I have been passionately guiding women through their healing journey since 2009 when I graduated from my first yoga teacher training. In 2011, I became certified as a pre/postnatal yoga teacher and was initiated into the secretive realm that is the childbearing year. I say ‘secretive’ because before that I – like so many other women I know - had little knowledge of what that year entailed (other than a vague sense of swollen ankles, a frantic drive to the hospital and diapers – i.e. all the things we learn from movies).
I was enthralled with the whole process of pregnancy, birth and post partum. One of my prenatal yoga students asked me to attend her birth to “help her breathe like we do in class.” Her birth was such an incredible experience and I was hooked.
In 2012, I became a Certified Birth Doula, accompanying parents and their families through the amazing and intense experience of childbirth. It was in the birthing space that I first witnessed the awe-inspiring magic of hypnosis. I watched women breathe their babies out of their bodies with greater ease and awareness.
I became a Certified HypnoBirthing Instructor in 2013, teaching classes to mamas/parents and their birth partners on how to effectively use hypnosis to tap into the deep wellspring of relaxation inside us all and how to access this abundant energy during birth. I fell in love with hypnosis, which I found out could be used as a therapeutic modality for many issues. I started going to a hypnotherapist myself during this time and addressed a multitude of issues I had collected over my thirty years of life: childhood trauma, bad PMS, insomnia, trauma I was experiencing at work and so much more. I found out firsthand how effective hypnotherapy is for so many problems. I was inspired to attend school to become a Certified Hypnotherapist, and graduated in December 2014. Since then I have had a private clinical practice, focusing on women’s health.
Before I was a healing arts practitioner, I earned a BA in Biological Anthropology and a MA in Cultural Anthropology. I wrote my Masters Thesis on the medicalization of maternity care in the U.S.
When I became pregnant in September 2015, I got to learn firsthand how fundamental hypnotherapy could be in the perinatal year. I felt pretty good the first 6 weeks of pregnancy and then BAM! The worst nausea I had ever felt hit me like a truck. It was a horrible, all day, sick-to-my-stomach feeling from the moment I woke up to the moment I went to sleep (“morning” sickness is a complete misnomer for some mamas!). For 9 weeks I was so sick that I had to go on medical leave from work.
During this time I tried everything. Sea bands, supplements, herbs, medications, hydration IVs, diet changes, acupuncture, chiropractic…everything I could find and nothing seemed to remotely help. I learned early on that the only thing that eased the nausea was hypnotherapy. The nausea literally disappeared while I was deep in hypnosis. I felt so lucky that at least I got some relief.
Thankfully the nausea went away by week 14. Throughout the rest of my pregnancy I used hypnotherapy for many other issues including round ligament pain, prenatal depression/anxiety and to prepare for my birth. I can honestly say I went into my birth with no conscious fear.
During my labor I dilated fast, which may sound better than it taking days to dilate, but it can be way more intense to open up that quickly. Hypnobirthing saved me from the worst of the pain. While in hypnosis during labor, the sensations were very manageable.
I was thrilled to learn firsthand that the techniques I had been teaching for years really worked. As a mama, I enjoy practicing hypnotherapy everyday as a way to relax, stay centered and deal with the stresses of parenting a baby (of which, it turns out, there are many).