After a bout with infertility and IVF, Julie was thrilled and terrified to be pregnant with twins! But after an uneventful pregnancy, and making it to 38 weeks, Julie experienced the thing all twin moms dread: the “double whammy” birth.
Julie Burt Nichols
Julie is Twiniversity’s “Wizard Behind the Curtain,” serving as Editor-in-Chief of Twiniversity.com, Account Manager, and Instructor for Chicago Twiniversity classes. Julie is a full-time working mother to twin boys, born on Halloween. She loves serving as a resource and support for new parents, soon-to-be parents, and we-want-desperately-to-be parents. Julie is proud to be a certified child passenger safety technician, and the Twiniversity Resident Songstress/Jingle Writer.
Parent-to-Parent Mentorship Program
What To Do When You’re Having Two
This episode was sponsored by Babylist. Babylist believes that you should be able to get exactly what you need for your unique and growing family. That’s why their baby registry lets you add any item from any store. Even add cool services and favors like prenatal yoga, doula support, home-cooked meals or dog walking. Start your registry today to be eligible for a free Hello Baby Box of goodies for baby worth up to $190 while boxes last.
The Journey of A Gestational Carrier Birth with Sarah Tuttle & Kara Ford
Today’s birth story podcast episode features Sarah Tuttle and her gestational carrier, turned great friend, Kara Ford. I had the chance to interview both of them and hear the story of how they found one another, how they made the decision to have Kara carry Sarah’s babies and the birth of Sarah and her husband, Chris’ sweet twin girls.
Sarah Tuttle Bio
After multiple methods and attempts at getting pregnant the best diagnosis doctors could give Sarah was “unexplained infertility.” While her infertility journey has been incredibly frustrating, especially being unexplained, Sarah never gave up her dream of becoming a mom. And after almost 9 years of infertility, a miracle happened; her and her husband were blessed with two beautiful twin baby girls through the amazing gift of a gestational carrier. Because of Kara (Sarah’s gestational carrier), Sarah’s dream of becoming a mom finally came true, and she will forever be grateful for this incredible gift.
The girls are now almost 8 months old and are so much fun! They keep Sarah very busy, not to mention her part time job. Sarah has worked for Dressing Your Truth for almost 10 years where she is a wardrobe stylist, and passionate teacher, helping women rediscover and embrace their true beauty. You can read more about Sarah’s journey to and through motherhood on her blog or on Instagram.
Kara Ford’s Bio
Kara Ford decided to become a gestational carrier because she was so blessed to be able to have children of her own and the love she has for her own children is so immense. She wanted that for everyone! She knew that there were women who were not able to carry a child for whatever reason and had so much compassion for them and wanted to be able to help them in any way she could. Kara felt that carrying a baby for someone was a way that she could show her love for those who have struggled. She met Sarah and knew immediately that she was somebody that was so deserving of being a mother and knew that she was to be the vessel that helped get her little twin girls here. She knows that she and Sarah will forever have a sacred bond.
This episode is sponsored by Babylist. Babylist believes that you should be able to get exactly what you need for your unique and growing family. That’s why their baby registry lets you add any item from any store. Even add cool services and favors like prenatal yoga, doula support, home-cooked meals or dog walking. Start your registry today to be eligible for a free Hello Baby Box of goodies for baby worth up to $190 while boxes last. At the end of this episode I’ll be talking to Amanda, about her experience using Babylist.
After a healthy pregnancy with twins, Amy and her husband were planning another home birth. Their first two children were born at home. Amy and her midwives were hoping to make it to 37 weeks. When labor began at 36 weeks, they all decided that giving birth in the hospital would be the smartest and safest choice. The midwives wanted to be confident that the babies were fully developed and 37 weeks was the goal.
Amy, her husband and two midwives (who came to the hospital to offer labor support) were met with resistance since Baby B was breech. The doctor wanted to take Amy immediately to the OR for a C-section. Baby A was head down, both babies heart rates were strong and there were no signs of distress, so Amy refused the cesarean. She said “I trust in my body, and I trust in my babies. We deserve a chance to labor.”
This statement would be one that she repeated each time a fear tactic was thrown at her. She was bullied by the doctors and administrative staff but never gave up hope on her body or her babies. She simply wanted the opportunity to labor and birth Baby A vaginally. After that, she was hopeful Baby B would find the position he needed.
Even in the face of fear, doubt and control from the doctors, Amy remained confident in her voice. She filled her birth story with trust and surrender.
The twins had their own unique journeys into the world. While it wasn’t the homebirth Amy had planned on, she has found acceptance for the story they wrote together. From their pregnancy, to birth, to mothering twins, the boys have taught her the power of patience, surrender and trust.
Amy Griffith Bio
Amy Griffith is a mom of 4, including twins. She transitioned from a career as a Broadway dancer and Radio City Rockette, to the world of yoga as an instructor specializing in prenatal and postnatal yoga. Amy’s pregnancy and birth with her son inspired her to film her own prenatal yoga dvd’s with her daughter, her second child. Her pregnancy and birth with the twins reinforced the importance of slowing down, trusting her body and surrendering to their path. Amy says she is mindfully-stumbling through motherhood as she juggles the demands of 4 children. A focus on the good in the present moment is how she handles the challenges that arise in motherhood. More information on Amy, her pre/postnatal dvd’s and social media links can be found at ExercisingBalance.com.
When you’re expecting twins, triplets or quads By Dr. Barbara Luke
Earth Mama Organics
This episode was sponsored by Expectful which is a digital platform that makes meditation easy for expectant and new moms. Each one of their guided meditations has been created to support you throughout your pregnancy and motherhood journey.
Their mission is to give babies the best start in life, and that begins with you. If you’re pregnant or a new mom, go to expectful.com and sign up for their 30 day free meditation trial. It may just change your life.
Natalie Diaz Bio
Natalie is the Pied Piper of twin families around the globe. Founding Twiniversity — the world’s leading support network for multiple birth families — in 2009, she’s become the global influencer for this small niche community. Reaching over a million families a week through Twiniversity’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube channels, moms and dads of twins flock to Twiniversity to find resources, ask questions, explore new products, and find community and support from other twin parents. Natalie is a true connector, bringing parents from all walks of life together, breaking past cultural differences, to share in the highs and lows of parenting twins. Natalie’s book, “What To Do When You’re Having Two” is a global bestseller in Twins & Multiples Parenting.
Parent-to-Parent Mentorship Program
What To Do When You’re Having Two
This episode is sponsored by Solly Baby, the makers of Solly Baby wrap carriers, Solly swaddles and Solly Dolly wraps. At Solly Baby, closeness is what matters. The power of touch, the strength in being together, and that the most enduring relationships are not only in love but in experiencing life together. Solly Baby is generously offering $5 off your order with the code BIRTHHOUR at www.sollybaby.com.
Twin to Twin Transfusion Loss, Miscarriage and Rainbow Babies
Ashley shares the story of the loss of her twins, followed by a miscarriage, and then the birth of her rainbow babies. Her daughter Cates was born early and spent 33 days in the NICU; and, her son Rett and daughter Liza were both born full-term by scheduled cesarean. She shares how her faith affected the way she processed her losses, and how it all impacted her subsequent pregnancies and births.
Ashley Gilbreath Bio
Ashley Gilbreath is the founder of Ashley Gilbreath Interior Design and Parish Shoppe in Montgomery, AL. In addition to running her business and being featured in the HGTV show, Sweet Home Renovation, Ashley juggles life with three littles and a supportive husband. Connect with her on Instagram or firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to be a supportive friend after pregnancy loss
Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back
This episode is sponsored by Stitch Fix, a personal styling service for men & women that sends clothing to your door. Stitch Fix is dedicated to styling women through all phase of their lives. If you’re expecting a baby – they’ve got you covered with their maternity styling option. From the first trimester to your post-baby bump, Stitch Fix Stylists will help you look and feel your best every step of the way. They have free shipping both ways and no subscription needed. Go to Stitchfix.com to get started!
Giving Birth to Twins at Home
Rebekah’s third pregnancy (twins!) came as a surprise to her and her husband, Adam; but, it was welcomed, though with some hesitation. The hesitation initially being that they lived in a very small home built by Rebekah’s grandfather. Their hesitation was eased quickly with some 2×4’s and shiplap that split their bedroom in half to create a third bedroom. Prior to the twins’ birth, Rebekah gave birth to her second child, her daughter, at the local midwife-birthing center, and she desired to replicate that experience by using the birthing center and water to relieve her labor pains, so she could again enjoy a natural birth where she felt safe and respected. So Rebekah established care with the same local midwives and attended her regular routine appointments. During those appointments, one heart beat was heard and Rebekah wasn’t measuring unusually large, so there weren’t any signs of twins, though she joked about it at each appointment.
On Christmas eve at 18 weeks, Rebekah, her husband, and their 2 kids went to her anatomy ultra sound. The moment the ultrasound tech placed the wand on her belly she immediately explained that they were her second set of surprise twins today. Rebekah was speechless, Adam attempted to hold back his nausea from the shock. They weren’t aware of any twins in their family and felt this was a joke and completely impossible. Through the ultrasound they found they were expecting fraternal boy girl twins!
Rebekah struggled with the thought of twins. Questions raced through her mind: How was she going to breast feed twins? Could she still have a natural birth-center birth? And could she handle four kids??? She was beyond upset about risking out of the local midwife birthing center and felt abandoned with trying to find new and natural care.
In an attempt to still have an epidural-free birth, she found another local midwife center affiliated with a very large hospital. She did not agree with the ethics of that hospital but felt that this midwife group was her only chance at a natural birth. She assumed “midwife” meant they would be a good fit for her holistic approach to her care and birth. Boy was she wrong. Every appointment she wore her imaginary brass knuckles and fought for freedom of birthing position, birth in a birthing suite not an OR, no epidural or IV fluids, and most importantly, to keep the intimate atmosphere without an audience of students, nurses, and doctors. But every time she brought it up she was knocked back down with their responses. She felt disrespected, belittled, and unsafe. She felt that God was calling her to look into home birth, and that particular midwife group scared her and Adam enough to make this decision very difficult. After a couple appointments and verbal beatings from the midwifes group, she finally made the decision to look hard into home birthing.
At 27 weeks, Rebekah established care with home birth midwives and the weight of the world was taken off her shoulders. She felt respected, celebrated and safe. After describing her anxiety and stress of the pregnancy fueled by the hospital affiliated midwives, one of the midwifes knocked her out of her pity-party and reminded her of how blessed she was to be carrying two healthy babies. From that point on she could actually breath and began enjoying her pregnancy. Her birth team was assembled and thanks to a generous baby shower thrown by her friends, the funds were not a burden!
Labor came on at 36 weeks and 6 days. During her 12 hour labor, Rebekah and Adam took advantage of birthing at home and together baked a birthday cake for the twins between contractions. Their home was filled with songs of praise and worship from Rebekah and her birth team. She birthed both babies in a birthing pool, in the house that her grandfather built, in the very room that the twins lay their heads every night.
Rebekah Tarbert Bio
Rebekah is the coordinator of chaos in her south-of-Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania home. She and her husband, along with 4 children and two dogs live together in her late grandfathers home. Before she became a mom, she received her Masters Degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology and worked at a local hospital as an exercise specialist in the cardiac rehab unit. Rebekah has taken that passion for exercise, holistic health and faith, and transformed it into something she is able to do in conjunction with being a stay-at-home mom. She uses her passion to fuel others through her personal training and fitness ministry. In her spare time, if she gets any, she enjoys weight training, attending bible studies, and being creative. You can read her entire birth story on her Facebook page under the name: Rebekah Ashley and also on Instagram: @rebekahashley
Ina May Gaskin Books
Birthing from Within
Tea to Prepare for Postpartum
Find supportive like-minded Facebook groups.
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