As testimonials come in, we will add them to this page. We are posting birth stories on our new blog, and we invite you to share yours. Let others hear about your birth journey and see pictures of your beautiful family!
Words cannot express my gratitude and love for Betsy, Tisha, and the Family Life Center. They supplied me with the information, support and love I needed to birth my babies my way. From birth classes to prenatal and post-partum care, they were there for me and my family. The unparalleled skills and knowledge these women have to share, made my home-birth experiences safe, peaceful and empowering. What an amazing way to bring children into this world!
Jess, Dave, Sadie and Kamilah
We started meeting with Betsy and Erin when we were 5 months pregnant. They helped us prepare both mentally and physically for a healthy, happy and relaxed pregnancy and natural birth. When we started having contractions in the middle of the night, they were the first ones we called. Betsy and Erin kept in touch while we labored at home. Erin came to support us during early labor and stayed with us until we headed to the hospital. She massaged Lessa’s back and coached her through contractions as they started to get longer and closer together. Betsy met us at the hospital and helped us get settled in, which by that point Lessa was in full labor. We were lucky enough to have both Erin and Betsy with us in the hospital for the birth of our daughter. They brought us whatever we needed and made sure the doctors and nurses stuck to our birth plan while keeping Lessa comfortable and relaxed. Brad was able to focus on holding Lessa’s hand and encouraging her through the natural birth. The hospital staff mostly left us to ourselves because we had doulas to keep the labor moving along. Nava Kayleigh Shear was born at 11:46 am on February 9, 2012 with Betsy and Erin both smiling to welcome her into the world.
Working with Betsy and Erin was one of the best decisions we made for the birth of our son Tennyson. People have asked me- why do you need a doula? My answer is always- I do not know how women have babies without the help of a doula! Betsy and Erin work great as a team and they each brought something very unique to my birth experience. Tennyson was over a week past his estimated due date and while I had to spend my mornings at the hospital having non-stress tests I saw Erin in the afternoons for massage and acupressure treatments- which started my labor.
From the moment my labor started Betsy and Erin were there as part of my support team. Their presence set the atmosphere as calm and comforting. I did not have to worry about any logistics or my birth plan being followed. Everything that I needed was there without even being asked for. They made sure there was no shortage of warm towels as I was in and out of water, Erin along with my husband massaged me the entire night. Betsy helped me in and out of different positions. They made me feel confident in what my body was doing and I know my birth experience was how I wanted it because of their knowledge and experience with laboring women.
For my husband he was so grateful to have them there which allowed him to just be there for me.
The post-partem care started right after Tenny was born with help bonding and breastfeeding. For the months following his birth they made sure that I was eating well, staying well hydrated and taking care of myself. The home visits not only brightened my day but also boosted my confidence as a new mom. Betsy and Erin were always able to be reached for questions during pregnancy and after.
There is not a day that goes by that I do not think about my labor and the wonderful experience that it was thanks to the help of Erin and Betsy.
Having Betsy and Tisha deliver my baby at home was one of the best experiences of my life. Roland was my second baby, and although my first delivery had gone well at the local hospital, the post-delivery hospital stay was not a fond memory. That, coupled with the fact that my 2 year old daughter would not be allowed to visit myself or the baby in the maternity ward, made me look into a home birth. I found Betsy and Tisha via a recommendation from another midwife, and after our first meeting I knew we were on the same page and that I wanted these strong women with me when I brought my baby into this world. My husband was NOT on board at first. He was scared for me, and didn’t understand why I would want to leave the hospital out of it. But as a woman, I knew that my body would take over and all I would need was knowing guidance and a feeling of calm in the room. After a lot of talking, my husband agreed to go along with me since he knew I would have it no other way, and in the end I think he benefited as much from the process as from the delivery.
I was twelve days late. It had been a long pregnancy chasing around a toddler and towards the end I kept hoping he would come just a little early. But, he kept holding on and Betsy and Tisha were there with words of humor and encouragement. They made me feel better about all my natural responses and not once made me feel like there was something wrong. They too were confidant that my body knew best. My husband called Betsy several times with false alarms, and I had not one but two angry crying fits before I could just let it all go. But Roland picked Good Friday, a beautiful sunny morning, to be born. My labor started at 9 in the morning, and when I talked to Betsy on the phone she was relaxed and excited for my birth. They arrived before my contractions got too intense, and we all just smiled and got the nest ready. As soon as my mom arrived, labor took off and while my husband took care of our daughter, the four of us got to work. Betsy and Tisha said all the right things, showed me more comfortable positions, kept a light tone, and ultimately helped me have exactly the birth experience I had wanted. My daughter, fresh from a nap, even got to see her baby brother be born which is still a favorite topic of conversation for her. Afterwords, while I was in the bathroom, my bed was made up with my clean sheets and my pillows and I lay down to get to know my beautiful son. My husband and my daughter climbed into bed with us and together we spent Roland’s first hours. I was given food, drink, and homeopathic medicine to help me heal quickly. Betsy came to our house the next day, Tisha that next week, and one or the other of them for the first month. I didn’t have to leave my home with my brand new baby until I was ready. I still tell people that it was the after care that was really tremendous and so much more involved than the hospital had been. They knew me, so they knew which questions to ask and their vast knowledge of women and birthing was amazing. I recovered in half the time and more fully than I had the first time around. I cannot say enough good things about my home birth, and now that is is over, I miss those ladies! I may have to have another baby just so I get to spend time with them all over again…
Lauren, Gustavo & Dakari
Betsy and Tisha’s birth support was amazing. With their help we achieved our goal of having an HBAC, Home birth after Ceserean section. During my pregnancy-their guidance, knowledge, and patience helped me find the support and the belief in my self to have the birth that I wanted and desired. Their loving hands knew just what I needed as I made my way to becoming a mother for the second time. Whether it was a wet wash cloth on my forehead or coconut water to replenish my body, they anticipated every need. After my baby arrived, their post partum help was exceptional- making extra trips to check on me and my baby. There is nothing better than not having to leave the house when you need a followup appointment to make sure you are healing correctly! My first son loved visiting his midwife friends and he still talks about them, even today! Thank you, Betsy and Tisha, for guiding our baby safely into the world in the comfort and love of our own home, we will forever be in your debt!
Suzanne, Eric, Leif and Aven
For many years people had spoken to me about the Family Life Center being an amazing community resource, and about the profound wisdom shared by the experienced midwives. Naturally, when we found out about our pregnancy, we knew who we wanted to learn from. It had been 9 years since I had given birth to my son, and though I had a natural childbirth with him, there were so many things I had forgotten, never knew or wanted to do differently with this pregnancy. My partner was not my son’s biological father, so this would be his first experience bringing a baby into the world. The childbirth preparation classes we attended at the Family Life Center were empowering for us on a number of levels. First, it brought us together in the process of pregnancy. Once a week, like a beautiful ritual, we would drive downtown to the center, sit down next to each other, sip tea and think only about our birth and baby to come. It allowed us to make more informed choices about the kind of birth we wanted to have, and to think more deeply about the kind of parents we wanted to be. And finally, we were able to connect with other families who were also expecting, many of whom are still in my life.
Several times throughout my pregnancy I received massage from Erin, who is by far one of the best I have ever experienced. She helped me to worked through many ailments like back and hip pain, and to become centered. I also took Pregnancy Yoga classes with Hari Bir from 17 weeks till the day before I gave birth. The stretching and keep-up exercises came in very handy during my labor.
I gave birth to my baby girl at home in water and it was beautiful and everything I dreamed it to be. I am so thankful to this precious resource that is the Family Life Center for playing an important role in making my birthing dreams a reality.
Love, Taina and Gaetano