First I’ll just start by saying before I had my son in 2017, I was totally against having a baby at home, let alone without a medical doctor there. I was (and still am) a healthy red head. When I got pregnant with my son, I was told that serious medical complications can come after birthing a child because I’m a red head. Needless to say, I went into my pregnancy, scared and anxious because of what I was told. I went into the hospital to be induced and 37 hours later, I finally had my son using every type of medical intervention just short of a c-section. We were blessed with a healthy sweet boy. I won’t upset you with details but after that, we immediately made the decision that if we were to have anymore children, we would look for different options when it came to delivery and prenatal care. Fast forward to August 2020, we found out were pregnant. The more women I spoke to about home birth options, I kept hearing about Well Rounded Mama in Las Vegas. A really good friend of mine was also pregnant and decided to work with Tiffanie. We made an appointment with Tiffanie for a consultation. I immediately knew that I wanted her to help bring our baby earth side. She was welcoming and kind and backed up our questions with evidence, not just, “that’s just the way it is.” Everything about her just felt right. My mom passed away a few years ago and Tiffanie had a very motherly feeling about her. Tiffanie was always available via phone call or text message. She believed that I was capable of giving birth to my baby without any type of pain medication. Although I was nervous and scared at times, I believed her. I also had a doula, Kyla during my journey would helped me tremendously. Every appointment was joyful to go to. Our 4 year old son attended every visit and would even help out. It was so laid back and comforting. No waiting over an hour just to get back to the room and another 20 minutes for the doctor to come in… no peeing in a cup, “just because” or undressing from the waist down to “just take a look at how everything is going down there.” I went in to see Tiffanie for my 38 week appointment on Tuesday, April 20th 2021, which was also the day my mother passed away, four years prior. Tiffanie told me, “Any day now.” Wednesday the 21st, my husband put the finally finishing touches on my birth space in the living room. It was like my body knew now that all of that was completed, I could have my baby. And I was ready, trust me! Late Wednesday night, my husband said he could feel the baby’s head (if you know what I mean!) I say “baby” because we did not know the sex of our baby and wanted to be surprised the day of and whether it was a girl or boy, we were going to name he or she, Deklin.) I told him he was crazy, it wasn’t the baby’s head… I was very wrong. Thursday, April 22nd, I woke up at 3:30am with intense period cramps. (They were all over the place, every 4 minutes, then 2, then 3 and only lasting 20 seconds.) My husband was working in our home office early that day and I told him I wasn’t feeling good. He suggested I go lay down and try to get some rest. I tossed and turned for another hour and couldn’t go back to sleep. I went back into the office and said I felt nauseous and he said the color was gone from my face. Then I started to have diarrhea, no fun. Although, the only position that felt good at the time was sitting on the toilet due to the cramps. I text my doula at 5:54am and explained everything to her. (Most times when you have a doula, they will come out before your midwife on delivery day to help comfort you and work through the surges and when the surges get closer, they will call your midwife.) She told me it sounded like early labor and told me to rest, bathe/ shower. She also suggested a light snack and some water. I told her I was shaky and she suggest some honey.
At 6:18, I ate some strawberries and spoonful of honey and got into the shower. Once in the shower, I started to throw up. The surges were more intense and closer. My husband took over my phone and she asked him to time the surges. For 3, they were 2 minutes apart, lasting 40 seconds. Kyla told my husband to fill the birthing tub and she would be at our house in 20 minutes. She called Tiffanie as well to update her. I did not realize at the time that I was in transition. Tiffanie and Kyla arrived at my house around 7:15/7:20ish. I was in my birthing space, working through the surges (contractions). They were intense, but bearable. WIth my son, I was induced and my water broken at the same time, so my biggest fear was feeling the surges and not being able to push through. Tiffanie reassured me that they would not get more intense, but they would get closer together. As I worked through through the surges, Tiffanie and Kyla worked as a team to get everything ready while my husband filled the birthing tub. During some surges, Tiffanie and Kyla would switch off, rubbing my back and do hip squeezes to ease the pain, which helped so much. About an hour passed and the surges got closer together. I avoided getting in the tub too early because I didn’t want to get too comfortable and slow down the process of labor. The amazing thing about a homebirth with a midwife, you call the shots on where you want to birth and what position. Tiffanie asked me if I wanted her to check my cervix to see how far I was dilated. I thought that was a good idea so I could assess if I wanted to get in the tub yet because I thought I was only at a 4 or a 5, maybe. Tiffanie checked and said I was at an 8! I got in the tub, haha! My husband and I are people of faith and had worship music playing in the background. Before I got in the tub, my husband asked if we could pray over me for a safe delivery. We all cried as we prayed in a circle. I was so grateful for that moment. My husband asked our older adult daughter who lived with us at the time to get our son ready and prepare him if I started to yell. Because he was at every appointment, he knew Tiffanie and Kyla and loved them both. I wanted him to be there if he was comfortable with it to meet his younger sibling. Kyla captured the sweetest photos of my son loving on me and holding my hand.
I was first on my back and I didn’t feel the need to push yet. Tiffanie told me I would know when I needed to push. (When I was in the hospital with my son, they told me when to push and then told me to stop when my son was crowning and then they called the doctor. Um, what??) I turned over onto my knees and rested against the side of the birthing tub. I started to push about 30 minutes later but all I was doing was pooping in the tub. Yes ladies; You will poop and you will be fine. You know it’s love when your husband grabs a scooper and helps out with your midwife. I seriously did not even notice the poop or fluids that were there, I just wanted to meet my baby.
I then started to feel the urge to push and turned over on my back to get better leverage. (I had taken birthing classes at WRM to include Hypnobirthing and learned how to work through the surges using my breath, it was super helpful.) Tiffanie gently showed a better way to position my hands, under my legs and pull back while bearing down. I was a bit of a yeller because the pain was so intense but I felt like it helped me when I pushed and it made me feel like a warrior yelling in battle. My husband and Tiffanie were down by my feet so they could see what was going on. Tiffanie asked my son if he wanted to see the baby and he said, “Sure.” He looked down and said, “I don’t want to see the baby come out of mama’s ‘gina!” Needless to say, he stayed on the side or by my head with his medical gloves on, “ready just in case,” he said.
There came a time after pushing for about 30 minutes where I thought I could not do it anymore. I told my husband that I didn’t have the strength to keep going and that I was scared. Tiffanie looked at me and whispered, “Reach down.” I reached down and felt my sweet baby’s head and hair and knew I was almost there. Tiffanie reassured me that in a couple more pushes, I would meet my baby. I said, “No, now.” I waited for another surge and I pushed as hard as I could. I could feel Deklin’s head was almost out and I kept pushing, not even waiting for another surge. (The surges actually help push your baby down) At 9:58am baby Deklin Rae graced us with her presence. Tiffanie guided Deklin’s head while my husband grabbed Deklin and placed HER on my chest. We had a girl! I had a tiny tear but probably could have avoided that if I waited for another surge. I didn’t even need stitches.
I was already crying but now they were tears of joy. I held my little girl and just sobbed. I was so happy to meet her, I was so proud of myself for delivering her without medical intervention, without pain medication and in the comfort of my own home. I overcame such a big fear and it did wonders for my mental health. I can do anything now! A little bit later, I pushed a couple times and delivered my placenta. Tiffanie showed us my placenta and the sack where my baby was for the last 9 months. It was absolutely beautiful. It looked like the tree of life.
Deklin was taken to a pad next to the tub where Kyla got photos of her with her placenta still attached. Tiffanie helped me out of the tub and walked with me to the shower. It felt so good to be able to stand on my own. With my son, I had an epidural and was not able to stand for almost half a day after I delivered him. Tiffanie helped me to my bed and handed me Deklin to start breastfeeding right away. She also helped me with breastfeeding since it had been a while since I’ve done it. I originally was going to have the tub in my bedroom but it was going to be a tight space so we changed it to the living room and moved the couch. I’m so glad we did that because while my family was in the bed, Tiffanie and Kyla cleaned up the tub and broke it all down. They made breakfast for us all and had us spend time together in bed. About an hour later, they came into our bedroom and took Deklin’s measurements and did her check up. When you deliver in the hospital, unless you request otherwise, once your baby is delivered, they place him or her on your chest for a couple of minutes. Then they take them away across the room under the warm light to do all their checks. I remember crying because I could hear my son screaming and crying when I’m sure he just wanted to be with his mama.
Delivering at home is like a night and day comparison to being in the hospital. I never put anyone down for the decisions they make when delivering, but after doing both, hands down, a homebirth with a midwife if the way to go. And Tiffanie is the best midwife out there if you ask me. My daughter’s birth was everything I could have prayed for and more.
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