The Happy Homebirth podcast is your source for positive natural childbirth stories, and your community of support, education and encouragement in all things homebirth and motherhood. This podcast takes a deep dive into the the authentic stories of mothers who have given birth (usually) at home, as well as the care providers who tend to them. Although typically upbeat and fun, Happy Homebirth is unabashedly unafraid to examine the rawness, the pain and the struggle of some birthing situations. Host Katelyn Fusco is a former student midwife, who joyously shares her experiences and provides a space for her guests to share theirs as well. From pre-conception to pregnancy, to postpartum and beyond, Happy Homebirth is a podcast that focuses on how victorious birthing mothers are from around the globe and encourages you to have a magical birthing experience. To learn more, head over to www.myhappyhomebirth.com
Ep 264:The Opposite Of A Traumatic Birth with Regina Lowenfield
Once you've experienced a traumatic birth, the best you can hope for from that point on is just-- a birth without trauma, right? It's best to just play it safe- not to push the envelope....?
Regina has been married to her husband Miles for 11 years and mother to their 3 children. Currently the Lowenfields live in Southern Indiana where they are building an events venue on their 75 acres. Today we'll hear how Regina and Miles experienced trauma, tried to cope, and then went big with their most recent birth experience.
Before we jump in, I want to share an important update with you all. The release of this episode coincides exactly with the 5 year anniversary of this podcast. I am just so thrilled to look back over the last 5 years and to celebrate the 264 episodes that have been shared in that time.
I also want to let you know that I am now going to be going on hiatus with the podcast. I am so excited to focus my energy on a few projects that the Lord has been drawing me into over the last year, and most importantly to spend every waking moment soaking up the beauty of my three little ones. I'm not sure if anyone's told you, but holy moly time goes FAST and one day you wake up and your oldest is seven years old and you wonder what the heck happened.
So in the meantime, know this: I am still honored to provide you with the deepest homebirth childbirth education through The Homebirth Collective or Happy Homebirth Academy, both of which are self-paced and accessible in the show notes, at myhappyhomebirth.com, or through my instagram bio.
I'm not going to be checking in on instagram or facebook often, so if you need anything, the best way to reach me is at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If this podcast has meant something to you, would you take a moment now to leave a review? It would mean so much to me.
If you've experienced a traumatic birth in the past, don't feel that you have to settle for 'not traumatic'. The opposite of a traumatic birth is not merely 'not traumatic', but it's ecstatic, and that's something that you can prepare for, pray for, and quit often attain.
Alright, my friends. What an honor this has been. I look forward to coming back in the future with more beautiful stories, but in the meantime, I am praying for all of you. That you'll enjoy your pregnancies, your births, your babies, your children. That you'll feel the love of the Lord covering you like a blanket, realizing that it's somehow even deeper and stronger than that insane love we feel for our babies. I'll see you back here next time.
Ep 263: VBA3C?! You’re Not High Risk Until You’re High Risk with Jan DeAngelo
You can't have a homebirth after 3 c sections, pre-eclampsia and being a "geriatric pregnancy", can you?
This week, we're speaking with Jan DeAngelo, 43 year old mother of 4 babies who changed EVERYTHING in between her third and fourth births. We'll hear how she took control of her care and her family's wellbeing, and gave birth with confidence to her most recent little one.
You're not high risk until you're high risk- Jan's midwife said this, and I find it such a beautiful way to approach each pregnancy individually. She wasn't focusing on the past, but looking at Jan and her pregnancy NOW. Instead of forcing fear and uncertainty onto her client, she trusted her abilities as a care provider, yes, but more importantly-- she trusted Jan's ability to give birth.
Your mindset plays such a role in your birth. As we shared, in the past, Jan's doctors pathologized her pregnancy and birth up and down, and Jan accepted what they had to say. Because of this, she saw herself as high risk- as a disaster waiting to happen. This totally changed for her fourth birth, when she realized that she was designed to give birth. She changed her mindset and recognized that her body and her baby were not pathologies. She was able to approach this pregnancy and birth with excited anticipation, along with the knowledge that she could and would do things differently.
Let's end with this-- it can be different this time. Maybe you've had a cesarean or several, maybe you've had preeclampsia or gestational diabetes or any number of "pathologies" in the past. Remember that this experience doesn't have to be the same as last time. Give yourself space to imagine something different. Visualize it, feel it. Find support who feels it, too. Of course, consider your own risk tolerance, but know that however events do unfold, you can experience your birth from a perspective of being the authority.
Ep 262: The Body-Mind-Birth Connection with Errika Horner
Which is more important in birth preparation and birth itself? The body--or the mind?
This week we're speaking with Errika Horner, a stay-at-home mom of 2 girls and blogger in her spare time, sharing healthy recipes and intentional homemaking inspiration on her website: thehomeintent.com.
As Errika's story demonstrated, it is possible to have a positive birth experience in the hospital, if that’s the option you feel you need this time around, keep this at front of mind, as it can be extremely encouraging to hear those positive examples.
Errika acknowledges that yes, her body was made for birthing, but it was her mind that made the difference between her two experiences. Errika had a much better understanding of what her body was doing in labor, and she visualized it all, even talking to her body during contractions. Errika feels that's what really made the second experience smoother and quicker.
And finally, you don't have to learn every single possible coping technique. In fact, having just a few specific strategies planned to use during the birth can help, so that you know exactly how to prepare and focus.
Ep 261: A Beautiful Shoulder Dystocia? With Coco Brown
When you imagine a beautiful homebirth, what comes to mind? Everything unfolds perfectly, or nearly perfectly, right?
This week, we're speaking with Coco Brown. Coco is a mother, currently navigating the labyrinth that is postpartum using ancestral knowledge and intuition to guide her. She is a maternal health and nourishment advocate sharing her intimate journey through home birth, postpartum, intuitive motherhood and well being through her online presence in hopes to deeply connect women and mothers around the world.
Our story with Coco will challenge the idea that beauty is equivalent to a perfectly smooth birthing experience. As the title suggests, there will be discussion of a shoulder dystocia, so of course please consider this as you listen. However, I do want to share that Coco is a wonderful storyteller and she shares her experience both gently and realistically... and spoiler alert, but all went well in the end.
Imagination. Many of you know that I view the world through a biblical lens, and something that's been on my mind for the last few months, and that relates in such a special way to this episode, is the idea of the imagination. Just like Coco shared how she took time to deeply envision her birth experience, and so much of it happened in the way that she'd put thought to. Lately, I've been reflecting on how The Lord uses our imagination for our good and His glory. We were given this ability to imagine-- to see things in our mind-- and it is such a gift. We're called to renew our minds and spirits and to think on whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—using our imagination to renew the mind and think on these things in our day to day life is the stuff of miracles. Use your imagination! Think on your pure, excellent, praiseworthy birth, mama.
Next, I want to focus on how, between her first pregnancy and birth and her most recent, Coco learned to lean into her intuition and to truly listen to it. This is what led her to choose to give birth in her own home, and to choose a midwife who truly embodied what that word is supposed to mean-- someone who trusts, believes in physiological birth, and who is there to wisely step in when the time is right. As Coco told this part of the birth story, I pictured these three women, with Coco as the spearhead, along with her two midwives flanking either side. Supporting her, keeping her safe, but always recognizing Coco's lead. That's what this relationship is all about.
And finally, a word on integration. Coco's journey from first pregnancy through her most recent birth has been full of ups and downs. Triumph and troubles. And labor is a microcosm of this very experience. I loved her labor depiction. "I am an ocean." Oceans are many things. Mighty, flowing, majestic, serene, cataclysmic, and tranquil. What a wonderful analogy for the process of integration. Taking all of the aspects of her journey thus far-- breaking them down and then building them back up together. Letting it all wash over her in waves. And like waves, the integration of an experience ebbs and flows. It's not all at once. But this ability to take our experience and pull it into our being-- absorbing the meaning and allowing it to transform us-- that is an abundant gift to ourselves and our families alike.
Ep 260: A Failed Epidural and a Victorious Homebirth with Brianna Peters
When you've had a hospital birth but your epidural failed, why not bring it on home for baby #2?
This week we're speaking to Brianna, who did just that-- decided to head home after the frustrating experience of a failed epidural. We'll hear how she was able to tap into her intuition and her primal instincts to make her homebirth a wonderful success.
Brianna experienced the intensity of labor with her first birth, as her epidural migrated and failed. Because she had expected to HAVE the epidural to cope, she struggled through her active labor and transition. However, what I find amazing is that when she gave birth at home, pain was a non-issue. Simply having coping skills available to her and knowing how to let her body do the work allowed her to experience a FUN, joyful birthing experience.
I also loved the way that Brianna invited her daughter, Ella in to her birth experience with her second baby. Ella was able to come in and see her mother give birth to her new baby sister. Brianna mentioned that she hopes her daughter will remember this experience, and I agree. I want to encourage those of you who have young children at your births to remember to tell them the story! Turn it into family lore! My daughter tells me little details about the time that she watched me give birth to her baby sister. "Remember when I tried to get in the pool," she'll say. Now, whether or not she actually fully remembers the event itself or the retelling and retelling of it-- does it really matter? In her mind, it's solidified as a beautiful, joyous strong experience. We have the ability to use storytelling to help our children understand the beauty of birth, whether they fully remember or not. Honestly, whether they're even present or not!
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Ep 259: Responsive Sleep for You and Your Baby with Taylor Kulik
Sleeping with your baby-- we've probably all done it once or twice, but is it actually safe?
This week we're speaking with Taylor Kulik. Taylor is an occupational therapist and holistic sleep and parenting educator who developed a passion for helping new mothers overcome their sleep-related fears and helping them get back to trusting in their intuition. She provides radical re-education about how babies and children should sleep, and offers holistic and responsive sleep support to parents who do not want to sleep train.
I know the topic of sleep can feel extremely sensitive to many, so know that this information is provided with love and respect, and it's given as an option for those who want or need it.
Please remember the opinions of my guest may not necessarily reflect my own and vice versa, and this show is not medical advice-- it's an educational tool-- so continue to take empowered responsibility for your health and your family.
Our communities are no longer designed in a way that is supportive to childrearing as a whole, truly. We're extremely silo'd and so unbelievably busy. On top of this, mothers are inundated with the message that they can have it all and they can do it all. They can lose the baby weight, sleep all night, work all day and come home and take care of their home and babies with love and compassion. This just isn't realistic. When we realize that we've been fed a lie, we can slowly begin to untangle ourselves from it, step by step. One of the best first steps that we may be able to make is reconsidering how we view infant sleep, as Taylor shared.
The lack of safety in sleeping with our babies comes with not being provided information on how to do it. There is, however, information out there to help you respond to your baby's nighttime needs, while also supporting your ability to get more rest, too. Taylor is doing a phenomenal job of sharing this information.
And finally, let's remember that we are our child's regulator. We get to be our child's regulator-- their safe, snuggly, trusted space. If we can approach this with the perspective that this not a curse, but a gift-- we can enjoy these young years, acknowledge that there will sometimes be struggle... there will sometimes be difficulty, give ourselves and our babies grace.
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Great Host and Great Podcast
I just started listening to this one (been listening to the VBAC Link Podcast obsessively). My third baby was a VBA2C, and I’m going to have another. The host is so good, particularly because she does not interrupt or say meaningless phrases like, “I love that!” She also gives her brief wisdom at the end of each interview, which is nice. The sound is also very good quality, by the host especially. I do think the interviews are too long. Forty five minutes should provide plenty of time, especially with the lack of interruptions. There is a lot of random information that women provide that I feel should be edited out (like one woman going on about her house renovations)—too many anecdotes that are irrelevant. I also do not like hearing the husbands talk about the north story. It makes the wives giggly and nervous, and the men are just so ignorant of what women feel during this sacred process.
As a husband, I am thankful
As a husband, this podcast has really helped me engage with my wife’s pregnancy. It can be really easy to check out and forget that she’s pregnant but when I listen to these episodes, it reminds me of what’s coming in the next months. Seriously, thank you!
Great Tool for Childbirth Preparation
This podcast was one of my favorite tools when preparing for the birth of my first child. I love a good birth story, and this show delivers! Pun intended :)