Doctor Advocates for Patient in Hospital Birth and Multicystic Dysplastic Kidney (MCDK) Diagnosis

Kellie’s first labor lasted 32.5 hours from labor to birth. She had a hospital birth with an epidural and had an amazing and supportive doctor who advocated for her. Baby #2 was a planned induction because baby was initially diagnosed with severe Hydronephrosis. That diagnosis was changed to Multicystic Dysplastic Kidney (MCDK) after birth. She discusses her birth and postpartum with both babies.

Kellie Brandt birth story

Kellie Brandt Bio

Kellie is married to her husband Austin. They’ve been married for 3 years and together for 9. They have a 19 month old and a 3 month old! Connect with her on Instagram @Kellieannfreels or kelliefreels@gmail.com.

Resources

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 motifmedical.com/birthhour

Postpartum Depression and Anxiety During Covid-19 Pandemic

Clarice has had two very different births – one was a long hospital induction and one was a fast homebirth. You can listen to her first birth story on Episode 345, and on this episode she will talk about her postpartum experience following that birth as well as her second birth and postpartum. Both times she experienced postpartum mood disorders (depression and anxiety) in some pretty significant ways. She has learned many lessons about how to deal with the mood disorders and what she can do to keep things from getting out of hand in the future.

tandem babywearing

Clarice Amorim Freitas Bio

Clarice is a mom of two young boys, she is originally from Brazil but now lives in Alaska with her kids and her husband. She is currently staying at home but she dreams of being a doula once her littles are a bit older – with the goal of helping other families achieve their ideal birth and postpartum experiences. In the meantime, she is enjoying traveling and exploring nature with her boys. You can follow their adventures on Instagram under the handle @onebarefamily. You can also find out more about her at https://wanderingrootsdoula.com/

Resources

Ergobaby

This episode is sponsored by Ergobaby. Founded in 2003, Ergobaby has pioneered the gold standard for comfortable, ergonomic soft structured carriers. Their commitment to providing parents with the foundation to thrive has launched the company into creating a broad range of award-winning products that fit into families’ daily lives seamlessly, comfortably, and safely – where function and quality are not compromised. In 2020, they launched Everlove by Ergobaby, a first of its kind baby carrier buy back and resale program, a sustainability effort to support families and the planet. Check out Ergobaby’s Embrace in Soft Air Mesh that we discussed on the podcast!

Postpartum Anxiety, Grief, and Virtual Therapy

Elizabeth experienced a pregnancy that was relatively physically easy as well as a surprisingly almost painless, epidural-free birth. What was tough to handle were the emotional difficulties that she was facing. Between the death of her brother prior to getting pregnant, the loss of her nephew in the first trimester, and a third trimester flag for a potential severe fetal genetic disorder with her baby, grief and loss had a major impact on her well-being. During her postpartum recovery, the major focus was on mental health. Elizabeth sought supportive therapies and resources for not only postpartum anxiety but also death anxiety as the result of PTSD from her losses. 

When her son was almost three-months-old, Elizabeth was managing things well and preparing for her upcoming transition back to work. But the COVID-19 pandemic caused everything to come to a halt. A major coping mechanism for her anxiety involved social interactions, and with those no longer available, she had to find new methods. In the midst of navigating anxiety, Elizabeth also balanced ongoing genetic testing, extended breastfeeding, working from home, and becoming a new parent in a post-pandemic world. 

Elizabeth Booker Houston, JD, MPH Bio

Elizabeth is a Government Information Specialist at FDA in the Washington, DC Metro Area. She lives with her husband, Billy, and their two-year-old son, Booker. Along with her career in public health law, Elizabeth is also a comedian. She can be found on Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook @bookersquared and on Twitter @bookersquared1. 

Resources

Emergency Cesareans and Navigating Breastfeeding and NICU Stay

Despite feeling prepared, Amanda’s first birth experience ended in a cesarean birth when her baby started struggling with heart decelerations. Before the doctor even made the cut, she already knew she wanted a VBAC experience with her next birth. The postpartum experience with her first was challenging, but things settled after a few months.

When Amanda became pregnant over a year later, she did everything she could to prepare for a VBAC. She went into labor at 41 weeks and had an amazing labor but experienced a complete uterine rupture after one hour of pushing. She was rushed into emergency surgery. Once delivered, her baby was rushed to the NICU and remained there for 9 days. While recovering in the hospital Amanda experienced chest pain, and a CT scan revealed a pulmonary embolism. Postpartum had other challenges related to low breastmilk supply and she had a physically and emotionally painful recovery. 

ruptured-uterus-birth-story

Amanda Jamison Bio

Amanda lives near Denver, CO with her husband Jonathan and two kids: Rowan (2.5 years old) and Aria (8 months). She can be found on Instagram at @amanda_moves or on Facebook under Amanda Jamison. 

Resources

Ergobaby

Today’s episode is sponsored by Ergobaby. Founded in 2003, Ergobaby has pioneered the gold standard for comfortable, ergonomic soft structured carriers. Their commitment to providing parents with the foundation to thrive has launched the company into creating a broad range of award-winning products that fit into families’ daily lives seamlessly, comfortably, and safely – where function and quality are not compromised. In 2020, they launched Everlove by Ergobaby, a first of its kind baby carrier buy back and resale program, a sustainability effort to support families and the planet. Check out Ergobaby’s Embrace in Soft Air Mesh that we discussed on the podcast!

Managing Anxiety and Depression, Using SNS Nursing System, and Finding Support

Sophie Croen McMinimee Bio

Sophie is a lifelong planner, managing nonprofit events for a living. When it came to birthing and then raising her now 2.5 year old Claire, Sophie faced many unknowns, causing her a lot of anxiety. Prodromal labor and sleepless nights didn’t set Sophie up for success in her early postpartum days. The pandemic, nursing challenges, and postpartum depression ultimately made for a tough first eight months of bonding with Claire. After various means of support, Sophie’s mental health improved, along with her confidence as a mom and her bond with Claire. Connect with Sophie on Instagram @sophchroem.

sns nursing system

Ergobaby

Today’s episode is sponsored by Ergobaby. Founded in 2003, Ergobaby has pioneered the gold standard for comfortable, ergonomic soft structured carriers. Their commitment to providing parents with the foundation to thrive has launched the company into creating a broad range of award-winning products that fit into families’ daily lives seamlessly, comfortably, and safely – where function and quality are not compromised. In 2020, they launched Everlove by Ergobaby, a first of its kind baby carrier buy back and resale program, a sustainability effort to support families and the planet. Check out Ergobaby’s Embrace in Soft Air Mesh that we discussed on the podcast!

Unmedicated Hospital Birth with Severe Prenatal and Postpartum Anxiety and OCD During Covid Lockdown

Nicole and her husband,  Kyle,  were excited to try to start a family in 2019. Nicole had a prior medical history of anxiety and had been taking the same anti-anxiety medication for the past ten years without any issue. Prior to trying to conceive, Nicole made a family planning appointment with her OB in order to check the medication’s safety or to be prescribed an alternative that was safe to conceive on. When told by her OB that nothing was 100% safe and she should consider weaning off her medication, Nicole did so. Ultimately, this sent her into an emotional tailspin.

Upon receiving that positive pregnancy test, Nicole and Kyle were elated. Heightened anxiety after weaning off her medication coupled with first trimester hormones led Nicole to seek out a second opinion in regards to starting medication. To her relief, she found a OB who prescribed her a medication that had been used in pregnancy and had an overall good prognosis. Around 12 weeks, Nicole switched to midwifery care and focused on learning how to cope with labor pain and fulfill her dream of having a natural vaginal birth. Nicole went into labor at 40 weeks and one day and delivered Claire in what she describes as  “the perfect natural birth” that she was able to achieve with the help and support of both her husband and her midwife.

Nicole’s postpartum was extremely difficult as she was diagnosed with postpartum anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder during the height of Covid. She experienced breast-feeding issues with Claire which led her to exclusively pump. She ended up not returning to work after her maternity leave ended as she continued to battle her diagnosis during a time when the world had shut down. It was with the help of a psychiatrist and the proper medication dosage that Nicole started to feel somewhat normal. The overall anxiousness did not completely subside until she had ended breastfeeding when Claire was 11 months old.

After Claire’s first birthday, Kyle and Nicole decided to try to conceive again and to their surprise it happened quite quickly. The couple had reservations considering Nicole’s last pregnancy and postpartum but her psychiatrist assured them that relapse was highly unlikely as long as Nicole remained at her current medication dosage. Nicole’s pregnancy was uneventful until she contracted Covid at 24 weeks pregnant. Thankfully, her symptoms were mild but she contemplates that this may have been the reason she went into preterm labor at 36 weeks 6 days as Covid has been linked to preterm labor. After 7 hours of active labor and dilating to 6 cm, labor ended abruptly after an IV fluid bolus. Charlotte was born two weeks later after a four hour labor which almost ended in a car delivery.

ppa ocd

Nicole’s second postpartum was nothing short of redemption. She felt that she was able to enjoy her newborn daughter in ways she never was able to with her first. The only anxiety she felt was what she described as “normal for a new mom of two”. While redeeming and at times blissful, it brought about a sense of guilt for her experience with Claire. Nicole was able to breastfeed Charlotte who was diagnosed with a dairy and soy intolerance two weeks after birth. Nicole was able to eliminate both from her diet and Charlotte is currently thriving. 

Nicole hopes that by sharing her story it may provide a glimmer of hope for mamas with similar experiences.

Nicole Turcotte Bio

Nicole and her family reside in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. She and her husband, Kyle, share daughters Claire (2 yrs.) and Charlotte (4 mo). Nicole is a registered nurse/current stay at home mom and Kyle owns a landscaping/tree removal company.  Instagram handle – @nicole.m.turcotte

Resources

KiwiCo Panda Crate

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