Long Epidural Birth followed by Surprise Homebirth + Postpartum Anxiety and Depression

Adina got pregnant with her first baby in 2017, and her daughter was born after a long hospital birth that included an epidural and other interventions to help labor move along. Shortly after birth she developed postpartum anxiety and depression, amid breastfeeding issues and challenges with insomnia. Her second baby was born in May 2020, shortly after the pandemic began. She planned another hospital birth, however her son’s labor progressed much faster than her first and he was unexpectedly born at home with assistance from her doula. She struggled again with postpartum anxiety and depression, but was able to push through breastfeeding challenges and establish a successful nursing relationship.

Adina Olsen Bio

Adina lives in the Bay Area, California with her husband of 10 years and her two children Adriana (5) and Atlin (3). She is currently pregnant with her third baby. Connect with her on Facebook at Adina Olsen.


Baby Tula

This episode is sponsored by Baby Tula. Baby Tula creates unique and expressive carriers that help parents keep doing what they love while connecting with their little ones. Baby carriers are so much more than a parenting tool! When you wear your baby, you support the emotional, social, and physical well-being of your baby as well as your own! With a variety of unique prints, small batch and handwoven fabrics, inclusive sizing, and carriers for older babies too, you can find a carrier that’s distinctly you! You can use the code BIRTHHOUR at BabyTula.com and BabyTula.Co.UK.

“Black Girl Magic” Hospital Induction Birth Story

Kiira and her husband, David, decided to start “trying” after 4 years of marriage (13 years together) and got pregnant right away! Kiira’s pregnancy was mostly happy and calm, with the exception of first trimester nausea and second and third trimester sciatic pain. All of her prenatal care was at a local birth center, staffed by many midwives of color. It was extremely important to both Kiira and David to have OB providers who would listen and respect their wishes, and having Black midwives was one of the best ways they could think of to ensure that. They also hired a Black doula to support them through the pregnancy and labor. Kiira planned on a birth center delivery, with minimal intervention, but that’s not how things ended up.

Around the time she was 36 weeks, the birth center went on a “diversion” requiring all births to take place in a hospital. This was a huge source of disappointment and frustration for Kiira and David because it went against all their plans. They both held out hopes that the diversion would be over by the time Kiira delivered. But, when she went into post-dates and had an unsuccessful biophysical profile, she ended up needing an induction anyway. Going completely against her birth plan, Kiira wound up having an induction using Cytotec, Pitocin, nitrous, and an epidural. She labored for nearly two full days and pushed for close to four hours total. On April 26th, she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl in a room of incredible Black women (plus David). Although Kiira’s birth looked very different from what she had planned, it ended up being exactly what she needed. She had a care team that fully supported and cheered for her from start to finish. Kiira’s postpartum journey had challenges of PPA and low milk supply, but she immediately fell in love with being a mom and remains that way to this day.

kiira lyons birth story

Kiira Lyons Bio

Kiira is a wife, researcher, and mom of two. She lives in the triangle region of NC and is a lifelong Tar Heel. She is an avid podcast listener and has been a birth junkie since watching The Business of Being Born at 18. Connect with her on Facebook.


  • Doulas! Midwives! IBCLCs!
  • The Birth Hour
  • Evidence based birth
  • Kelly Mom
  • Facebook groups – local parent groups and national/international support groups for specific concerns (low supply)


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 thisisneeded.com with code BIRTHHOUR.

Two Hospital Births: PPD and turning to Alcohol, Finding Sobriety and a Joyful Postpartum

When pregnant with her first child, Jen’s pregnancy was subject to many rounds of additional tests and scans throughout her pregnancy as she was being continuously monitored for IUGR. She eventually was pressured into an induction, which failed at the first attempt, sending her home after 48 hours not in labor and with a baby. Waiting it out over the next few days, Jen was leaking amniotic fluid without realizing and ended up back to a 2nd induction a few days later, this time with no fluid left. Her son was born at a low birth weight for gestational age which subjected him to numerous tests during his stay in the hospital and additional monitoring for months after delivery.

The anxiety surrounding her pregnancy and birth resulted in PPD where Jen turned to alcohol to self-medicate and cope. After about 2 years of evaluating her relationship with alcohol and failed attempts at moderation, Jen came to the realization that the only path for her was sobriety. Three days after making that promise to herself and her family, Jen found out she was pregnant with baby number 2.

Her second pregnancy was textbook from start until (almost) finish. It ended in an emergency C-section but despite the trauma she thought that might cause, she was able to fend off the PPD through proper medication, sobriety, and support.  

jen fracker birth story

Jen Fracker Bio

Jen is a mom to 2 children living in southern Connecticut.  Her first, a son Eric, was born in 2018 and her daughter, Harlow, was born in March 2021. Jen and her husband Chris have been married about 6 years and live a happy and full life with their family and friends.

She can be found on Facebook by searching Jennifer Fracker or on Instagram at @jdfracker and encourages anyone who finds strength in her story to reach out.


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 genate.com and Use code BIRTHHOUR15 for 15% off your order.

Positive Induction After Infertility with Difficult Postpartum Dealing With Loss of Parent

Despite a beautiful, complication free pregnancy, Megan’s path to motherhood was not easy. After years of struggling to conceive, several fibroid removal surgeries, a difficult new role at work and the loss of her father during her first trimester, it felt as if she was stuck in knee-deep mud not knowing whether to grieve or allow herself to be happy.

Before long, at 41 weeks, she arrived at the hospital for her scheduled induction. After a great response to the Foley balloon, labor was in full swing. Despite the immense pain over the course of 15 hours, Megan felt like she was finally able to release the anguish that had accumulated over the past 9 months and finally, her son Sterling Dagger was born in a dimly lit room surrounded by his father and grandmother.

Megan’s postpartum wasn’t without stress and unfortunately, because of incorrect information regarding her LOA benefits, her maternity leave was cut from 16 weeks to 12 weeks. Returning to work was difficult for her and her husband, and ultimately, it was decided that she would leave her full-time job and pursue part-time work to once again be the primary caregiver of their son. Watching her son grow and explore the world around him felt like the best decision for her emotionally and her family.

megan spar birth story

Megan Spar Bio

Megan is a 38 yr old creative millennial who, after graduating college, landed in the world of visual merchandising. She enjoys making things with her hands, listening to birth and tech podcasts and spending time with family. She met the love of her life, Brian, right after high school and after 10 years together they got married in Newport, RI on a cliff overlooking the water surrounded by a small group of friends and family. Now almost 20 years later they are raising their first child, Sterling Dagger and looking forward to this new adventure they’re on called parenthood. Connect with her on IG @everythingafteryou.



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 and new Evolve 3-in-1 Bouncer that we discussed on the podcast!

Homebirth After Two Hospital Births + Unexpected PPD

*photo credit Gwen Schroeder

Allison Yarrow shared her first two birth stories on episode 273 of The Birth Hour (listen to that episode here) and today she is back to share her more recent homebirth as well as her postpartum experience —all of which influenced her most recent book.

Allison Yarrow Bio

Ali is an award-winning journalist, speaker, and author of 90s Bitch: Media, Culture, and the Failed Promise of Gender Equality (Harper Perennial, 2018), finalist for the Los Angeles Press Club book award, and Birth Control: The Insidious Power of Men Over Motherhood (Hachette/Seal Press, July 2023).

She has written about health, politics, and gender for many publications including the New York Times, the Washington Post, Vox, Insider, USA Today, Time, and Newsweek. She was a national magazine award finalist, a TED resident, an Aspen Ideas Festival fellow, and a grantee of the International Women’s Media Foundation. She produced the award-winning Vice News documentary “Misconception,” and gave a TED talk called “What to Expect Post-Expecting.”

Allison was raised in Macon, Georgia, and lives in Brooklyn with her husband, daughter, and sons. Connect with Ali via her website or Instagram.



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 and new Evolve 3-in-1 Bouncer that we discussed on the podcast!

Preparing Differently for 2nd Out-of-Hospital Birth after ECV + Discussion of Multiple Losses

Aaron’s first full-term pregnancy and birth followed two first-trimester miscarriages. Aaron was referred to a hematologist to rule out any blood clotting issues and was encouraged to be on a blood thinner for the subsequent pregnancy. Due to a spinal surgery that prevented spinal pain control, Aaron planned for an unmedicated, out-of-hospital birth at a birth center. After a first trimester of being on blood thinners, her OB and MFM agreed that the blood thinners were unnecessary and that she could plan for the unmedicated, out-of-hospital birth she wanted. After an uneventful final two trimesters, she went into labor spontaneously in the 39th week. After 21 hours of challenging active labor and 2.5 hours of pushing, Oliver entered the world. Aaron was challenged by severe nausea from early labor through delivery, inconsistent but intense contractions, and scar tissue on the cervix, which prevented typical progression and had to be manually extracted. Aaron struggled with feeling well-resourced during the long labor. 

Almost three years later, Aaron found herself in a similar situation: pregnant after another two miscarriages. This time Aaron was put on a progesterone regime for the first trimester. For this birth, Aaron planned for a home birth with midwives. The only thing getting in the way of this plan was a stubbornly breech baby. After unsuccessful attempts to turn the baby at home, Aaron and her spouse decided to do an ECV in the 38th week. While nerve-wracking, the procedure was successful and ultimately an empowering experience of using evidence-based resources to make the best decision for their family. Aaron went on to go slightly over her due date and began feeling contractions at 40 + 5. Expecting a prolonged dilation, Aaron didn’t feel ready to call the midwives, but luckily, her husband insisted, and they arrived just in time to help deliver their baby girl in the tub after 4 hours of active labor. During this labor, Aaron worked on moving, eating, drinking, and taking Zofran to maintain her strength. 

waterbirth after ECV

Aaron Brame Bio

lives in Gainesville, FL, with her spouse, Jason, children Oliver, 3, Lula, seven months old, and pup Penny. Aaron works at an educational non-profit, and her spouse owns a fine woodworking business. Oliver and Lula specialize in making each other laugh and generally being really great kids. Aaron can be reached on Instagram at aaron_brame and also by email at abrame06@gmail.com


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 learn about the new wearable Aura pump, plus see how you can get it covered through insurance at motifmedical.com/birthhour

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