To listen to this episode, and the rest of The Birth Hour archives, join our listener supporter group here!
L&D Nurse Shares her Natural Childbirth Stories
Today’s guest is Sarah Villareal, who is an L&D (labor and delivery) nurse and mother. She is going to share all three of her birth stories and why she chose to have natural births (one in the hospital, one at a birth center, and one at home) each time.
Sarah says “I am the Mother to 3 amazing children: Arraya (9), Harbor (4), and Solay (17 months). I am married to the love of my life, my soulmate and the guy who keeps life interesting and always funny, Justin. We have been together for 11 years. We are most certainly partners and share in the responsibility of raising this family. I am a full time Registered Nurse in Labor and Delivery and love my job with all my heart. I love being able to support women through what ever type of birth they wish to have, and then also supporting them when the plans need to change.
I am passionate about birth, about supporting women through pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period. I like to think we live a healthy life style and that we are raising our kids to be decent people. I have been blessed with easy pregnancies, except that I gain a ton of weight (about 50-60 pounds each one). So my last pregnancy I just refused to be weighed, I already knew I was gaining plenty. I have had 3 unmedicated vaginal deliveries. One in the hospital, one in a free standing birth center, and one home birth. I was born at home, most women in my family that I knew of had unmedicated births, it just seemed normal to me. Having a home birth was something so important to my heart and thankfully the stars aligned to make it happen. I draw strength from my births and I hope that my daughters feel that too.” Connect with Sarah on Instagram, or leave a comment for her below.
More Pointers from Sarah as a L&D Nurse
- Talk to your care provider! For example, try to get honest answers about when they routinely induce for post dates just because you are past your due date, not for any other medical reason.
- Talk about their monitoring policies.
- I strongly suggest ensuring you are receiving care form a provider who actually works in L&D. Just because they are an OB does not mean they practice in L&D.
- Talk about if they allow someone to go home for expectant management after their water breaks or if they are advised to stay in the hospital.
- Above all, ensure you use (and remind your provider to use) language that is open. Never saying “I will not let you” or that is “not allowed” instead saying We “recommend” and I have to “inform” you.
- Hospital informed consent is all about ensuring that you know you have options….you may not like any of them, but you should always have options.
- Ina May Gaskin “Guide to Childbirth“
- To delve a little deeper into the system I loved the book “Birth Matters” also.
- Hynobirthing book – Filling your mind with positive affirmations is so important. Repeatedly saying “I am strong, I can do this” is amazingly powerful.
- Why Not Home documentary – a film about medical professionals who choose to give birth at home.
Earth Mama Angel Baby Products Mentioned
Angel Baby Oil – great for infant massage and beyond
Angel Baby Lotion – with lovely orange and vanilla scent, great for moms who suffer from morning sickness
Hi Sarah, I had both my babies at home and just recently got hired as a L&D nurse. I am a little nervous about my views on natural birth (love it) and the hospital’s many interventions and the fact that as a nurse I’ll be carrying out many of these orders. Do you have any advice on this? How do you view everything that you do with peace? I want to support the mama in every way (her way) but I don’t want to harm her or baby with things that may be unnecessary ):