Stage 4 Cancer Diagnosis Postpartum and Going on to have Another Baby

Undiagnosed Cancer During Pregnancy 

Michelle and Dan were so excited when they found out they were expecting for the first time in 2015. Soon after conceiving, Michelle starting feeling off and was experiencing a lot of pain. She chalked it up to “just one of those weird pregnancy problems”.

After 9 long months Michelle was not in the mindset for trying a natural delivery. Michelle’s water broke on her due date and 16 hours later they welcomed their daughter via a medicated hospital birth in June 2016.

stage 4 cancer pregnant

Stage 4 Cancer Diagnosis 2 Months Postpartum

2 months later Michelle was diagnosed with cancer and then came months of chemotherapy, radiation, and recovery.

Once all cleared from treatment and recovery, Michelle was given the go ahead to start trying for baby #2 by her oncologist in January 2018. She had no expectations and just wanted to go with the flow- and if she got pregnant it would just be a bonus. 9 months of trying later she got the positive pregnancy test she was secretly hoping for. The second time around Michelle wanted to be more present in her pregnancy and delivery. She was in the care of midwives and got to experience an educated and natural hospital childbirth with her second baby.

Michelle Martyniuk Bio

Michelle lives in Ontario Canada with her husband Dan and their 2 children; Amelia 3, and Brody 3 months. Shortly after Amelia was born, Michelle received a phone call from her doctor that would change everything. She was diagnosed with cancer only 2 months after the birth of their daughter. She went from becoming a new mother into the world of being a cancer patient within the span of one phone call. Her postpartum and first go at motherhood was not anything like she could have had imagined. Connect with her via email at


Kelly Mom

Book: Ina May Gaskin: Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth

Aeroflow Breastpumps

Aeroflow Breastpumps has helped thousands of new and expecting moms find the perfect pump for her lifestyle. They offer all major pump brands including Medela, Spectra, Motif, Lansinoh and more. And the best part, they take care of everything – including getting all required paperwork, dealing with your insurance company, and explaining your options in order to get your free pump shipped straight to your door. All you have to do is go to the Aeroflow Breastpumps website and fill out their free and easy Qualify Through Insurance form. Be sure to go to so they will know I sent you!

Uneventful Pregnancy, Marathon Labor, and Hard Postpartum

Birth Story Summary

Megan and her husband, David, began trying for their first baby in the Spring of 2018. In April Megan learned she was pregnant with a due date of early January.  She established care with a local Birth Center and had a fairly uneventful pregnancy. 40 weeks came and went and at 42 weeks, she was induced at the birth center as they would  not be able to keep her in their care past 42 weeks. 30 hours later at 42 weeks 2 days and a transfer to the local hospital, their son, Caden, was born on January 20th at 9 lbs 2 oz and 22in long. 

An uneventful pregnancy, marathon labor, and difficult postpartum opened Megan’s eyes to the various resources within her local birth community and sparked a fire in her to help inform new and expecting moms about what their options truly are when it comes to pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum. 

hospital transfer birth story

Megan Taylor Bio

Megan was born, raised, and currently resides in McKinney, Texas with her husband (David), 7 month old Son (Caden) and 2 dogs (Kali and Piper). Megan works for a local nonprofit as a Grant Writer and teaches dance classes for low income youth within the community. Megan is a retired dancer and enjoys all things fitness related. Current hobbies include yoga and weight lifting. She also loves spending time with her family outdoors (except for those Texas summers), cooking with her husband, and traveling. Connect with her on Facebook- Megan Taylor (Morgan) or Instagram @megantaylor6813.


Megan’s Lactation Consultant

Expecting Better The Birth Partner

Best Birth Prep- Know Your Options Childbirth Course

Kindred Bravely

Today’s episode is brought to you by Kindred Bravely.  From adorable maternity wear to comfortable nursing bras, this mom-owned company has you covered.  See all of their comfy clothing at! I especially love their Simply Sublime nursing tank, their high waisted leggings (for pregnancy AND postpartum), the comfy Jane pajamas, and their high waisted underwear!

Young Living Starter Kit – How to Sign Up!

What’s included in the Young Living Premium Starter Kit?

1. Diffuser

Your starter kit comes with a diffuser and you get to choose which one. I love the desert mist diffuser which can run up to 10 hours and has a candlelight flicker that’s so cozy. The aria diffuser is an upgrade but is so unique, every time someone sees mine they ask about it!

2. 12 Essential Oils

You get the 12 most popular essential oils with your premium starter kit and the value is insane! Lavender, Stress Away, Thieves, Frankincense, Peppermint, Lemon, Valor, Peace & Calming, Digize, Citrus Fresh, Raven, and Panaway. These 12 oils alone will support sleep, focus, digestion, emotions, wellness, muscles, rough days, head tension, relaxation, kids, mama time and the men in your life.

3. Ningxia Samples

NingXia Red supports immune function, liver function, and eye health and is reported to increase energy. I can tell you it’s more than reported to increase mine! I can tell within minutes how different I feel after drinking it! It’s my daily pick-me-up and I’ve cut my afternoon coffee fix since I started drinking NingXia.

4. Thieves Goodies

You’ll get some extra goodies from the Thieves cleaning line including the hand sanitizer which you’ll quickly fall in love with. It smells amazing and doesn’t dry your hands out because it’s made with aloe.

5. Roller Fitments

You’ll get two roller fitment tops so you can turn a couple of your essential oils into roll-ons right away. Favorites for this are usually Valor, Peace + Calming, Stress Away and Thieves.

6. Sample bottles

Premium starter kits come with 10 tiny bottles so you can share your essential oils with a friend or keep a smaller portion in your purse or take when you travel.

7. Product Guide

The Young Living product guide that comes with your premium starter kit is so informative and will help educate you on how to use the essential oils in your kit. It also has details on Young Livings other products like cleaning supplies, personal care products, baby and kids line, and makeup!

8. Essential Oil Magazine

This changes seasonally and is a great place for DIY recipes and inspiration for diving into the world of essential oils!

9. Member Resources

This is my favorite part and why it matters who you sign up with! We have a huge community group dedicated to teaching you and your team about every Young Living oil, supplement, Thieves product, remedy, guideline, success story and life hack! We have classes, books, live facebook hangouts & search functionality that will help you navigate through any questions you might have. I use the search bar in our groups every single day to get questions answered because I’m always learning too and there is SO much knowledge there! It really does matter who you sign up with and the FB groups are a huge perk of joining my team!

How much does the Young Living Starter Kit cost?

The premium starter kit from Young Living is $165 dollars and includes your membership, a diffuser, 12 of the most popular essential oils. The value of all of the products you get with the starter kit is more than $400 so the starter kit is the most cost effective way to get started with Young Living essential oils!

How do I sign up with a young living starter kit?

The Premium Starter Kit is how I recommend everyone get started with Young Living. It’s the most bang for your buck, and how you get the Young Living wholesale membership + access to all of our team resources, groups. etc!! You’ll get a diffuser, 12 of the most popular oils, and some great, useful samples like Ningxia pouches and Thieves goodies! 

I’ll also send you beautiful art print that you’ll want to frame! Then the same day you sign up, I will send your Welcome email, add you to our FB groups, and you’ll have started on this whole wonderful new journey.

young living starter kit

There’s so much to learn and you will love having so many resources at your fingertips, and I’ll be with you every step of the way! Non-toxic cleaning for your home, the best diffuser blends, overall wellness for you and your whole family, etc. We also have team exclusive resources like free ebooks, monthly online classes, mentorship and amazing groups including one specifically for pregnancy, nursing and babies as well as fertility. 

Does it matter who you sign up with?

Definitely! YES. It matters who you sign up with. I get messages everyday from people (who have signed up with someone else) asking to use our team’s resources and if I can help them with their oils. Do your research before you sign up, and pick an enroller and team you WANT to be a part of and that gets you inspired and excited! With our team you get all the resources, all the amazing DIYs, all the support, all the FB groups…all the fun!

I LOVE sharing and educating, and would be honored to do this with you. And one of my favorite things is all of the new friendships started with the women who sign up with me! Come link arms with me and let’s get it going. I’ll be with you every step of the way. And you’ll also be a part of @caseyleighessentials@grapefruitandgold and @goldendropsociety! Best team ever!

What Does it mean to be a Young Living Member?

Becoming a Young Living member does not mean that you have to sell the products, it’s simply how you get access to the Young Living Virtual Office so you can shop with a wholesale discount (24% off). There’s no commitment beyond getting your Premium Starter Kit. It’s like a Costco membership except instead of just getting the card, you’re getting $400 worth of goodies!

You will get a referral link that you can share with friends and every time someone uses your link you’ll earn $50—a great way to pay for your starter kit right away!

How to sign up for your Young Living Starter Kit in 4 steps

1. Click this signup link

Follow these steps: Be sure the member number 15023809 is listed as the enroller and sponsor so you’ll be on our team. Also make sure to check Wholesale Member to earn your 24% off any future orders. (You never ever have to buy or sell anything in the future). Click Continue. 

2. Select the Premium Starter Kit (PSK)

Choose the diffuser you’d like if you’re going the oils route! Desert Mist is my favorite. The candlelight flicker is so good! The Aria is also gorgeous but does cost more.

3. Sign up for essential rewards (if you’d like to)

You can get right on Essential Rewards if you want! This is our monthly autoship program where you get points back, freebies every month etc. To do this you must select your PSK, then click the box below, reading, “Use the selected Premium Starter Kit as my first Essential Rewards order and sign me up for an Essential Rewards subscription.”

If you are going this route, you can then set up your order for next month! To be on Essential Rewards you simply need to spend $50/month on anything you’d like. Some of my favorite things to add right away are the Tranquil and Deep relief roller, Gentle Baby and White Angelica essential oils, any of the Seedlings baby products, and Inner Defense and Multigreens capsules. I recommend doing this even if you plan to cancel the next month because this way you will get a FREE promo product and you’ll get 10 points back (equivalent to $10 back) to spend on something else! 

4. Follow the prompts

Then follow the process all the way through to the end….yay! You did it! Once you’ve completed your order, you will receive a confirmation email and I will be in touch within 24 hours to get you all plugged into our free resources and send you your free gift!

Should you sign up for essential rewards?

  • Enroll at any time!
  • Your monthly order has to be 50PV or above, 50PV usually equals around $50
  • Earn points back on every order! Points can be used like dollars when placing a Quick Order!
  • Every month Young Living releases that months exclusive promos, you can qualify for the freebies by placing your Essential Rewards order or Quick Order, there are ER exclusive promos that you don’t want to miss though!
  • You can cancel at anytime, there is no contract or scary commitment!

Transfer buying!

Okay I get it, if you’re like me, you’re thinking “I don’t have an extra $50/month in my budget right now” and I thought the same thing!! But, I was actually already buying products like toothpaste, deodorant, dish soap, supplements, etc. elsewhere and wasn’t receiving money back, free products or any of the amazing benefits of essential oil infused products that I can get on Essential Rewards. You aren’t spending more money, you are transferring your budget from Target and other places and choosing Essential Rewards instead! It also saves a lot of time to not have to research and wonder if you’re buying things that are good for your health or not!

Again Essential Rewards is totally optional and you can start/stop whenever you want but I definitely recommend at least giving it a try so you can earn points back on every purchase, snag free oils and products to try, and kick the toxins and chemicals from your home!

Get your Premium Starter Kit Now!

Empowering Birth Despite Cascade of Interventions

Birth Story

Sarah got pregnant very quickly with her daughter Savannah- so quickly it ended up being a shock even though it was planned. Sarah had an easy pregnancy physically, but experienced significant challenges and upheaval in her life during her pregnancy, and did not generally enjoy being pregnant. Sarah was terrified of giving birth but still planned an intervention free hospital birth with her midwives and doula.

However at 39 weeks and 6 days, Sarah’s midwives decided she needed to be induced due to high blood pressure. All of Sarah’s plans went out the window, and what followed was a 48 hour wild ride of an induction, including almost every intervention known to man, and 4 hours of pushing, ending in the vaginal birth of her daughter.

Despite the drastic change in plans, Sarah found the entire experience empowering and felt supported and in control.

Sarah suffered significant tearing, a few challenges with breastfeeding, and even now continues to struggle with postpartum anxiety, but overall she had a very positive and supported postpartum experience, for which she gives credit to her husband, family, doula, Taking Cara Babies Newborn Sleep Class, and her placenta pills.

Sarah Deming Bio

Sarah is 32 years old and lives in Baltimore, Maryland with her husband Misha and daughter Savannah, age 13 months. She is a mixed media artist with a small business, Sarah Deming Art, and also works full time as an Administrative Assistant for a local fine art gallery. In her spare time, Sarah loves to read, garden, bake, sew, and enjoy the great outdoors. You can connect with her on Instagram @sarahdemingart or @sarahdem418 or by email:


Taking Cara Babies
Doula Odile Penet
Expecting Better by Emily Oster
Mindful Birthing by Nancy Bardacke
Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth
Know your Options Childbirth Course + Back to Work Breastfeeding Module
The Birth Hour podcast!
Kindred Bravely– hospital gown, nursing pajamas, etc. (coupon code BIRTHHOUR for 20% off)
Aeroflow Breastpumps
Solly Baby and Boba X
Earth Mama perineal spray
My Brest Friend breastfeeding pillow
Cando Kiddo + her Food Before One course
Sarah Beth Yoga
My Baby/Birth Amazon list

College Backer

This episode is sponsored by CollegeBacker. CollegeBacker is the easiest way to save for college with help from family & friends. In just 5 minutes, you can open a tax-advantaged 529 Plan, and then invite family & friends to contribute – even before your child is born!

Sign up at and receive a $10 match when you start saving for your child, or when you send a gift to kickoff someone else’s college fund.

Three Hospital Births, PPD, & Pelvic Floor Therapy

Three Hospital Births

Annie has three children with about 2 years between each. She has had a hospital induction with epidural due to being almost 42 weeks with her first, an unmedicated vaginal hospital birth, and a hospital induction to have a specific midwife with her third. Having a male provider for her second birth brought up some unresolved sexual traumas from her past so she did everything she could to heal and find a supportive care team for her last birth. She discusses suffering postpartum depression after her second and third births and pelvic floor issues. 

Annie Davis Bio

Annie is currently a stay at home mom to three kids, a dog, and two cats. Her husband is in the military and the frequent moves and lack of childcare at her current location mean she’s taking a year off from her profession as a librarian. Previously she’s flown helicopters and worked as a birth doula/babywearing educator. You can find her on Instagram at @librarylane.

hospital birth inductionResources

Doula – A piece of mind doula, llc 

Birth photographer – unscripted imagery

Penny Simkin’s the birth partner 

The know your options class (esp the postpartum plan sheet) 

Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist – NeuMe Physio

Psychologist/PCM who can help with medications and ppd/ppa 

Aeroflow breastpumps – spectra and kiinde system

Local babywearing groups

Local mom fitness groups – Stroller Strong  Moms – Leavenworth 

Sealy Baby

Today’s episode is sponsored by Sealy Baby. Visit them on Instagram to learn more about the brand new Tempur-Pedic® Baby Crib Mattress, as well as a few of America’s favorite baby mattresses from Sealy Baby. 

Neurological Restoration in Pregnancy

Alicia Eastes is a screenwriter/writer, documentary filmmaker, and founding co-President of an emerging chapter of Women in Film and Television International in Austin, Texas. She lives with her husband and 3½ year old daughter in the South Austin community, where she’ll be welcoming their second child in December 2019. After her amazing experience of neurological restoration through her first pregnancy, Alicia is passionate about connecting with other mothers whose pregnancies or birthing experiences somehow healed them from previous trauma – especially head injuries. Please share your stories of restoration through pregnancy!

To reach Alicia, email her at, connect with her on Facebook, or Twitter. To read about Alicia’s restoration through pregnancy and amazing recovery experience, follow her on her Medium blog.

Birth Story

Alicia went into her first birth experience intending an un-medicated hospital birth, with very little self education and preparation, beyond a hospital birthing class, acupressure techniques, and prenatal yoga. Her mother having successfully vaginally delivered four babies un-medicated, she wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but didn’t anticipate the outcome she had. Alicia awoke to her water breaking prematurely at 7am on April 21st, 2019, and after walking as much as possible and waiting for her slow, minor contractions to pick up, she checked into the hospital around 2/3 that afternoon, at the recommendation of her OBGYN Practice. With no mention of the possibility of premature membrane rupture being her condition, she was pressured and rushed by the staff in the hospital to get the baby out within 24 hours, to prevent the risk of infection for her and the baby.

The anxiety was intense, and she wanted to do everything possible to protect her baby, so she took Cytotec ‘augmentation’ at the recommendation of the nurses, around 10pm that evening, when she was dilated 1.5 cm. Her labor went from 0-60 instantly after Cytotec, and there was no mention or warning of the frequency of Cesarean Section after Cytotec, or the risk of uterine rupture. Prince died on April 21, 2016, and when she was offered Fentanyl, she took it, in honor of Prince, but it just made her loopy and did nothing for the pain. She struggled through 5-6 intense hours of labor, when acupressure was absolutely useless, before she begged for an epidural at 7.5 cm, which was incredible relief. She rested before beginning to push at 10am that morning. At noon on Earth Day, April 22, she successfully delivered her baby girl into the world, who came out hungry and ready to nurse, after practicing the last month in utero. It was adorable.


Episode Sponsor: Grove Collaborative

Today’s episode sponsor is Grove Collaborative. Grove makes it easy to discover amazing natural home and personal care products. Grove selects only the best non-toxic products, so you can shop with confidence knowing that everything on their site is good for you, your family, and the planet. Grove’s VIP membership provides our customers with: unlimited free shipping, a free full-sized gift every few months, price match guarantee, and amazing personal service.

Go to this link and when you sign-up you’ll get a $30 value five piece cleaning set! Grove will add some suggested items to your cart to get you started and you can swap those out for whatever you need for your home.

IUD Pregnancy and Hypnobabies Hospital Waterbirth

Megan became pregnant with her first child unexpectedly after 4 years with an IUD. Fortunately, the pregnancy was healthy and viable and continued uneventfully until her son decided to enter the world earlier than she anticipated (37 weeks and 3 days). After being in labor almost a full day without realizing it, Megan made it to the hospital at 10 cm and delivered a healthy baby via waterbirth almost 3 hours later.

hospital waterbirth

Megan Freeland Bio

Megan is a public health pharmacist by trade and a healthcare copywriter by profession. She has a husband, son, and is awaiting the arrival of her daughter.


Hypnobabies Self-Study Course


Motif Medical

Motif Medical designs insurance-eligible products for busy moms. With a focus on innovation and empowerment, Motif’s line of breast pumps and maternity compression garments are sophisticated, yet discreet, and made to support mothers as they navigate new motherhood. Discover why moms are reporting more milk in less time with the Luna breast pump, and see how you can get it covered through insurance at

Elective Cesarean After Healing from Traumatic Vaginal Birth

Birth Healing Therapy & Choosing a Cesarean Birth

Emmalina experienced a traumatic birth with her first baby and did extensive EMDR therapy to recover emotionally; so, when she found out she was pregnant again, she knew she had a chance to make this birth experience a healing one. After much contemplation, she decided to have a scheduled cesarean. 10 days before her cesarean date, she spontaneously went into labour. A few hours later her baby boy was born by a positive and healing cesarean and she moved through her postpartum period with health and no complications.

elective c section

Emmalina Rooney Bio

Emmalina is a Doula and Childbirth Educator. She lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with her husband and two young children. Emmalina is passionate about supporting families through their individual journeys and believes positive birthing experiences are a result of choice and availability of options. To get in touch with Emmalina follow her at @rosebudbirthcollective on Instagram or email her at

Aeroflow Breastpumps

Aeroflow Breastpumps has helped thousands of new and expecting moms find the perfect pump for her lifestyle. They offer all major pump brands including Medela, Spectra, Motif, Lansinoh and more. And the best part, they take care of everything – including getting all required paperwork, dealing with your insurance company, and explaining your options in order to get your free pump shipped straight to your door. All you have to do is go to the Aeroflow Breastpumps website and fill out their free and easy Qualify Through Insurance form. Be sure to go to so they will know I sent you!

Quick Hospital Births & Weeks of Prodromal Labor

Cas’ Birth Story

When Erika found out she was pregnant with her first child, she didn’t even think birthing without pain medication was an option; but, through research and a great friend she decided that was her goal. At 4:45 AM her water broke while she was getting ready for work. With contractions almost immediately after her water breaking, Erika labored at home for a few hours then headed to the hospital. Using the shower and birth ball as her main tools for pain management, she labored for 7 hours. At 11:55 AM, with only a few pushes, Cas was born.

Noori’s Birth Story

At 36 weeks during her second pregnancy, Erika lost her mucus plug and prodromal labor began. Weeks later, at 39w2d, her water broke while she was cooking dinner. This time around she had a goal of not only birthing naturally but also staying at home as long as possible. Erika spent the next few hours laboring at home, surrounded by a few close friends, her husband, and Cas. At approximately 11:30PM she decided it was time to head to the hospital. By the time she got to the hospital at 11:45PM things were moving full force. At 12:06 PM, Noori Elizabeth joined us earth-side with 2 quick pushes.

Erika Thompson Bio

Erika is an Ohio native who lives in Bessemer, Alabama with her husband (Le’Andre’), their two children, Cas (2.5) and Noori (3 months), and their two German shepherds. Erika is an analytical scientist for a polymer production company. She enjoys sports, spending time with family and friends, and DIY projects. Through pregnancy and birth, Erika has found a love for all things birth related, as well as breastfeeding, cloth diapering, and gentle parenting. She has plans to become a doula and support women of color in the Birmingham area. You can contact her via Facebook as Erika Nikole Thompson or Instagram @enikoleee.

College Backer

This episode is sponsored by CollegeBacker. CollegeBacker is the easiest way to save for college with help from family & friends. In just 5 minutes, you can open a tax-advantaged 529 Plan, and then invite family & friends to contribute – even before your child is born!

Sign up at and receive a $10 match when you start saving for your child, or when you send a gift to kickoff someone else’s college fund.

Unmedicated, Empowering Hospital Births & Postpartum Fever

PCOS, Gestational Diabetes, and Two Unmedicated & Empowering Hospital Births

Despite having some struggles to conceive due to PCOS and a gestational diabetes diagnosis, Aleesha had an easy pregnancy with her first child and experienced the unmedicated and empowering hospital birth she had always dreamed of.

Aleesha’s second birth started out slower than her first but once active labor kicked in it was a rush to the hospital where she delivered her nearly 10 pound baby less than 3 hours later in another unmedicated and empowering birth. Three days postpartum Aleesha spiked a fever and had to return to the hospital via an unpleasant ER experience where she found herself having to advocate for herself and her newborn while they tried to determine the source of her fever. 


Aleesha Wiest Bio

Aleesha lives in Seattle, WA with her husband Doug and her children, Carter (21 months) and Luella (newborn). When she was growing up, Aleesha’s mom was a childbirth educator which has led to Aleesha’s lifelong interest in maternal and child health and childbirth. Aleesha works in research administration for the University of Washington and has a side photography hustle where she primarily enjoys taking pictures of women, children, and babies. 

Instagram: @aleeshawiest or @aleeshawiestphotography or on Facebook: Aleesha Wiest 


Books: “Expecting Better” , “Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn” by Penny Simkin 

Following birth photographers other pregnancy/birth pages, support groups like PEPS in Seattle or Facebook groups like The Birth Hour Mama group (join here).

Crane Humidifiers

This episode is sponsored by Crane Humidifiers. Crane’s colorful humidifiers are a nursery necessity to help relieve your baby’s tiny congested nose, which can make feeding and sleeping a struggle for both baby and mom. A happy baby is a healthy baby. Crane is generously offering $10 OFF and free shipping on all of their 1 gallon adorable animal-shaped humidifiers and drop humidifiers with the code BIRTH19 at