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My background in the holistic birth field began nearly a decade ago when I trained as a doula through DONA International. Very soon after that I took part in one of the most powerful human experiences a woman can have – I attended the birth of a close friend as her doula and the experience was incredible and inspiring. Witnessing a woman work with all of her being to open in body, mind, and spirit to give birth to her baby is something purely magical and beautiful. After sharing this experience with her I knew I wanted to continue to support women in their labor and birth process. In the years to come I did just that. I continued to work as a doula supporting birthing mothers in both the hospital and out-of-hospital settings.

In 2006 I was blessed to experience my own rite of passage with the birth of my own daughter. She was born at home with midwives in a tub of water in our living room. Her birth was beautiful and peaceful and transformative…everything I could have asked for in a first birth experience. Experiencing birth from this side was the most empowering feeling I have ever had and has forever changed the way I support women.

Mama & Luna IB campaignIn the same year I trained to be a Certified Lactation Counselor through the Healthy Children’s Project and a Childbirth Educator through Advanced Birthing Concepts and Birthing From Within. In the years that followed I offered lactation counseling through the WIC program at the Seminole County Health Dept as well as the pediatric practice of Dr. Joseph Cannizzaro in Longwood. I taught Birthing From Within classes both privately and at the Florida School of Holistic Living and also dedicated much of my spare time to doing advocacy work in my community as a board member of the Central Florida Birth Network (now known as the Birth Network of Florida). Advocating for women and mothers in my community is something I continue to feel passionate about. In 2012 I helped to coordinate Orlando’s first Improving Birth rally and also coordinated our 2013 rally. All of this with my sweet girl in tow, although these days she sits next to me rather than on me in her sling!

 

I am a 2002 graduate of the University of Central Florida and a 2013 graduate of the Florida School of Traditional Midwifery where I studied midwifery care for 3 years. I’ve trained with several of Orlando’s midwives including Licensed Midwives and Certified Nurse-Midwives. I am certified in NRP (Neonatal Resuscitation Program) and CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation). I also hold a certification and training in waterbirth and feel blessed to count Barbara Harper, pioneer of waterbirth research, as one of my mentors. I’ve attended over a hundred births, a majority of them being waterbirths with very little intervention and vaginal births after a previous cesarean. I continue to feel inspired to learn about both the medical and mystical aspects of birth and midwifery. My area of interest, for many years, has been the long term emotional, psychological and spiritual implications that gestation and the birth process have on a human life and on society as a whole, an area of study referred to as “birth psychology”.

I am incredibly proud of what I have experienced and achieved and feel overjoyed to share my vision and serve my community through Sacred Birth!

~Michelle

 


 

imageAlyssa Kaplan is trained as a midwife assistant and currently works as an active doula serving central Florida. She has completed training approved by DONA International and has attended nearly 70 natural births. Alyssa is a mother of one bright spirited boy, a natural birth advocate and an avid yoga practitioner. She has been practicing yoga since 2003 and currently holds the title as a 200 hr. Registered Yoga Teacher and Certified Prenatal Yoga Teacher. She draws from her yoga experiences to call in a calm and collected labor; often reminding mothers of their breath and vast internal inspiration.

 

Alyssa believes the most powerful tool she can offer the community is knowledge and awareness. One of her main goals as a birth worker, is to inform, educate, and inspire her families to explore their potential. She currently offers childbirth classes for all birthing families. These classes include preparation for a natural home birth, navigating a successful natural hospital birth, Vaginal Birth After Cesarean classes, and Labor Essential workshops. Alyssa intricately combines yoga techniques with ‘Hypnobabies’ and ‘Birthing From Within’ practices to best educate and prepare her clients for their sacred birth.

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Alyssa also feels passionate about supporting her clients through the transitional period known as the postpartum period. She is currently offering lactation counseling at the Seminole Health Department. Next year, Alyssa will hold the title of IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) to better serve the families of Central Florida.


 

 

imageLauren Postal is trained as a midwife’s assistant, certified doula, lactation counselor, and childbirth educator serving Central Florida.  She has been a practicing child birth consultant for over 4 years and has attended more than 70 births.

Her passion in life is to support women and families during the childbearing years and she strives to encourage personal empowerment and family connections through birth.
imageWhen Lauren is not attending births she is spending time with her husband and two vivacious children who continue to inspire her everyday.