I earned my BSN in 1993 and worked as a registered nurse in various settings, all maternal-child related, in the states of Oklahoma, Texas, and right here, in Mobile, Alabama. I attended Birthing Options Birth Assistant Training in the summer and early fall of 2011, and needless to say, I was hooked! For the next 4 years, I had the honor of attending births and postpartum visits as my family schedule allowed. I created my birth class curriculum and officially launched Beit Birth in 2016 and have furthered my skills in this arena by becoming a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) through the Academy of Lactation Policy and Practice and the Center for Breastfeeding. I also have certified through the Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association (CAPPA) as a CAPPA Certified Childbirth Educator (CCCE). In 2019, I completed a Spinning Babies training and a vbac avanced doula training with The VBAC Link, with whom I have since become a certified vbac doula (CVD (TVL)). I have been married to my college sweetheart, who is also my biggest cheerleader, since 1993. I also have 3 grown boys who will tell you themselves that they know way more about birth than they probably wish to know! I am hopeful that will be a blessing for their future families!
The birth of my children has affected my life in a much greater capacity than I could ever have imagined. When I became pregnant with my first child, I naively followed what I thought was the normal path and simply trusted the system. My husband and I attended the first one or two hospital-taught childbirth classes but were unable to finish the series due to scheduling conflicts. A little over 3 weeks from my due date, my early labor began, and once admitted to the hospital, our excitement quickly turned to devastation and shock when we were told that our unborn daughter had passed away. She was delivered vaginally that evening with a pitocin induction. Looking back, I can see that multiple warning signs were present, and we possibly could have had a different outcome had I educated myself and trusted my instincts. Thankfully, God's peace and comfort sustained us though it was not an easy season. One year later, our first son was born under the careful watch of a high-risk ob/gyn. Though I had a successful, pitocin-induced, vaginal delivery at 38 weeks, he was not fully cooked, so to speak, and our breastfeeding relationship was not a very good one as a result. His refusal to continue to nurse at 10 weeks was heart-breaking for me, but he continued to thrive, and we made it together fine. Almost 3 years later I birthed another son only 2 days from my due date, still via a pitocin-induced, vaginal delivery. This little boy breastfed until 14 months - it's getting better! By the way, I'm so incredibly grateful that I was able to have three babies induced without a c-section as a result! So, here I came to my last pregnancy, and knowing I would like to have a different experience, since it might be my last chance, I chose to educate myself and plan this birth. I faithfully studied natural childbirth books and any other resources at my disposal and created a birth plan. Though I still used an ob/gyn and a hospital, this labor started and proceeded on its own and resulted in the vaginal delivery of our third son without the use of pitocin or an epidural. I was simply amazed that my body knew how and when to birth and that I could feel so good after having a baby!
How many times since then have I said I would like a do-over? Countless! Of course, if I knew then what I have since learned, I would have approached the first three completely differently and even would have changed some things with my last child. I am extremely passionate about making sure that mothers have all of the information they need to make educated decisions for themselves. Standard hospital policies and protocols aren't the only choices available for birth. Understanding the options and how to make educated decisions can mean the difference between a "normal" birth and a great birth. My goal is to work with moms and their care providers to create supportive birth teams and to offer the education and services that Mobile area moms and their families need to have the birthing and breastfeeding experiences they deserve.