My Doula Was Brandi Morales of Barefoot Birth : Part 1 | Tampa Bay Doula

My Doula Was Brandi Morales of Barefoot Birth : Part 1 | Tampa Bay Doula

I'm so glad I had Brandi as my doula. I had a successful HBAC (Home Birth After Cesarean) at 41+6. She was such great support to my whole family. It's been 5 weeks and my 3.5 year old still talks about her. It was such a great familiar experience. If you're lucky enough to have her, you will love her!

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From Preterm to Postdates {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

From Preterm to Postdates {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

This story comes from one incredible mama. In fact, reading her recount and seeing the photos her photographer captured made me ugly cry quite a bit. Knowing her journey to homebirth, and knowing what her family has been through over the years made her triumph that much sweeter. 

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Bringing It Home - VBAC FTW! {Tampa Bay Homebirth}

Bringing It Home - VBAC FTW! {Tampa Bay Homebirth}

I woke up after a peculiar and very real dream the day before we found out we were expecting again.  I had dreamt that I was lying in bed, looking into the side-cared crib, and sleeping peacefully was a sweet baby boy.  The next day I decided to test. Lo’ and behold, we were going to have our second baby!

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Earley Bird Gets The Worm- A Gainesville Birth Story {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

Earley Bird Gets The Worm- A Gainesville Birth Story {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

Sometimes there are people who are just really great at life. Those people are also usually make pregnancy and childbirth look like an effortless stroll in the park. My gorgeous friend, soul sister, and (future) sister midwife Abby is that person. 

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Our (extended) Family : Tampa Bay Birth Network

Our (extended) Family : Tampa Bay Birth Network

We are so excited to share - this is the first in a new blog series we are working on called Our (extended) Family!  We have decided to rid our website of our lackluster "referral" and "resource" lists for something much more thoughtful, interactive, and useful! We will be featuring our favorite local businesses, services, organizations, and people. Our (extended) family that we are constantly referring our families to. We want you to know who they are, what they stand for, and how they can actually help you!

If you know anyone who is featured here- please feel free to leave a comment telling everyone what your experience has been in working with them! We love building this big beautiful community with y'all! 

This first organization to kick off this series is one near and dear to our hearts. The Tampa Bay Birth Network is a local non-profit that aims to connect birth professionals with the families that need them!

 

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BFF babies. {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

BFF babies. {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

 

As many of you know, Barefoot Birth began as a small little wish of myself and my best friend Megan. This past summer, I had the huge honor of attending Megan's first homebirth and welcoming her son earthside. Every birth is so special, but to walk with your best friend on one of their most vulnerable and important days is simply magical. 

These are two best friends who I had the honor of caring for simultaneously during their second pregnancies. Katie and Dana were due just days apart from one another. They became inseparable after meeting when they were teenagers. They put their story like this:

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birth story: a giveaway!

birth story: a giveaway!

​We are so honored when our families share their birth stories here in this blog space, and we are honored to share another very important Birth Story with you that is being told through film.

​Like most birth workers, we love us some Ina May. For those of you who aren't familiar, she's known as the "mother of modern midwifery," a self-taught, straight-talking, gentle soul who isn't afraid to take on the establishment for the good of maternal health and better outcomes for birth.

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home + waterbirth : welcome serenity! {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

home + waterbirth : welcome serenity! {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

This story comes to us from a beautiful client who is the mama to 3 precious girls. This was her 2nd homebirth. I love how calm she was even while cursing like a sailor to bring her baby earthside. I just adore this family and love that they have shared their story with the world! Enjoy! 

"On Nov 8, 2012 I was 41 weeks pregnant with my 3rd daughter Serenity River. I had a real urge to get some shopping done that evening, so after dinner I ran to Wal-Mart while Chris was home with the big girls. On my way to the store I started having back pain for the first time. So when I got back home, I ended up doing a "Bitch post" for the first time, complaining about my back hurting and was just DONE. I was ready for Serenity to come out and meet the world!  It was after we got the girls to bed that I realized this back pain was coming and going, which meant I was in early labor!! I called Gina and Charlie, my midwife and student midwife, to let them know what was going on. This is when Gina told me she was still not feeling well from being in the hospital sick for 5 days and that she couldn't come to my birth, she would have to send her back up Jill with Charlie.  I was really upset that she wasn't going to make it, but felt very comfortable with Charlie; I knew she was going to take great care of us.

 

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Thea Jayne's Birth: Doula-ing the Unexpected {Tampa Bay Doula}

Thea Jayne's Birth: Doula-ing the Unexpected {Tampa Bay Doula}

"This story comes to us from a previous client who, despite several obstacles, had an amazing birth. This story highlights in detail what it is a doula ACTUALLY does. Stereotypes and preconceptions aside, this is how we as doulas help support families to feel confident in themselves. We are not there to do it for them, we CAN'T do it for them....we are there to make sure they are informed, loved, and feel heard every step of the way without our own agenda. Even when things don't go as planned, a doula helps you to find your path and feel confident in the decisions you're making."  

At the time, she was dubbed “Baby Poptart,” and no one but God and my very precocious 3 year old knew she was a girl. We were, of course, already in love with her, but worried a bit too. Not about her health, no, everything seemed on track and we had no reason to expect anything was off - and I’ll save you skipping to the end - nothing was, she was perfectly healthy. No, we were worried because we ended up in the middle of a situation in which we had far less control than we should have we had. Let me start at the beginning, 3 years prior.

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Desmond's Birth Story by Jeanine {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

Desmond's Birth Story by Jeanine {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

Some of you may know me. Maybe I took some maternity pictures for you a while back, or maybe we met last year at the Natural Birth Expo. I imagine, though, that most of you do not know me. My name’s Jeanine and I’ve been the Barefoot Birth staff photographer since Barefoot Birth’s inception. Just as Barefoot Birth has, I’ve come a long, long way since then. I began my career shooting maternity and newborn photos. Soon after that I began shooting weddings. I slowly poured every dime I had into upgrading my equipment and taking classes to better myself as a photographer. It’s truly amazing to look back and see how far I’ve come.

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Denied a VBAC??? {Tampa Bay Doula}

Denied a VBAC??? {Tampa Bay Doula}

More and more we are hearing about women being "denied" a VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean) by their OBs, Midwives, or local hospitals. Here is some information that can help you get the birth you want and deserve

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"It's not your birth." by Charlie Rae Young {Tampa Bay Midwife}

"It's not your birth." by Charlie Rae Young {Tampa Bay Midwife}

This is a phrase I hear quite frequently from other birth professionals. Whether they are childbirth educators, doulas, or midwives. That statement seems to be an automatic reply in the birth community when a women chooses something that we know, on a professional level, is an unhealthy choice. Whether it be birthing in a hospital, allowing interventions, or choosing not to breastfeed. Are we, as a birth community, standing idly by while mother’s make uneducated choices because it is politically correct?      As a doula, I feel it is my duty to educate women on the options they have regarding their birth. With my daughter I desperately needed someone to educate me. I needed someone to say that the hospital is not the place for a healthy woman to give birth. Someone to explain that out of hospital births are just as safe, if not safer, as hospital births. I wish someone would have told me my choices were not the best. I wish someone would have been brutally honest with me. Sure, it was MY BIRTH…but doesn’t every mom want what is best for themselves and their babies? Don’t we all as mothers want to give our children the best start possible?

 

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Have your baby at home! Here is why... {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

Have your baby at home! Here is why... {Tampa Bay Home Birth}

There's a saying that birth is as safe as life gets. Sometimes birth can become dangerous for the baby or, very rarely, for the mother. This is when hospital-based maternity care really shines, and we're able to save mothers and babies who might have died a hundred years ago. Thank goodness that there are skilled surgeons who can come to the rescue when truly necessary.

There's also a saying that when you've got a hammer in your hand, everything looks like a nail. So it is that for hospital-based birth attendants, it is easy to become accustomed to treating every birth as a disaster waiting to happen. Many obstetricians have lost touch with the possibility of normal birth, so much so that even a pitocin induction with an epidural, fetal scalp electrode and vacuum extraction is called a "natural birth". Some hospital staff seem offended by the idea of minimizing interventions, as if preferring not to have a needle the size of a house nail inserted near your spine is the same as declining to have a second piece of Aunt Sally's Fruit Cake. Sadly, some of today’s younger doctors may never even have seen a truly physiological labor and birth—a birth completely without medical intervention.

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