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Get To Know Our Team ! Pt3

by Heidi

If I had to describe Brenna using 10 words or less I’d would use: Soft spoken, Empathetic, Strong, Driven, and Full of Passion. She builds relationships with her birthing mommas with such easy. We love having her be a part of the Yellow Bird Birth team <3

Tell me about yourself :

My husband and I live on his family’s dairy farm in Greendale. He works with the cows and I do the bookkeeping. We joke that he’s a doula for cows and I’m a doula for humans. We’ve been married three years, and in that time, we’ve built a house and have two children. We love to garden, hang out at the river with our dogs, and be home bodies. Our daughter is two years old and is beautifully independent and wild and keeps us on our toes! Our son is two months old and is so squishy and cute.

What is your favourite meal?

If you were to ask me this when I was a kid, I’d say my Grandpa’s spaghetti. Now I can’t really pick one thing. Anything spicy! I love Mexican and Indian food. I also have a major sweet tooth!

What is your spirit animal and why?

A cat… They’re lazy and independent. They only really want to interact when they feel like it but are so lovely and kind natured at the same time. lol

Favourite Colour?

Green

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

I’d take my husband travelling.

What are you watching on Netflix right now?

I just finished watching Black Spot and When They See Us

What as the last book you read?

Educated

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

My Grandma, I have so many questions about her life.

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

I’d go to school to be a Midwife and deliver babies in third world countries.

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?

Honestly, my husband (so cheesy I know) but he takes care of me better then I can take care of myself!

What makes you felt most empowered?

Jesus. Knowing that I’m valuable and worthy and that He covers all my dark stuff makes me know I can do anything.

How did you know you wanted to be a doula?

I’ve always known I wanted to work with women. I nannied for a family when I was just out of high school and the lady, I worked for had just been certified as a Doula and wanting to go to school to be a Midwife. The way she described advocating and supporting women in their most vulnerable moments I knew I wanted to do the same.

What is the most rewarding part about your job?

Seeing that look of “I did it” on a woman’s face right after she’s had her baby. Seeing families be born. It is the most raw and beautiful thing I’ve ever been apart of. It never gets old.

What is the hardest part of your job?

Being on call

How do you wind down after attending a birth?

I sleep! And hang out with my family.

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

That she has a voice and can birth however she wants! That fear has no right to be in her space and that her body knows exactly what it’s doing.

 

Heidi, Owner , Yellow Bird Birth

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

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

 

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

Dear 3rd trimester Momma

by Heidi

WE UNDERSTAND:

It’s hard looking down and seeing what once was ankles, are now unrecognizable and have been consumed by these thick puffy cankles. Those sexy little sling back sandals you bought to match your dress are now impossible to fit, you might as well try and place a whole cow into a single sausage casing.

WE UNDERSTAND:

That you are tossing and turning each night trying to get to a good night’s rest. Sleep has become a foreign concept, and if another person comments on how tired you look, you may just burst into tears. Don’t they know that you now have a worn out path where your new hardwood floor once was because you have been pacing back and forth all night long. Pregnancy insomnia is such a struggle.

WE UNDERSTAND:

That there is nothing glamorous about the end of pregnancy. There is no shame in wearing those adult diapers or thick panty liners you are trying to hide under your jeans! Can’t be caught unprepared for a miscalculated sneeze or cough accident or better yet, JUST INCASE your water breaks in public? No one wants to be THAT pregnant lady.

WE UNDERSTAND:

That you are wanting to hide away in your home. If you receive one more text you or call you asking if baby is born yet, you will take a sledge hammer to your phone! And if another stranger (or friend) comments how huge you look, they may be unapologetically drowned in an unholy dose of pregnancy hormone rage that can’t be tamed.

WE UNDERSTAND:

The spilt juice on the floor will most likely be there tomorrow. After all bending, down to clean it may mean you’re on the floor for an extended amount of time, so you want to plan your day around cleaning that spill so you can be prepared to clean the baseboards, cupboards and fridge while your down there.

WE UNDERSTAND:

Waddling is no longer left to the penguins.

WE UNDERSTAND:

A crowded room is now your nemesis. No one likes sweat dripping down their back. Even if you had flashing lights and a wide load sign above your head, there is no way you’d be able to squeeze through the crowd, the classic “turn sideways, hold your breath and slide through” technique is no longer your friend. You either strategically find a space to spend your time (one that’s equally close to the food and beverages as it is to the bathroom but still in the cross breeze of the open windows), or your just ram your big O’ baby belly into people (making them feel as though it was they’re fault they bumped you) as you make your way across the room.

WE UNDERSTAND:

It’s frustrating waiting to see if every Braxton hicks you feel is going to be “THE REAL DEAL” this time, or that you have inspected that toilet paper you wiped to see JUST MAYBE you lost your mucus plug or had your bloody show.

WE UNDERSTAND:

All these things listed above will only be a faint memory the moment your babe is placed on your chest for the very first time.  Those sling back sandals you never really liked anyways. Lack of sleep was just building up your endurance for all those late night feeds. Those adult diapers and panty liners, just gave you extra cushion when you sat on a hard chair, that’s the real reason you wore them. You’d never ACTUALLY take a sledge hammer to your phone, after all how else would you be able to baby spam all your friends and family?  Your fridge and floors has never been cleaner since being pregnant.  Who ever said you waddled was jealous of your pregnancy swagger!  Crowded rooms just gave you an excuses to get out of those non-essential events that where going to bore you anyways. And really, inspecting your toilet paper after ever use of the bathroom just gave you something to do to pass the time.

 

Heidi, Owner, Yellow Bird Birth Inc.

Professional Doula Services | Placenta Encapsulation | Prenatal Classes

Stressed Spelled Backwards is Desserts

by Heidi

We all have those mile long lists of things that need to get done before baby arrives, you know the one, it includes painting the nursery, making sure all the shelves are secured to the wall and cleaning supplies are out of reach of small children, stocking the freezer with ready-made meals, buying the newest and greatest baby gadget on the market, and packing the hospital bags.  Often we can get consumed by the ever growing list, causing unnecessary stress and anxiety. We forget to take a deep breath, relax, and indulge in some self-care. For those of you who know me personally, know that I’m currently 28 weeks pregnant with my third and am currently in the midst of buying and moving to a bigger home around the same time baby is due; the stress and anxiety going through my brain is ridiculous. The irony of this blog post is definitely not lost on me, I’ve been actually laughing at myself as I wrote this. So how can we as pregnant women de-stress and relax? It’s not like we can grab that glass of wine anymore..

 

Breathing Exercises

Its amazing how deep intentional breathes can relax your body and allow the stress and anxiety to melt away. The best part is, breathing exercises can be done at any time or anywhere. When taking those deep through the nose breaths, you are increasing blood flow, improving posture, calming your nervous system (reducing the fight or flight response), and pausing in the midst of chaos to become focused and grounded. Bonus is, if you can learn to take deep intentional breathes while pregnant, it will become second nature and will help when you are riding those long waves of contractions when it’s time for labour, WIN- WIN!  Here is a very easy Breathing Technique I have been using called the 4-7-8 Method.

Get Outside and Exercise

Sunshine and Vitamin D is essential. The more fresh air you take in the more “clean” oxygen you are taking in which increases the serotonin (the happy hormone) you inhale, the happier you become. Going for a walk or any sort of exercise helps get those muscles moving, blood pumping, and help decrease any discomfort you are feeling such as backaches, relieves stress, and builds up stamina that is needed for the labour and delivery of your little on. Fresh air also gives you more energy and a clearer mind. After spending a few minutes outside you may notice an extra pep in your step and ready to take on the task at hand that was bogging you down a few minutes before.  Being able to get outside may not always be possible when we need it the most, so opening a window and taking some deep breaths while standing beside it is a great compromise.

 

Take a Bath

This one is my favourite. While it’s recommended not to take a bath that’s hot enough to raise our body temperatures to 102.2 degrees for longer than 10 minutes, a bath is a great way to wash all the anxiety and stress away. Turn the lights off, light some candles, play some of your favourite music, read a book or watch a movie, pour yourself some bubbly (bubble bath that is), and just relax back. Turn your mind off! Ignore the doorbell, and your phone. Soak in the ambiance, romance yourself. If you have any other children, this may be difficult, but I have had great success using this technique after mine have gone to bed for the night. My husband knows I needs a “mommy time out” and he is “mom duty” for the next hour or so!  

 

Be Productive

Sometimes getting down on all fours and scrubbing those stubborn stains off the baseboards or making some delicious backed goods (after all stressed spelled backwards is desserts) can be the best way for a person to work through their stress and anxiety. Bonus is if you’re in the late stages of your pregnancy as it’s said that being down on all fours can help shift baby into a great position for birth. It’s amazing how therapeutic scrubbing a floor or pounding down some risen dough is, for me at least, it’s when I do my best thinking, and am able to more often than not work out a solution for what is causing me to be stressed out or anxious. 

 

Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day, so why does the nursery have to be Pinterest perfect? Self-care is so important in any stage of life. If you can learn a way that works best for you to de-stress now, it will become a lifelong skill you can fall back on for the years to come. Pregnancy can be an overwhelming time for many women, but it also is a beautiful time to reflect and start bonding with your unborn child. So don’t let stress and anxiety control your pregnancy, take some time to enjoy the dessert 😉

 

Heidi, Client Care Specialist , Yellow Bird Birth Inc.

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

Love Local, Be Local

by Heidi

        Let’s talk local and community for a minute.

       Last night I had a great evening attending the Fraser Valley Boss Ladies networking event and ended up sitting beside a sweet woman who not only makes the most ADORABLE pies In A Jar but is also the creator of Loving Local in Chilliwack, BC.  She creates events/markets that bring vendors, live music, food trucks and so much more together.  I told her that she was awesome and how big of an undertaking that must be!  But honestly, I love her idea of bring local people together to create a community of support and empowerment.  For business and personally. She wrote this on her page:

Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success ~ Henry Ford

        I love this as it relates so much to building up your village around birth and raising children together.  I’m not talking communal living here, although how sweet would that be?!  I mean having people around you who build you up daily, pouring into your life and you into theirs.  They sit with you over coffee and listen to your struggles, they help you discover the answers, and shine joy back into you. They come alongside as your children grow to be beautiful role models and help guide them through the harder times.  Did you have this growing up?  Aunts and Uncles perhaps, or maybe family friends?  It made all the difference in my life… especially as a teenager, but you know what?  That village was created long before I became a teenager with the trust and love already established. I want this for my children.

 

Happy loving family. mother and child girl playing, kissing and hugging

Pregnancy is tough.  Birth is tough.  Raising children is tough.  It’s time to build your village.

If you don’t already have people in your “village”, I want to challenge you today to reach out.  Build relationships by joining groups (online and in real life), talking to your neighbors and creating a space in your home that is open for others to come in. It starts with you. Go and be local.

Also, check out Loving Local’s event in August called “Made In The Valley”.  I will definitely be there!

-Amanda, Owner & Doula

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

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Meet the Doula: Jaclyn

by Heidi

Welcome to our blog! It’s my turn to share about who I am with you lovely readers.

My name is Jaclyn and I live in the Fraser Valley. I define myself as a wife, mother, and a natural living/birth enthusiast. I met the man of my dreams when I was in my late teens, and 3 years later we were married and falling so deeply in love! Next came the most beautiful little girl, and just recently, a handsome baby boy! My family is my treasure and am daily reminded of how blessed I am to have them…even though they produce endless amounts of dirty dishes and sticky fingers! But I have always desired to have a large family so these 2 littles are just the beginning of many more babies and years of motherhood!Jaclyn Doula Hiking2

I find joy in being outdoors, drinking tea, singing and dancing throughout my house…and car, and in multicoloured/patterned fabrics with which I dress myself, my children, and my home!

My passions are for my faith, family, and for birth! My journey into the birth world as a doula started when I witnessed my sister’s giving birth to their first born babies (4 months apart, t’was a busy year). I was overcome with a love for labouring women and the power they posses. I was also blessed to have a mother who was a doula. She passed on her trust in birth and knowledge of a woman’s power through labouring and raising her babies. I was taught to have confidence in and love myself deeply, something that I feel every woman needs in every area of life.Jaclyn Pregnant

Yellow Bird Birth is truly an adventure for me. When I “grew up”, I had only dreamed of being a wife and mother (which I love as I have said before), but I now I get to pour out my passion for birth into others lives as a doula and placenta encapsulator in Chilliwack and Abbotsford. And I do pour love into placenta prep! I feel called to this work and find great rewards in it. My hope is to change the birth world, to encourage families to stand up for their right’s and desires in maternity care, to show our community how valuable doulas are and how much they are needed, but most of all, to witness families bring their babies earthside safely, peacefully, and joyfully!

-Jaclyn

Birth Doula, Placenta Encapsulator and Mother Of Two

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Meet the Doula: Amanda

by Heidi

Hi! I am so glad you have stopped by to visit our blog. Allow me to introduce myself…

I’m Amanda, a birth doula and prenatal fitness instructor. I have a super manly husband of just about 5 years whom I love to pieces and is my rock. Our favorite adventures are long road trips together where I sing loud and he rolls his eyes but secretly loves it! We have two beautiful young children that are full of life and excitement.

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I love… Coffee. Dancing. Hiking. A clean house. Birth.

In the forest is where I get grounded. I often find myself craving the feeling of walking long windy trails full of tall trees and refreshing energy. I crave pushing myself to higher places with views of the world. My children are calmed by the outdoors, they have come to an age where they just sit and take in the beauty and I love watching them experience a life outside of the city.

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I boost my self-confidence through dance. I taught women’s dance/fitness movement for a long time before becoming a doula and learned that the more I danced, the stronger I became in my own body and self-esteem. To love your body and how it moves is such a gift, especially through pregnancy.

It feels like a life time ago but I actually started out in quite a different career than birth. I was trained in architectural design and worked as a designer/drafter for many years until I had my babies and dreaded the thought of leaving them each day.  A random fact about me.. I use to also race drag cars!

My love of birth started with my mother. She was trained as a doula over 20 years ago and while she doesn’t work with clients except her daughters anymore, she taught us a lot about the power of a woman’s body and its ability to birth and sustain the life of a baby. My other influence was my sister-in-law Edolbina who is very close to completing her midwifery training. She shared her Ina May Gaskin books with me and I was hooked! I had the privilege of training with Ina May last month and was mesmerized with her wisdom and excitement for pregnancy and birth.

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Being a doula is a passion for me and while I love holding those squishy new little babies, my favorite part is watching a woman become a mother. Assisting her and her partner in learning and making informed decisions during their pregnancy to when their baby joins the world. I love encouraging and helping during each tightening and seeing women find a strength that they never knew they had.

I am feel blessed to be on this journey.

-Amanda
Birth Doula and Prenatal Fitness Instructor

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