Three Hospital Births and Two Home Birth Stories

Michelle Coles is the mother of 5 boys between the ages of 10 and 7 weeks, no twins included. Each birth was a unique experience. All births were vaginal. Her first three were born in hospitals and her last two were born at home with midwives. She was in labor with her first son for around 20 hours and with her last son for only an hour and a half. She received an epidural for her two largest babies, weighing in at 9 and 10 lbs, and went unmedicated for the others. As a result of these varied experiences, she learned a lot about giving birth and is happy to share what she’s learned with others.

Michelle Coles Bio

Michelle Coles is an award-winning young adult novelist, civil rights attorney, and public speaker. Her goal in writing is to empower young people by educating them about history and giving them the tools to shape their destiny. Her debut novel, Black Was the Ink, a young adult historical fiction about the Reconstruction Era, was published in 2021. Black Was the Ink received numerous awards including the 2022 Grateful American Book Prize, a 2022 Skipping Stone Award, a 2023 In the Margins Award, and the 2019 New Visions Award Honor.

Connect with Michelle via:



Motif Medical

This episode was sponsored by Motif Medical. Motif 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, learn about the new hands free, Aura pump, and see how you can get pumps covered through insurance at

2 Hospital Birth Stories with 1 NICU Stay and 1 Induction

Sidrah became pregnant with her daughter in 2018, after trying to conceive for 10 months. Her daughter was born at 39 weeks, but due to fluid remaining in her lungs, she had to be taken to the NICU where she stayed for 6 days to ensure there was no risk of infection or pneumonia. Because of this difficult start, Sidrah experienced challenges with breastfeeding and struggled with low milk supply.

Despite becoming pregnant unexpectedly just 7 months after giving birth, Sidrah was determined to have a successful breastfeeding journey with her son. However, he was born a little early at 37.5 weeks and didn’t develop the sucking reflex, which made breastfeeding a challenge. Compounding the issue was the pandemic, which made it difficult to find a lactation consultant who offered on-site visits. Sidrah eventually found a consultant who could meet with her in person, but had to do her own research to determine the correct flange size. Despite these challenges, she was ultimately successful in breastfeeding her son for a whole year.

Sidrah Tahir Bio

Sidrah resides in Austin, TX along with her husband of 6 years and their two children. Her daughter Zarina who is almost 4, and her son Zayden who is 2. Contact info: Instagram – @Sidrah515


  • IG – Badassmotherbirther
  • Legendairymilk
  • Labor.nurse.mama

SNP Therapeutics

Today’s episode is sponsored by SNP Therapeutics, makers of the Genate Test. Based on over 16 million dollars in NIH grants, and more than 30 years of nutrition and genetic research, SNP Therapeutics is leading the charge in the field of prenatal, precision-nutrition genetic testing.

SNP Therapeutics is committed to providing accurate and usable information to help mothers provide the best possible nutrition to their babies through The Genate Test: a prenatal, precision-nutrition, genetic test that offers personalized dietary adjustments and supplement recommendations based on your DNA. 

You can rest easy knowing that your prenatal nutrition has been optimized by tailoring it to your genetic code. Find peace of mind about your prenatal nutrition with the Genate Test by SNP Therapeutics. Learn more at and Use code BIRTHHOUR15 for 15% off your order.

Unmedicated 2nd Birth Story with Hospital Midwives in Houston, TX

After being induced at almost 42 weeks with her first son, Felicia was really hoping to go into labor naturally this time around. She chose a midwifery practice instead of an OB in order to be more aligned with her birth plan. After 2 days of inconsistent contractions, she got her wish when her water broke on the bedroom floor on a Monday morning. Felicia shared her first birth in 2019 which can be accessed via our archives.

Felicia Bullock Bio

Felicia is a 35 year old procurement professional. Born and raised in Chicago but currently living in Houston, TX. She lives with her husband of almost 8 years Bart, sons Elijah and Jonah, and French bulldog Hendrix. In her spare time she loves trying new restaurants, date nights with her husband, a good crime show binge, and staying politically updated. You can connect with her on Instagram at @SakkiBomb.


  • Pelvic Floor PT
  • Birth related Podcasts (Birthing Instincts, Birthful, The Birth Hour)


Today’s episode is sponsored by Needed. Needed is the leading women’s health supplement brand recommended by nutritionally-trained practitioners. While most perinatal supplements include the bare minimum of the nutrients needed during pregnancy, Needed’s products are based on the latest clinical research and in-practice experience of nearly 4000 practitioners. Needed has all your needs covered, from your prenatal vitamin to pregnancy-specific Pre/ and Probiotics, to egg quality support, sleep, stress, immune and hydration support, as well as your protein needs for blood sugar balance and postpartum healing. Needed’s Complete Plan delivers unparalleled nourishment for every phase — whether you’re trying to conceive, pregnant, or postpartum! Instead of having to pair 6 different products together to meet your needs, I love that Needed has simplified things by bundling together four core products you need, in an easy and flexible monthly plan. Save 20% off your first order of Needed’s Complete Plan or any of their other perinatal nutrition products at with code BIRTHHOUR.

Tubby Todd Bath Co.

Today’s episode was sponsored by Tubby Todd Bath Co. Created with sensitive skin in mind, Tubby Todd’s line of bodycare basics are gentle, effective and fun for the whole family. You might have heard of their eczema miracle worker All Over Ointment (fondly referred to as AOO), but this family-owned brand offers a full line of sensitive skincare solutions that you’ll love to reach for every single day. Start with The Regulars or Baby Bundle to get your little one set up with their very first skincare routine. Join the TT fam and get 15% off your first purchase with code BIRTHHOUR15 at

Our Black Family Shares Two Healthy Hospital Births Shared by Tracy Wells

The Wells family wanted to share their birth experiences as an African American family with the intention of contributing BIPOC voices to this birthing community. We are honored they chose us. We would like to invite and welcome families to share their individual stories which collectively, are so important in helping bring about systemic change.

Tracy’s first pregnancy was pretty breezy, no complications. Having suffered an ischemic stroke at age 29 due to birth control, Nuvaring, which led to permanent partial vision loss, she was grossly aware of the cost of not being listened to by doctors. Given this obvious trauma, Tracy went carefully into pregnancy, knowing there could be risks with increased hormones in her body and having to be in the care of doctors and hospitals again. Nonetheless, her first pregnancy was healthy and full term. She went to 41weeks and 1 day and was then induced, due to creeping close to Christmas and wanting to ensure her doctor would be present. Her daughter was born healthy at 8lbs, 8oz, vaginally and without an epidural. The whole experience was much quicker than she’d anticipated, having had false labor the month before- only to be sent home. It was clear she’d labored through contractions the whole month in between. She checked into the hospital at midnight and gave birth at 4:30am. Tracy and Bradford are incredibly grateful to have had the entire first year of their daughter’s life uninterrupted by Covid, traveling often to their family and friends scattered across the country.

When she and her husband were considering having a second, they wanted a bit more time. They sought the opinion of the fertility experts at Kindbody who told Tracy unequivocally, she was not a good candidate for egg freezing due to low egg count, but should try to get pregnant immediately without them. They told her to give it 3 months and come back if she wasn’t pregnant, needless to say- she didn’t return. In May of 2022 the couple had planned to have their first getaway without their oldest and had to reschedule at the last minute due to their planned caretaker getting Covid. They rebooked for June and traveled, cautiously, to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. They had an amazing time, all the while trying for a baby, returned home and promptly fell sick with covid. The plague started with her husband, then Tracy and finally their daughter. Upon confirming her bout with Covid, Tracy also noticed she was late and took a pregnancy test- which was also positive. She was sick for no less than 2 weeks! In addition, this time around she dealt with morning sickness, never-ending heartburn, vomiting and undercarriage pain requiring physical therapy throughout the pregnancy. Despite that, it was a joyful time as it was quite a baby boom in her family, a close cousin delivering a girl the month before her and her sister having given birth to a baby boy just 5 months before.

Despite knowing Black maternal health is overall abysmal in a hospital setting in the U.S. and due to her previous experience being ignored by doctors while having a stroke, Tracy decided on another hospital birth. She had a positive experience the first time and to minimize the amount of change and try to control what she could, in hopes of replicating another healthy pregnancy and birth, she kept everything the same. Same doctor, same hospital, same birth plan. And luckily, the birth worked out fairly close to her plan. She went into spontaneous labor at 39 and 3 days, birthed as long as she could at home, checked into the hospital at 8:45pm and her son was born at 11:55pm. With her mind set and lots of planning, she was able to have another unmedicated birth, in the hands of those she trusted. 

Tracy Wells Bio

Tracy and her husband Bradford live in Los Angeles with their 4 year old daughter, Pearl and 6 week old son, Clay. Tracy is in sales and plans events on the side. Cuddling while reading with her kids, live music, being outdoors, baking and traveling keep her happy. You can connect with Tracy by leaving a comment here.


Kindred Bravely

This 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). Listen to this episode for a special coupon code and to hear about my new favorites in their summer line of clothing and loungewear!

Second Homebirth, Two Babies Under Two

Past guest, Von Lane, is back with her funny storytelling style to share her second homebirth birth story! Listen to her past episodes (698 and 699) to hear her first birth story.

Von Lane Bio

Von is from Toledo Ohio and moved to Houston in 2018 just one year after after being married to her husband, Charles. Charles is from Seattle and a navy veteran. They have a daughter, two dogs Astro the pit bull & Yogi the English bulldog, and are expecting their second baby. Connect with her on IG @Von__Lane, via TikTok: von__lane or listen to her podcast – Anchored Podcast.


von lane pregnancy

Motif Medical

This episode was sponsored by Motif Medical. Motif 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

Fast, Empowered, Pandemic Homebirth After Cross Country Move During Pregnancy

Akua’s first pregnancy in 2020, evolved alongside the emerging-pandemic and was marked by a cross-country move, a 6 hour drive for an ultrasound, switching birth teams and finding creative ways to cultivate trust in herself and the process of birth. 

Amidst a backdrop of demoralizing black maternal health statistics, Akua devoted her pregnancy to immersing herself in birth literature, workshops, childbirth education, podcasts, journaling and speaking with friends who had given birth. She interviewed over a dozen doulas and sought out affirming midwifery care – which would allow space for all of her questions, curiosities and concerns. 

At the end of a very long pregnancy, an unassuming yoga session would spark the start of a very fast first labor. Guided by metaphor and visualizations, Akua labored mainly alone in the dark; listening to playlists, a self-recorded affirmation track and holding on to a bathroom radiator for dear life. After their hot water heater spontaneously died, her partner spent most of active labor frantically heating-up water on the stove in hopes of filling the birth tub. Akua birthed her baby standing up in the living room; roaring from the depths of her belly and held by the loving support of her doula, partner and midwife.

Postpartum involved watching the entire Sopranos series, pelvic floor therapy, a baby who would never take a bottle and a temporary bout of depression that dissipated as the world slowly opened back up to new beginnings. 

Akua Carson Bio 

Akua is an artist, Full Spectrum Doula and Childbirth Educator. 

She founded ‘Caring In Color’ with the intention of providing creative, compassionate and affirming support to people navigating pregnancy, birth, postpartum and loss. Akua is also a part-time facilitator at the Urban Perinatal Education Center  (UPEC) founded by Quatia Osorio in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.  The center is a safe space for Black, Indigenous and people of color to source education and build community throughout their perinatal health journeys.

Outside of birth work, Akua enjoys bumping music around the home, reading, singing and recording, great wine, ceramics and finding ways to entertain the tornado that is her toddler . She might get into gardening this year. She lives in Providence, Rhode Island with her partner and their child near the ocean. Connect with her via or on Instagram:


Oath Care

This episode is sponsored by Oath Care – a welcoming community to connect with fellow moms, find judgement-free support, and get personalized expert advice from pediatricians, marriage and family therapists, lactation and sleep consultants, pelvic floor therapists and more. Download the free to use Oath Care app from or in the App Store or Google Play.

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