want photos of my mom holding my hand.

My husband whispering loving words to me while I lean on him.

My sisters boiling water in the kitchen to make tea.

How our living room looked with a birth pool set up and twinkle lights surrounding us.

My midwife calmly watching with assurance of my ability to birth.

These are important to me, I want to remember these things and I can’t wait to share them with you!

Also, my very favorite local birth photographer is Dori Marie Photography.  She was kind enough to share her work with us and I highly recommend this sweet woman! I know you will LOVE her.

www.dorimariephotography.com

Yellow Bird Birth Services

Fraser Valley’s Premier Doula Group providing everything you need for your BEST birth and postpartum!

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Birth Out Loud: In The Philippines Pt. 1

by Heidi

Birth

Two births (First in Philippines, second in Canada) and midwifery clinic in a rural village.

“I went back to work when he was 4 weeks old and started attending births, mostly doing prenatals in our midwifery clinic in the rural Philippines.  I watched one birth with him on my back and quickly asked if I could take a couple more months off because it was still too fresh. But he was on my back constantly while I did prenatals and did postpartum and then I started attending births when he was 4 months old, catching again. It was a whole different experience and it was still very fresh even though it had been a couple months.  I found my empathy for these women was through the roof and it definitely changed how I practiced midwifery. Once you have been through birth you’re like.. oh yes, I get it, I understand what you are feeling.

One month we had 39 births at the clinic where I attended at least half of those. Sometimes as an assistor, sometimes a charter or primary. It would get intense.  It’s different when you have a kid as he was still nursing. My husband would bring him in and I would quickly nurse him between contractions if I was the primary in the birth room. Sometimes it would be 20 hours of birth before I would get to see my 4 month old again so there was definitely an aspect of sacrificing time with my son in order to do it but my husband was awesome.  He filled in, took up all the slack that I was giving in the mothering aspect.

Having my newborn around the clinic was awesome.  It was a big family, all the midwives there were family so there was always someone there to play with him. Someone to hold him, even at 2am because he was a night owl. Especially if I was in a birth then I could always hear him in the hallway which was the hardest part for me.  Being in an intense birth and it’s so emotional, then hearing him cry and knowing I couldn’t go to him because I had a responsibility in the birth and I had to be a midwife first before I could be a mother.  That was hard and something I didn’t expect.”

 

Yellow Bird Birth Series

Fraser Valley’s Premier Doula Group providing everything you need for your BEST birth and postpartum!

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