I would love to recommend most highly our wonderful homebirth midwife Susanna Napierala. Susanna has been an integral part of the births of both of our beautiful children.
We have learned so much from her vast amount of experience as a pioneer bringing waterbirths to the U.S. Our first child was supposed to be a homebirth, but our boy came just a bit too early. Susanna had prepared us well beforehand, getting to know us and allowing us to get to know her. She provided perspective, and options enabling us to ultimately make the difficult decision to go to the hospital with her support and accompaniment. At the hospital, she helped us implement our birth plan without medical interventions by giving us advice from informed observations throughout the evolving labor. She supported us and was sensitive for our need to advocate for ourselves in the hospital/corporate environment.
For our daughter’s birth, we had the wonderful experience of a home waterbirth. It was during this birth that we were able to see Susanna truly in her element. She was clear about the roles for each participant, and displayed great leadership making sure we had the proper team assembled (i.e. 2nd midwife, and doula), and that we understood our supportive roles for the wishes and needs of mama and baby. The labor and birth itself was short and beautiful, dictated by mama and baby. Susanna was strong, calm, and supportive. She allowed the process to unfold at its natural pace, saying just the right thing, in just the right way to each of us. She recognized the signs of the process and advised accordingly and decisively. She is a consummate professional who leaves nothing to chance yet does not impose unnecessary treatments or interventions. She empowers parents and especially birth mothers to own the process and give birth without fear.
I hope more families call on Susanna. She is a treasure in this world of ever increasing medicalization and corporatization of the birth process.
She demonstrates to us how to be in touch with and trust our bodies.