Shared Decision Making
Our midwife believes that every pregnant person and their support people are entitled to holistic care that takes into account personal values and preferences. Through the ongoing process of shared decision-making, the midwife offers the pregnant person and their partner evidence-based information and options, engages the client in sharing their values, questions, and concerns, and together the midwife and the family develop a plan that provides for informed consent and refusal.
We follow the typical prenatal care schedule and offer the same lab work, ultrasounds, and genetic screening & testing including non-invasive prenatal testing options.
Educational handouts and consents developed and refined by our midwives are provided regularly to offer information and guidance for the many decisions you will face during pregnancy and while planning your birth.
We are Spinning Babies Enthusiasts and teach and encourage the body balancing techniques to help position your baby for a smooth birth.
Building Trust with Midwives
Our clients get to know their midwife throughout the course of prenatal care. You can expect your appointments with the midwife to last thirty to sixty minutes, and we invite your partner and other family members to join you.
The electronic medical record portal, and email for non-urgent needs help you stay connected. Clients may reach their midwife for urgent needs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week via our on-call number which rings directly to the midwife’s cell phone and results in a call back within minutes.
What's Prenatal Care Like?
Tailored 45 minute appointments. Unrushed, informative, grounding, kind, empathic.
You have so many questions in your pregnancy. You want TIME for those questions to be answered. You want to be nurtured, cared for. So that's what we do together.
"What should I do when my water breaks? Is it normal to pee this often? Can my other kids be at my birth? Should I take childbirth classes? What do you think about yoga in pregnancy?"
Trust. You want to KNOW who will be at your birth. You want to trust the person who will deliver your baby. You want the hormones of labor (the love hormone, oxytocin, especially) to carry you through to a birth experience you and your partner absolutely LOVE. You want look back at your pregnancy, birth, and new baby time, which are once-in-a-lifetime experiences, and have memories that you love for a lifetime. Because people REMEMBER how they were treated in their prenatal and birth experiences. Women and men remember them deeply. Becoming new parents is transformative. It's more important than your wedding. It forms a new relationship between the partners. It can be one of strength and mutual amazement with a birth that is all that YOU are capable of. And this starts with building trust over the prenatal visits, understanding your own power and that of this midwife to do whatever it takes to help you achieve the best possible version of your prenatal birth and postpartum experience.
Empowering. You want a different kind of prenatal care. You want a care provider who sees you as a powerful decision maker, giving YOU the most up to date, evidence-based options for lab testing, ultrasound, exercise, nutrition, new baby procedures - and YOU decide what is best for your family. You aren't satisfied with a provider (or a group of providers) you barely know telling you what to do, an impersonal approach, possibly suggesting an induction of labor, and giving you restrictions based on a one-size-fits all approach. They have to do it that way because they see thousands of people and work in a litigious mindset. They cannot tailor their care and have all the cogs in the factory work. So everyone gets the same care. Even though in health care, we know that individualizing each person's care gets the best outcomes. And in birth, which is the most intimate version of healthcare, many of us need the trust, warmth, encouragement and knowing our care providers in order to get the best for ourselves and our babies, and our families.
Many of our clients birth in the water. You will follow your body and we will follow your lead. If you want to labor in the water, give birth in the water, deliver your placenta in the water: Where you deliver is truly up to you.
We loan you a tub from around 36 weeks (a big comfy inflatable tub) and you can get in once you're in active labor. Some 1st time moms get out of the tub to birth - it just depends on where the right place is FOR YOU.
Births in the water are safe for babies and we attend them frequently. We will help you and your partner prepare the supplies and space.
We attend home births all around San Diego County. Whether you live in an apartment or a mansion- your home is safe and comfortable and where your body is most likely to open and soften in the labor process.
There are many statistics showing the safety of home birth. For more statistics, you can see the Resources page of our site.
Community birth refers to birth that occurs outside of a hospital setting—in homes and birth centers. The care that our midwives provide and the equipment and resources in both settings is similar. Birth outside of a hospital is for healthy, low-risk clients for whom we do not anticipate the need for medical intervention. Our midwives have unique training and experience to support the physiologic process of labor.
Surrounded by people you trust and in the privacy of an environment that is safe, familiar, and free of excess noise, light, and interruption, you will be free to trust your body to complete a process that is made to unfold without medical intervention.
After the birth, you will enjoy uninterrupted hours of skin to skin and bonding and the simple pleasures of a nourishing meal, a comfortable bed, and warm shower. Just during as your labor, your recovery will be free of unnecessary monitoring, and, instead, necessities such as rest, nutritious food, the support of loved ones, and close proximity to your baby will be supported.
While most birthing people who prepare for natural childbirth outside of the hospital go on to do so, some people will develop risks or desires during pregnancy or labor that make hospital birth more appropriate. In this case, while we do not have admitting privileges at area hospitals, we are able to help facilitate a safe transfer of care.
Similarly, if an urgent complication develops at home, such as a postpartum hemorrhage or a baby that requires assistance breathing after birth, the midwife is prepared with much of the same emergency medications and supplies that are found in the hospital. Nonetheless, the decision to undertake birth outside of the hospital setting comes with significant commitment and responsibility.
Our clients who give birth in their own home receive two postpartum visits within the first week after birth followed by two additional visits at two weeks and six weeks postpartum. These visits may occur in the office, the clients’ home, or via telemedicine. We will review an individualized postpartum care plan with each client.
During the course of your postpartum care, we will address your physical recovery as well as the immense emotional and family adjustment to parenthood that occurs with each new baby, even for experienced parents! At the culmination of your postpartum care, we can provide contraception information and invite you to continue with us for wellness care.
Our midwives care for your newborn for about 6 weeks after birth, at which time we will refer you to continue newborn care with your pediatrician. During the two postpartum home visits, the midwife will provide California State required screening tests for your baby including cardiac and metabolic screenings, if you choose to have these. We will also refer your baby for a hearing screening to be done within about 6 weeks after birth, and may provide recommendations for providers who can perform circumcision if you desire.
We provide paperwork and a smooth path to obtaining a birth certificate, getting your baby on your insurance, and a social security card. This process is very simple and straightforward.
We now also offer Placenta Encapsulation.
Benefits of Placenta Encapsulation
Diminished risk of postpartum depression and potential mood enhancement
Decreased fatigue and improved energy
Faster involution (shrinking down) of the uterus after birth
Replenishment of nutrients, including iron
Potential for increased milk supply and improved lactation experience
All community based midwives are trained to provide support for breastfeeding/chestfeeding. Additionally, we have several lactation consultants we work with who can visit you and your baby in the home to help with breastfeeding challenges such as nipple or breast pain, problems with latch, issues with milk supply, establishing a pumping routine, and addressing challenges with newborn weight gain.
Our lactation support services are open to anyone who desires them but we are only able to provide home visits for those who were established with us for prenatal care.
Talk with our resident placenta encapsulator: Kayti's mom, "Pookey."
Want to hear more? Send Jo an email and she'll get you all taken care of.
Wellness care for the whole person in a comfortable, home-like setting
An annual visit with the midwife is a full hour long and involves discussion about your overall physical and emotional health and well-being, sexuality, fertility, health screenings, and recommendation for follow-up.
Midwives can take care of womxn across the lifespan, from adolescence to menopause. We embrace providing empowering healthcare for anyone with a vagina, uterus, or cervix who requires it, regardless of their gender identity.
Health & cancer screenings
We provide stirrup-free (seriously!) pelvic exams when obtaining Pap smears for cervical cancer screenings, referrals for mammogram and breast ultrasound, and can also provide screenings for sexually transmitted infections as well as draw routine bloodwork in our office. Pelvic exams are invasive and are not performed in our office as a matter of routine but rather when there is an indication and after careful discussion and consideration with the client. We provide a trauma-informed approach to care, particularly in regards to your pelvic and breast health.Most commonly, our clients insert the speculum themselves when we are using one, reducing friction and allowing you to remain in control. This makes for a much less uncomfortable or traumatizing experience.
Our midwives can discuss with you the full range of contraceptive options, from fertility awareness to condoms to birth control pills. We cannot insert intrauterine devices (IUDs) in our office. Licensed Midwives in CA do not have full prescriptive authority which means that we cannot prescribe any medications. However, we also offer holistic support for an integrative approach to your wellness.
Pre-conception Planning & Fertility Support
Considering pregnancy? We can help you be your healthiest self upon conception and better understand your fertility in order to achieve pregnancy at an ideal time for your family, career, or other life circumstances.
A Fertility Visit includes a look at your fertility cycle, supplements, complementary health professional referrals, and setting you up with all you might want to become ready to conceive.