Monday, August 4, 2014

These Young Living Essential Oils are too expensive!

These essential oils are SO EXPENSIVE. I mean, really REALLY expensive. 

Did you know it could cost as much as .35 to use PanAway on a headache or menstrual cramps? Layer Peppermint on top and you're up to .44. Who has that kind of money? That's crazy talk!

A woman I know used nearly $3.00 in Thieves oil to get rid of her son's Strep. She could have almost bought a Starbucks latte with that! What was she thinking?!?

.05 on Lemon oil for an ear infection. Is she a millionaire?!

.09 a drop on Valor to help with depression, anxiety, PTSD, ADD, OCD, confidence, snoring, and on. And on.

Do you know what is ACTUALLY expensive? 

Missing work because you are sick. 
Going to Target and buying toxic OTC meds that cover up your symptoms. 
Missing work because your child is sick. 
Going to the doctor and paying for a prescription with a slew of side-effects. 
Then needing another one for those side effects.
And another. 

And your body getting sicker because of all of the side effects and medication interactions.

Because you think that's your only option.

Natural remedies that actually work without harmful side effects? Priceless.

When you buy the Young Living Premium Starter Kit, you're getting eleven of the most popular, most versatile essential oils (5 mL bottles) plus a free diffuser. Sure it's $150 plus shipping and tax--which is expensive to a lot of people. I get it. 

Are you willing to budget your money so you can start using safe, natural plant oils with no synthetics or additives to replace everything (yes, I said EVERYTHING) in your medicine cabinet?
You also get a 5 mL bottle of Stress Away, which is my mommy must-have. It's like having a glass of wine without having a glass of wine. Which is way more politically correct to do at 10 am than toting wine in your water bottle. Just sayin.

Buying the Premium Starter Kit makes you a wholesale member so you'll get the wholesale discount--24% off. No requirement to buy stuff monthly so you can keep your discount. That's not cool. Then you end up with a bathroom cabinet full of stuff you don't need or plan to use just because you had to make a monthly order. 
(yes, I've done that with other membership programs). 

AND the other cool thing? There's no requirement to sell anything EVER!

So...what do you have to lose? Who would want to help their family get healthier using safe, natural, pure plant oils? Why would you want to do that?!? Who would want to save time and money by using oils vs going to the doctor all the time and filling up those prescriptions? Nah...too much trouble.

In all seriousness, isn't your health and your family's health worth it?
I'm so glad that we started using these oils. I thought we were pretty healthy (and we are). We used homeopathics and herbs here and there when we had issues but pretty much just lived with our aches and pains--not really dealing with them other than the occasional visit to the chiro. Now that we've started using Young Living essential oils (cuz yes, I have used other cheaper oils--rookie mistake), we've been able to stop allergy symptoms, stop snoring, stop jaw clenching and discomfort, stop back aches, stop headaches, get rid of rashes, get rid of acne, soothe sunburns, sleep deeply and restfully and help family members feel more calm, grounded and centered! These are all things we would have just lived with and suffered. Now that we're using Young Living essential oils, we're not suffering anymore! It's really amazing!

If you'd like to get this amazing kit I keep talking about, you can sign up HERE.
You can also contact me through my Contact Me page at my website at www.AWellLivedLife.Net. Or leave a comment here and I'll help walk you through the process.

I can also add you to my secret Facebook group where you can learn all about the oils, how to use them and have the support of over 2700 people that are learning just like you. Just people talking oils--no sales. Let me know if you'd like to join my group.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

What kind of air freshener do you use?

It always makes me cringe a little when I see those plug in air fresheners in homes, offices, or even classrooms. They always give me a headache! The aroma is too strong for me! 
I wonder if people realize they are inhaling toxic chemicals? 
Here's proof that those other air fresheners are harmful to your health!

"A study of 14 common household air fresheners has found that most of the surveyed products contain chemicals that can aggravate asthma and affect reproductive development."

Hmmmm....that's not good for anyone!

The article also states that "Independent lab testing confirmed the presence of phthalates, or hormone-disrupting chemicals that may pose a particular health risk to babies and young children, in 12 of the 14 products---including those marked "all natural". None of the products had these chemicals listed on their labels."

WHAT?!? They can have harmful chemicals NOT on the label?!? Even on the ones that say "all natural"?!? Say it isn't so!

I love that when I diffuse my essential oils in my home in not only smells amazing, but I'm purifying the air naturally and the therapeutic properties of the oils benefits my whole family.

And by diffusing essential oils, I'm affecting the limbic system and creating a calmer mind and body!

When you order a Premium Starter kit, you get a diffuser for FREE! 

Getting the Premium Starter Kit gives you the benefits of being a wholesale member for an entire year with NO monthly minimums, NO pressure to sell, and NO cheesy sale pitches from me! You'll get 11 of the most popular oils, some sample sachets, a FREE diffuser and a membership to my secret Facebook group called The Apothecary Society--a place where you can learn about essential oil uses in a no-sales talk environment.
Contact Carol Yeh-Garner via her website at www.AWellLivedLife.Net for more info or go to this link to buy your kit now: Carol's Young Living Sign Up Link

Carol Yeh-Garner (Platinum member #1533467) is an Independent Distributor for Young Living Essential Oils & belongs to the Lemon Dropper team. She is not a doctor and does not claim to be one on TV. She does not give medical advise. If you have a medical issue, please seek medical attention.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

PTSD, Reactive Attachment Disorder and Essential Oils

Did you know that 22 million vets suffer from PTSD? And that's only the ones that have gone to get help! So many other's suffer from PTSD too--adults & children who have suffered abuse, trauma, sudden loss of a loved one...even difficult divorces!

GREEN BERET ENDED 45 YEARS OF PTSD WITH ESSENTIAL OILS SERGEANT MAJOR JESS JOHNSON, ARMY GREEN BERET and VIETNAM VET shared his journey with PTSD. 45 years of trauma that started while in the Vietnam conflict has finally come to an end with Young Living. Jess joined the army when he was only 18. He was put in charge of triage in the 101st Airborne Division as their lead M.A.S.H. Medic. For the last 45 years, Jess has awakened every night between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. and could not sleep. These were the exact hours he was on radio watch back in the “War.” He tried several ways to heal, but nothing helped. This decorated soldier stayed in the army for 30 years went to special forces training, but that didn’t help. He put himself back in combat situations–went back to Iraq 11 times. And that didn’t help. But, as he joyfully shared with the Convention listeners: “I met Gary Young 7 months ago — his oils work!” For the first time in 45 years I now sleep a full 8 hours and no longer experience the nightmares. So powerful!” He also reported that just using a drop of frankincense under his tongue once a day has helped him be less rageful.

In a pilot study done by Gary Young earlier this year, a few other vets that suffered from Stage 4 or 5 PTSD (severe, debilitating, and unable to work) were given oils. Within the first night, they had slept a solid night's sleep with no nightmares. Within 5 days, they were off all of their pharmaceutical medications! One of them asked Gary--How will I know when I'm healed? Gary replied--When you can look forward in your life. A few weeks after the pilot study ended, Gary followed up with the group. All of them were getting a full night's sleep with no nightmares and were still off all of their medications. One of them had been able to get a job. All of them reported being more present & being less rageful, angry and resentful. And the one who asked Gary how he would know if he was healed told Gary--I have my life back again. I can see that I have a future.

Over 22 veterans commit suicide in the United States every single day because of PTSD. Royal Crown Diamond Kathy Farmer (pictured) lost her son to a military PTSD suicide. Other testimonials from a woman who had a traumatic divorce & a child who had 2 near death experience were given on the delivering power of the new Freedom Release Collection and Freedom Sleep Collection. These oils are helping people reclaim their life from the trauma of PTSD and the inability to sleep.


We heard the story below at the Young Living Convention by a counselor that treated this family. (It brought me to tears.)

As promised, here is Zac's story as told by his mom. The pain that we all felt after hearing this heart wrenching account of abuse was only eased by sharing in the mom's joy of healing for her son using prayer and nature's medicine - Young Living Essential Oils - Please feel free to share this hope with others who may suffer from severe stress symptoms or know someone who does. PTSD is no respecter of age, gender, or social condition.It is estimated that approximately 5.2 million people have PTSD in a given year. It is like being trapped in a living hell without any hope of peace and healing. I believe that there is hope and healing and while Zac's is perhaps the most profound healing I have witnessed, there are many other stories of lives that have been restored to normal using Young Living's new Freedom kits and other Young Living essential oils.
This is our story.
"My husband and I decided to adopt after our four children were getting ready to go on to college. We went through CPS and fostered then adopted two beautiful siblings. They came straight from their biological mother to our home. Zac was 2 and Ella was just an infant. They both had suffered unimaginable abuse and neglect. Zac is now 6 and his sister just turned 5. (editor's note: The children were apparently subjected to "Black Magic" and sexual abuse rituals as well)
Unfortunately for Zac, it was worse as he lived in those conditions for a full two years before The Lord brought them to our home. Zac has very vivid memories of the nightmare him and his sister lived, memories that torment him day and night. Because of this, he has been given multiple psychiatric diagnoses, not to mention they were both exposed to alcohol and drugs in utero.
Zac has what is known as “Reactive attachment Disorder” ( editor's note: a subcategory of PTSD). Basically, he couldn’t attach to me his mother because of what he suffered in the hands of his biological mother. I couldn’t hug my son because it was physically painful and terrifying for him, I couldn’t cuddle with him at bed time, and he had this dark look in his eyes when he looked at me. Zac would throw up almost daily on purpose if he did not get his way. Zac had not slept a full night without nightmares or getting up multiple times in the night since we got him four and a half years ago. He had been in a psychiatric hospital for violence, threatening to kill himself, his sister or me.(editor's note: Zac pulled a knife and threatened to kill both his mother and sister and broke his mother's leg).
He takes multiple psychotropic medications just to stabilize him and for the rest of the house to survive day to day. We installed monitors cameras, had someone move in with us for the times my husband travels just to take Ella out of the house during Zac's rages.
His post adoption services suggested it was time for us to “give Zac back to the custody of the state” to protect his sister, they sent the paperwork for us to fill out but my husband and I were not ok with this and we were in a desperate situation asking God for answers.
That’s when we were introduced to essential oils. I’ll be honest; at that point if someone told me that if they brought a cow to my house and sacrificed it, and it would help, I would have done it. I’m not one to buy anything from anyone. I run when I see the Avon lady or the Mary Kay lady. I had nothing else to lose and we didn’t want to lose our son.
The night I started the oils we have had a really “bad day” with Zac, he fell asleep after hours of screaming how much he hated me and he wanted me to die. Honestly I couldn’t remember exactly what oil to use but I remember frankincense was the “go to” so when it was “safe” for me to touch him I put them on...Zac slept all night, no screaming, no nightmares, no getting up 4,5,6,7,8 times a night. I know this because I didn’t sleep “waiting for the wrath” after the day we had.
The changes we have seen in Zac are huge. God is working in him through these oils. It is such a blessing for our family. He hugs me a lot, he allows for me to touch him and hold him, I can tuck him in at night, pray with him. He has only thrown up once in the last month. His occupational therapist reported after only one week of the oils that his hand writing had dramatically improved. His teacher came to me in tears the day after I started the oils to tell me what a “beautiful day” Zac had in the class.
He can have conversations with us and express his feeling instead of acting them out...the list goes on and on. We know we will have struggles but we have HOPE and that you can’t get in a pill.
The Lord placed these oils that he created in our hands and our son is able to feel the love that his forever family has for him. He can feel accepted, part of our family, like a child again.
My prayer is that if you are reading or hearing this testimony that you will know in your heart that there is hope and that God created these for a reason, not for a fad or for something else for people to cash in on. His purpose is for healing, for joy to be restored.
Jeremiah 29:11
“For I know the plans I have for you” declares The Lord, “plans to prosper you not to harm you, plans to give you HOPE and a future...

Update: Zac has not had a single rage attack since starting the oils. The essential oils Release and Forgiveness were being used prior to the introduction of the Young Living Freedom kits and these were the ones that stabilized him.He uses Frankincense and Peace and Calming when his mind starts to race. He is off his medications. Mom uses the Feelings Kit in the diffuser and Zac releases many feelings. He can even talk about his birth mom, something that no psychologist has been able to do. He was also due to have an autism screening but mom cancelled it because the symptoms subsided. Praise God for this Healing!! Thank You Gary Young for following God's leading on your life and being steadfast in your commitment to bring Young Living essential oils into every home. Thank you Jenny M for having the compassion and courage to help out a struggling mom."

Young Living Essential Oils are changing the world. If you'd like more information about the newest additions (including the new Freedom Kits) to the 180+ essential oils we carry, please visit www.AWellLivedLife.Net & go to the Products section or comment below. 

Sunday, June 15, 2014


So, we've still got one more week before summer officially started, but I've already got summer on my mind! The nice people at Santa Cruz Organic® generously gave me a sample of their organic lemonade & organic mango lemonade to try. If you know me, I'm kind of stickler for organic stuff. I do my best to have my family use as many organic foods, beverages & products as possible. My kids loved the original lemonade & the mango lemonade was super yummy too. I can imagine a hot summer day with some mango lemonade and vodka being a really refreshing drink! But I can also imagine the kids really enjoying a cold glass of lemonade too. ;) When Santa Cruz Organic® offered to do a giveaway for my readers so they could try these delicious, yummy organic drinks, I said yes! Free stuff is another thing I love!

Here's some information about the products:

Summer fun pairs perfectly with these lemonades: enjoy them at picnics, backyard barbecues or make them the star of your favorite recipe.

Santa Cruz Organic® Lemonades and Limeades are made with Certified USDA Organic fruit juice and are a great addition to any summer activity. 

·         No artificial preservatives or ingredients
·         Certified USDA Organic
·         Flavors include Lemonade, Strawberry Lemonade, Raspberry Lemonade, Peach Lemonade, Mango Lemonade, Cherry Lemonade and Limeade 
Reader Giveaway:
Santa Cruz Organic® wants to give my readers a fun way to celebrate summer, so they’re offering a giveaway! Two (2) randomly selected winners (U.S. only, please) will receive two Santa Cruz Organic® Lemonade Beverages!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Young Living Essential Oils made it on the Today Show

The Cleveland Clinic was featured on the Today Show for using alternative medicine--specifically herbal remedies--to help their patients. Young Living oils made a cameo! The hospital uses our oils regularly & are just one of many hospitals around the US that use our oils. You'll hear Dr. Oz talk about the benefits of herbs--especially their oils--and he highlights sage and rosemary as oils that help with cognitive functioning. He also talks about being cautious because many "natural" products out there aren't good quality. Young Living makes the cut and is used by so many hospitals because they are unadulterated, PURE, 100% natural, therapeutically effective oils! 

Watch the clip by clicking HERE

Here's a list of some of the hospitals in the United States that are using Young Living essential oils:

Did you just read what the Cleveland Clinic has been using Young Living oils for in the picture above?!? "Gout, neuropathy, carpel tunnel, sinusitus, headaches, abdominal pain, kidney stone pain, neuralgia, tennis elbow, arthritis, back pain, leg cramps, post-op hip & knee pain & whatever else comes our way." What?!? Did you know that essential oils could help with so many issues? I certainly didn't until I started using Young Living oils!

Young Living has been around for 20 years. They are really pioneers of the essential oil business. Gary Young, the founder, was trained by some of the best essential oil developers in Europe and has continually refined the technique. They are the only essential company that owns their own farms or partners with farms willing to live up to the high standards of Young Living. The Seed to Seal guarantee is what helped me choose Young Living over doTerra and the other brands. After being able to go to their partner farm in Hawaii where Royal Sandalwood is being produced, I was even more impressed with their process! The farm land is growing only local plants on the farm--there are NO foreign plants on the several thousand acre farm. They do things by hand--digging the holes to plant the trees, tubing the sprouts, picking the seeds, etc. Everything was meticulously handled throughout the process. They honor the earth and the process. It really was impressive!

Many other essential oil companies will claim they have certain ratings or labeling that make them higher quality. Go to their farms to see how things are handled. Oh wait, you can't, because no other essential oil company owns their own farms & allows volunteers to come work on their farms. Young Living has farms all around the world--Somalia, Oman, Ecuador and many throughout the US. I am going to go visit the farm in Utah in June, the farm in Idaho in July & the farm in Ecuador in November. How many essential oil companies allow you to do that? ONLY Young Living!

If you're not impressed by now...or at least questioning the essential oil brand you're currently using, I'm not sure why not!

This is the amazing deal that you can get for yourself or for the special Mom in your life (reminder: Mother's Day is May 11th!):

What are YOU waiting for? 

Contact Carol for more information by visiting her website at www.AWellLivedLife.Net. You can learn more about the Young Living product line by going to her website's Products page and clicking on the Young Living link. You can also learn more at or joining Carol's team's essential oils educational Facebook group. Contact her for more information.

#lemondropper #youngliving

Sunday, March 30, 2014

I'm so impressed!

I just love to hear success stories about what Young Living essential oils are doing for my friends & family--it really makes my day to know that I'm part of a company that is helping so many people.

Here is just one story from a friend's dad suffering from rheumatoid arthritis:

That is just 6 days of using Copaiba, Panaway & Frankincense topically daily & drinking 2 oz of Ningxia Red daily. WOW!

I'll be sharing more success stories about fibromyalgia, ADHD, autism, weight loss and more! Who knew that essential oils could help with so many issues! I certainly didn't before I started my oil journey!

We've been able to completely re-do our medicine cabinet with essential oils:

This whole essential oils thing has become so huge that I've created a Facebook group for people that are interested in learning more about oils. It's called Apothecary Society because we are all, in our way, our own modern apothecaries trying to navigate our way through health issues naturally with the least amount of side effects & chemicals. This Facebook group is for people to learn more about oils, to ask questions, to read success stories--and the cool thing is--there's absolutely NO sales talk in it! So, you can just join it & learn. You can leave it at any point too. If you're interested in joining it, friend me at Apothecary Carol and let me know you'd like to be added to the group. You'll learn a lot in a no-pressure environment.

This is the amazing kit that I started with. It comes with so many oils for you to try for so many different issues:
It comes with 11 oils (5 mL size), some samples, but the best part is, you'll also get a FREE diffuser! That thing is worth $98 (retail)! I didn't think I'd use all of the oils in this kit. I bought it mainly for the thieves oil & the diffuser because I wanted to be prepared for the cold & flu season. (Did I tell you that diffusing thieves kills 99.98% of the airborne bacteria & viruses?). But, let me tell you, I've used all of the oils & had to buy more because I love them so much. Stress Away & Peace & Calming--every mom's must-have oils! Valor--can you say no snoring? no clenched jaw at night? deeper sleep than I can ever remember having? Yes, please! Panaway--no sore muscles or back aches. Frankincense & lavender--can you say--softest skin ever? And the allergy trio--lavender, lemon & peppermint--love it!  I could go on & on, but I won't. :) 

Go to www.AWellLivedLife.Net to the Products section for more information about Young Living Essential Oils.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Katrina's Birth Story (AKA "Our Unplanned Homebirth" or "HypnoBirthing Really Works!"

Alanna & Mike took my Tuesday night HypnoBirthing classes in Encinitas (North County San Diego, CA) to prepare for their second birth. They had taken another birthing class for their first birth, but weren't happy with the outcome and decided that they wanted to learn more to be even more prepared for their second birth.

Katrina Eve Peters

Alanna's story:

On Monday and Tuesday (Feb 10 & 11) I started having some mild cramping sensations in my lower abdomen, almost like pre-menstrual cramps. They were infrequent and mainly only started in the afternoon through evening and went away by morning. They weren't uncomfortable at all but I practiced my slow breathing through them just to start preparing for labor, which I assumed was probably a few days away.
On Tuesday (11th) the cramping was becoming a little more intense and by that night I figured we were probably getting close to the start of labor. I researched prodromal labor (false labor), sat on my birth ball for a bit and drank some red raspberry leaf tea in hopes that my cramping would turn into labor surges rather than disappear again in the morning. I was convinced that this was going to drag out over several days.
Sometime between midnight and 1:00 AM on Wednesday morning (12th) I woke up with what I could tell were real uterine surges. I could actually feel everything tightening up and starting to push my baby down. I started listening to my Rainbow Relaxation and HypnoBirthing music playlist on my headphones and slowly breathed through each surge. Mike had fallen asleep in Sammy's room so he had no idea anything was going on. I figured I'd have a long time to go so I didn't want to wake him and bother him yet. One of us might as well get a good night's sleep! Around 3:30 AM I decided I should probably start timing the surges just to be sure that we didn't need to get ready for the hospital yet. I timed them for about an hour but they were all over the place - no rhythm or pattern to them at all. I went back to bed and continued my breathing and relaxation. Around 5:30 AM I noticed Mike was back in our bed and he realized that I was having real contractions. I assured him that nothing serious was happening yet and that we'd see if everything slowed down again in the morning as they had the two days before.
Around 7:30 AM on Wednesday 912th) I got up for the day. I had a cup of coffee, sat at my computer, and took care of some essential business, just in case. I let our friends know that there was a good chance we'd need them to watch Sammy that day. Then I hopped in the bathtub around 8:00 AM where I soaked for about an hour while listening to a podcast about "How to Know if You are in Real Labor" (I decided that it was still practice labor since my surges were still irregular) and then listened to my relaxation music. Getting in the tub slowed down my contractions for a while but eventually they became pretty consistently 5-7 minutes apart.
Mike was still home that morning and was getting Sammy ready for the day while preparing to go out and run some errands. I figured that since my surges were still pretty far apart (real labor would start when they were 4 minutes apart) he had plenty of time to go out and do some things before we had to go to the hospital. I was planning to call my aunt, who was going to be our birth companion at the hospital, and let her know that we would most likely be going to the hospital that afternoon. 
I sat up in the tub and started draining the water when a really strong surge hit me. I breathed through it and continued my process of getting dried and dressed. I did my best to get my hospital bag ready but from that point on, I just kept having surge after surge. I couldn't even properly brush my teeth because they were coming so fast. I started timing them and realized they were consistently 2 minutes apart and about 1 minute each. I was afraid I wasn't going to have time to track them for an hour to see if they fit the 2-1-1 timeframe! It was at this point I realized there was probably no way in hell we were making the 45-60 minute drive to Balboa Hospital down in San Diego.
While Mike made me some eggs for breakfast (so I'd have energy for the day ahead), I sat in my chair and kept breathing through the surges and relaxing. I got about two bites of my eggs and then had another surge. That one was SO intense that I suddenly had a moment of panic and felt like I couldn't take it anymore. I yelled to Mike that I didn't think I could handle this anymore. He came in the room, told me to calm down and relax. (While he was seriously concerned that I was already losing it so early into the labor process!) I relaxed for a minute until the next surge hit. This time I yelled again that I didn't know how long I could do this. 
All of a sudden I felt the urge to push. I thought that it was still way early in my labor so I figured I must just have to poop. I rushed past Mike into the bathroom and told him so. He said "no, I don't think you do" but figured that this pressure was just a part of labor. I sat down on the toilet and started pushing and instantly realized that it was NOT poop baby was ready to be born. Mike checked and at first didn't feel anything, but then I breathed down a little bit and he could feel her crowning. He made me scoot forward so he could see (and catch!) the baby. He handled it so calmly that it was easy for me to get back to my relaxed state. I remembered that I wasn't supposed to "push" and I just needed to bear down a bit with my breath whenever I had a surge. This is what I did, and I think it took about 4-5 breaths before my baby was fully born at 9:35 AM. She was still in her bag of waters, and thankfully we had seen this in a birthing video recently so Mike wasn't freaked out. He knew it was totally fine and once she came out he just broke it open and handed me our baby.
While I held her, Mike called 911 to ask for assistance. The EMT's showed up and helped transfer us to the hospital to deliver the placenta and make sure we were okay. It was pretty crazy and exciting! Meanwhile, Sammy was in the bathtub in the other bathroom, completely oblivious that her sister was being born. After the event, Mike went to get her so she could see her sister before we transferred to the hospital.

Mike’s story:

First let me say “I am the man”! Whoo. That aside, I went to sleep the night before labor with my daughter Sam aound 11, woke up around 2 and crawled into our bed. Alanna was awake and said she was feeling some tremors and I asked if we should get the birthing party started. She said the contractions weren't that strong or consistent yet so I went to sleep. I woke around 7:30 and Alanna was in the rocker recliner in the baby’s room covered in a blanket with her eyes closed and headphones on. She looked asleep. I knew that was part of the hypno-birthing deal so I took a pic when she wasn’t looking and went to my daily routine. After some coffee and some email checking I asked Alanna if she thought I should stay home from work. She said it wasn’t necessary but it would be nice to have someone around the house to help with Sam while she was in the pre-labor stage. While Alanna took a bath it slowly crept into my mind that this was going to be the day so I cleaned, had breakfast with Sam and then put her in the tub. When Alanna got out of the tub she said her contractions were coming hard and fast. I mentioned that maybe they slowed in the tub and now her body is catching up to make up for lost momentum. She agreed and I made some her eggs and an english muffin. 

Sitting in the baby chair again she started eating her breakfast. I went to the kitchen to clean up and I heard her scream, “Miiiiike, I don’t think I can do this anymore!”. I thought Whaaat? We didn’t even get to the hospital yet! Why did we take hypo-birthing lessons for the past month and a half if we’re going to just jump to freak out mode off the bat? I went into her room and reassured her and did some light massage on her legs. Then the next contraction came. She said “I have to poop” and she pushed me out of the way and started walking towards the bathroom. I said “You know you don’t need to poop”. My thinking was based on an anecdote provided by our birthing teacher. Wrong! We went into the bathroom and she said “I think the baby is coming. I feel like I have to push.” I said “The baby’s not coming”. So I told her to lean back and I looked. As I inspected I started to say “See, nothing is coming… Oh yea there’s something there”. I felt to see what it was and since it was so close to crowning I waited to see what it was. At first I thought it was just the bag of water that was coming out on it’s own before the birth actually started. Never saw that before but hey she wasn’t about to have a baby in the bathroom right? Then as I watched I saw hair under the shiny sack. Oh shit! I told her “Okay, were having a baby”. She started to tense and I reassured her that we can do this together. The baby was coming fast with every contraction so I grabbed my shower towel off the wall behind me and got my head together for the next couple rounds of contractions. I held Alanna’s butt up as she leaned back as to not drop the baby in the toilet. After 3-4 contractions the head came out. She was still in the bag of water. I think if I hadn’t seen this in one of the birthing movies we saw I would have freaked out. I knew she was still attached by the cord and that’s what was important, she didn’t need to breathe yet. Another couple of surges and she was out near her shoulders. I then used my finger nails to pop the bag between her head and shoulder. POP! Like a balloon. Another 2 contractions and out she came. She was as beautiful as a new born baby could be. Alanna said “Give her to me” so I did. We got the cord from around her neck and she sneezed and breathed in a couple times. 

I didn’t know what exactly to do at that point. I knew I should cut the cord after it stopped pulsing but I was kind of bewildered so I thought I’d call the pros. I then called 911 and they sent the EMT’s. While waiting for them we got Alanna's shirt off so the baby was skin to skin and the 911 person instructed me to tie a shoe lace around the umbilical cord and knot it. This is where my brain should have thought “I can do this, I saw Crab Man do this on My Name is Earl with some coupon scissors and some chip clips”, but I just followed the person's directions instead. The EMT’s showed up and I heard “Daddy, What’s going on?”, oh man Sammy is still in the tub. I told her to get out and dry herself while I did finally get the chance to cut the cord. I have a crappy iPhone pic that no one will see because my wife is buck naked in the shot, but I do have it. I got Sam dressed and told her she gets to see her baby sister. She looked dumbfounded. I don’t assume to know what a 3 1/2 year old is thinking when she hears that but it seemed to be surprise and excitement. I made room in our bedroom, now with 5 guys and a gurney and Sam got to see her baby sister. She said  “Ooohh, she’s so cute!”. As they moved Alanna and the baby together to the gurney Sam kept saying “Hi baby” and “She’s so cute” and making a happy little squealing sounds. They took Alanna and the now pinker Katrina to the Ambulance, we gave them Alanna’s hospital bag and they were off. Sammy and I followed to the not planned Tri-City hospital.

Alanna was supposed to birth at Balboa hospital in Downtown San Diego. Why? It was free that’s why. But like Alanna said “She wasn’t getting to the car let alone a hospital 45 minutes away”. So we ended up at the Tri-City hospital 5 minutes away. The hospital was not a good experience. Unknown to me while asking for directions to the birth area I met our doctor on the way in and told her our story. Once to the front desk of the baby ward they told me Sam can’t be there because of flu season. Grrrr. 15 min later our friend Joy came and got Sam and took her home for the evening to have her first sleepover with her best friend Audrey. After not seeing my wife or baby for about 45 minutes I finally made it back to the room where Alanna and Kat were. I was super relieved that they were both healthy and happy. Alanna still didn’t birth the placenta yet and the doctor was somewhere else. The nurses wouldn’t let Alanna try to push it out without the doctor so we waited. This is where Alanna would tell the story best but to summarize, the doctor wanted to give an IV & give Pitocin. Alanna refused both. The doctor was kind of pissed, you could tell by her body language while she explained why it was smarter to do what she wanted us to do. We knew everything was going smoothly so again Alanna refused. Alanna passed the placenta naturally by pushing a couple times. She did need to get sewn up a little since the baby came so fast out of the gate. And that was the extent of the medical involvement. Some stitches and catching the placenta. 

I do not recommend Tri-City at all to anyone. Out of the 5 nurses we had 2 that were considerate to our wants, the doctor was pushy, and the building itself… all the furniture was just destroyed, the dust on the bathroom vents and window cills were so thick you couldn’t see the actual metal. The crown jewel was a couch in the birthing room so used that the sitting surfaces were discolored about 10 shades darker than the sides of it. The best thing about Tri-City was the exit door.

We’re now happy and healthy and doing what we do, but now with a new Kat. The experience of helping birth my daughter was one of the best things that ever happened to me. I tried to liken it to something else I’ve done before. It’s pretty impossible, I was excited yet super relaxed, anxious and focused. It was awesome. While our culture doesn’t support it and most dudes would pass, I think dads should have the opportunity to receive their baby and bring them into this world. I would do it again in a second.

Alanna's story:
To make the rest of the story short, everything went fine - baby Katrina and I are both perfectly fine and healthy (even after me being GBS+ and not getting any antibiotics!) with no complications whatsoever. I was a little annoyed that they kept trying to push an IV and medications even after I had a 100% natural home birth, but we just kept refusing everything, to the doctor's annoyance. Like Mike said, the hospital experience was not good at all. If I were to have another birth (which I am NOT planning!) I would totally do it all at home. The labor and birth at home were AMAZING and I can only imagine how much more peaceful and relaxing it would have been to just finish up everything else with a midwife at home. I have no regrets though - this birth experience was absolutely amazing. I will never forget any minute of it!

Side Note: I highly recommend HypnoBirthing to anyone interested in a natural, peaceful birth experience. I am convinced that my labor went so smooth and easy because I was totally relaxed the entire time. My relaxation allowed each contraction to be so effective that I didn't even realize anything was really happening yet! On my contraction timer I started by noting each surge as "Mild", then gradually started marking them as "Moderate". Toward the end a couple of them brought tears to my eyes but I never really considered any of them to be painful. It wasn't until the last two surges (where I yelled out to Mike) that I considered them "Severe". It was just amazing. No words can really describe how awed and amazed I am about this experience. I can hardly believe it, but I did it!

Not sleeping...just totally relaxed.
Not sleeping...just totally relaxed.

From 5-7 minutes apart to 2 minutes apart!
From 5-7 minutes apart to 2 minutes apart!

WOW! Congratulations Alanna & Mike! I'm thrilled to hear that things went so well that you didn't even make it to the hospital...and yet, were still really prepared to handle anything that came your way! Mom, baby, mom's body (& dad) knew exactly what to do once the body is able to relax! So excited for you--thank you for sharing your story!

If you are interested in taking Carol Yeh-Garner's HypnoBirthing classes, please visit her website at www.AWellLivedLife.Net. If her classes do not fit your schedule, feel free to contact her for other local practitioners. If you're outside of the San Diego area, you can visit to find a practitioner near you.