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When my husband and I found out we were going to have a baby, we were utterly shocked and absolutely overjoyed. As our way of life had already been a holistically minded one for such a long time, we already knew we wanted to work with a birth center. Although there are many in birth centers in the area, Labor of Love was the only one that felt like home and the only one in which ALL of the midwives made us feel comfortable and special. They were supportive and knowledgeable throughout the entire process and accommodated me without hesitation ever single time I asked for them to use the fetoscope instead of the doppler to measure the baby’s heart rate (which I know is kind of a pain in the ass). And, when the day came that my water finally broke and baby was on the way, they helped me rock my natural birth in which I gave birth to a healthy 8.3 lb baby boy. Michelle, my midwife, even told me that the birth of my son was one of the most beautiful she’d ever witnessed (what a huge compliment)! Working with the team at Labor of Love gave us the best natural birth experience we could have possibly asked for. I’m so grateful to have found them and will without a doubt be back here when we have baby number two 🙂
I had the most wonderful experience with Labor of Love throughout my pregnancy and delivery of my baby girl. I had two deliveries at a hospital but having my third and last at Labor of Love was beyond amazing. The midwives are very highly trained. All of the staff were very caring, personable providing amazing expertise in helping me to prepare for natural labor and easing any nervousness leading up to my delivery. I wanted a different experience than I had with my last delivery feeling quite stigmatized being labeled “advanced maternal age” and quite honestly leaving me more anxious leading up to my delivery. While they did recognize my age and did an extensive history of each birth I never felt labeled. I was handled with expertise care throughout my entire pregnancy. I loved the freedom to walk out my contractions until my water birth and can’t even begin to put together words with how amazing my water birth experience was. I have such an upmost respect and appreciation for my midwives.
I delivered my baby boy here on 4/10/17 and what an amazing experience it was. Being a first time mom I was nervous about the whole labor and delivery process but I knew I wanted it to be as natural and controlled as possible so that I could bring my baby into a peaceful place. The midwives here are amazing and they really helped me through my labor with such compassion and gentleness, I really don’t know what I would have done without them. Big thanks to Karla, Alexis and Cori…you ladies rock. I will definitely be back to have baby #2.
First time mom here. Just had my little girl 2 days ago and I cannot recommend Labor of Love enough! Everyone is so wonderful, friendly, and attentive. I truly feel like they are a part of my little family now.
I had my first child here in February and my water birth was absolutely amazing and unforgettable. My labor was pretty quick and the girls (Emily and Cori) were so encouraging and supportive throughout my labor. It made things so much more enjoyable and less stressful. After delivery, they discovered I had an extensive tear which resulted in a transfer to the hospital for surgery, but I couldn’t have been happier with my experience with Labor of Love. They took such good care of me, and were in constant communication with me while I was in the hospital, and Emily came to my house a few times to check on me and even brought some vitamins from the birth center to help increase my iron levels. All my prenatal appointments were extremely thorough and I always felt like all my concerns were addressed each time. My experience was always so personal, I never felt like a number the way I did when I had my first couple appointments at an OB, which drove me to find a place more personal. If I have any more children in the future, I would absolutely come back to give birth at Labor of Love. The staff is absolutely wonderful and welcoming and feels like family. I knew I wanted a personal experience and didn’t want to give birth in a hospital. Although I went there after delivery, I am grateful I was able to have the water birth I wanted. Words can’t express how appreciative I am to everyone there for giving me a wonderful pregnancy and birthing experience that I will never forget!
Amazing first time-in-labor experience! The midwives and their assistants are more than caring and helpful. They made me feel like I was at home, very loving, patient, and on top of things when I felt like I was dying
Love the whole experience. All the midwives were wonderful and we had a great time at every one of our visits and on the big day. I miss seeing you guys!
There are not enough words to write on the amount of LOVE & CARE received at Labor of Love. I’ve never felt so at ease with something I viewed as “scary” (being a first time mom.) My appointments were never rushed, every question I had was always answered with thoughtfulness & knowledge and everyone there truly cared about me and my baby.
All the midwives were loving examples of what the birth process should really look like. I had to deliver at the hospital unfortunately since our baby girl would not budge from me, but even thru that heartbreak (and the days leading up to the possibility of going to the hospital), each one of them tried their hardest. They even sent a student midwife to comfort me at the hospital before induction, and her presence was priceless.
Words can’t explain how awesome labor of love was to our family, this was my second pregnancy and first pregnancy at a birth center and my labor and delivery was perfect the staff was so helpful. During my time spent there I learned so much about labor and delivery and what to expect I definitely felt prepared. The staff truly love what they do and they are a blessing.
I had a wonderful experience throughout my pregnancy and delivery at Labor of Love. The entire staff is warm, welcoming, and always made me feel well cared for. The midwives spent adequate time with me during each appointment to make sure all my questions were answered – as a first time Mommy, I had lots! The birthing classes are highly informative and I found the breastfeeding class to be super helpful once my little one arrived – so far 6 months EBF and going strong! When it came time for my little girl to arrive, I had a beautiful water birth experience. Cory, Michelle, and Emily all helped me deliver. I’m so grateful for the positive experience I had and to have the option of an out of hospital delivery. I highly recommend Labor of Love for women seeking a natural birth.
I was a very late transfer into Labor of Love in the middle of my 33rd week and last week they helped me deliver my beautiful baby boy! I cannot say enough good things about the women at Labor of Love and the experience I had. Having been put trough the system with the doctors and hospital up to the 33rd week, the difference between the two is exponential. Being a part of the birth center family, I felt right at home like my best friends were the ones coaching me through the most intense and gratifying period of my life. If you have any hesitation about a hospital birth or if you are just curious about natural birth, please do yourself a favor and contact these incredible midwives to learn more about how you can take control of this precious life moment.
I had my second daughter at Labor of Love. I moved to the Tampa area when I was 18 weeks pregnant, and I already knew I wanted to do a birth center birth, since I had used a midwife for my first pregnancy. I visited three midwives in the area and chose LOL for their personal care. Jen got me an appointment the same week that I called since I was so far along in my pregnancy. She gave me a personal tour and treated me with such respect and care that I was sold before I even met the midwives. I LOVE the office staff, nurses and midwives. My 2 YO daughter went to almost every clinic visit with me and looked forward to hearing her sister’s heartbeat and measuring my belly. I had some stressful experiences with my general practitioner who I had to simultaneously visit due to a thyroid prescription, but I was able to find peace and reassurance through talking to Karla on the phone about it.
My actual labor was so fast! I was four days late, woke up with contractions at 1:30am. Bea was on call, and she and my doula were already at the birth center because another LOL mom had just given birth. I arrived at the center at 4:00am and delivered my daughter in the birthing tub at 4:43am. My toddler came with us and watched the whole thing (totally not traumatized, by the way). My husband videoed and watched my daughter while my doula, Bea, and Nicole helped me through the delivery.
Afterwards, my baby needed oxygen, which was a little scary for me, but everyone was very calm and professional. She ended up being just fine, but they recommended calling the chiropractor, which I was totally fine with, so my baby got her first chiropractic adjustment only a few hours old. The post-partum care was great. I called Bea a few times after I got home because my baby’s temperature was a little high. I had a harder recovery than with my first baby because I had some tissue retained inside me, which came out a week after my delivery (which freaked me out). The on-call midiwife was Emily then, and she talked me through and checked on me afterwards.
The saddest day is the 6-week post partum appointment, because it means the whole experience is over. If I have another baby, I’m DEFINITELY choosing Labor of Love. I cannot say enough wonderful things about the staff and the office, which is so peaceful. Being new in the area, I also got recommendations for my pediatrician through LOL. I also loved the new parent refresher class taught by Melly and took advantage of the CPR class they offered. LOL is a wonderful practice!!! Just writing this makes me want to have another baby, but not yet. 🙂
It’s been over a year since I had my first baby at LOL, but they are so awesome and I recommend them all the time!! I was only 2cm when I arrived but since I lived about an hour from the center, Bea told me and my fiancé we could hang out in the suite. She also offered to send my family away for awhile which was amazing for me because they were putting too much stress on me and she could tell, and they would take it a lot better coming from the midwife versus me. After they left, it didn’t take me long to progress. I arrived at LOL around 1pm and my son was born at 7:13pm. I had a 4th degree perineal tear that they weren’t able to repair at the center so they said I had to go to the hospital but there was no rush, they let me lay in bed, eat some food, helped with breastfeeding, and after about two hours helped me get in the car so my sister could drive me to the hospital. The labor and birth was absolutely amazing (even through all the pain) and the midwives were so encouraging when I kept telling them “I just can’t do it”. Bea was so encouraging during the pushing phase which gave me a boost of energy and I thought “Yeah, I got this”. All of the staff are just phenomenal and I can’t wait to do it again with them!
I can’t believe it has been nearly a year since I gave birth to my beautiful little girl Harper! I chose Labor of Love because of the way it made me feel the minute I walked through the door. It is so warm and inviting. There was no intense energy, just a calm welcoming feel. I had started out with an OB group based in St. Joes and was miserable. I felt I was just a number and didn’t get the individual care I was looking for. I actually felt more nervous and anxious leaving my appointments than before I went in. As a first time mom that is the last way you want to feel. So we transferred to Labor of Love immediately after the initial orientation. I was able to get great one-on-one time with all the midwives throughout the prenatal visits which allowed me to feel comfortable with whomever would be on call when the time came. In the end Bea was my midwife and I was grateful to have her. Things didn’t quite go as I planned with minor complications throughout the labor, but there was never a time that I felt scared or unsure because I trusted everything Bea and Karla were suggesting. Here’s what happened in a very shortened version. First off, much to my surprise, my body had an interesting reaction to the labor pains which honestly blindsided me and that was to purge everything that entered my body. I could barely even handle swallowing water without vomiting so I went on an IV full of fluids to keep my body hydrated and strong. I nearly went through 2 bags! Next Harper seemed to be getting stuck on the right side of my pelvic bone. As time moved on and my dilation slowed, Bea suggested bringing in a chiropractor to adjust me and see if that would help shift the baby to the center. It was amazing and worked! Harper shifted and you could literally see my stomach become more aligned. We had to do one more adjustment after Harper descended a little more because she moved her body back in that area. Alexa was so great and calm throughout the entire adjustment. She ended up staying until Harper was born and adjusted her too (which was another incredible story). Back to the labor, I had planned a water birth and wow what a difference sitting in the tub makes. It was like the pain was cut in half! Unfortunately, as things were coming down to the wire another bump in the road… My cervix was not opening all the way on one side. Once again, Bea explained the situation and that we would have to move out of the tub and finish the delivery in one of the rooms. Both she and Karla were so supportive and calming as clearly by this point my nerves were getting the best of me. They gave the reassurance I needed to finish the job. And this is where I praise the staff of Labor of Love the upmost. I know if I were in any other place, I would’ve been thrown every scare tactic out there and forced into interventions I was not comfortable with. Instead, Bea allowed me to stay in control of my labor. She and the rest of the staff coached me every step of the way which kept me feeling self-assured and confident in both myself and my body. For this reason alone I recommend LOL to everyone I know. Every mom should feel that in control of her labor. So in the end despite things not going “as planned” it all turned out to be a really wonderful and positive experience. I absolutely would go back to have another baby there, no doubt in my mind. Thank you to all the staff and hopefully I will see you in the future for baby #2? 🙂
I knew years before I got pregnant that I wanted something different than the traditional hospital birth. Instinctively I knew there had to be another way, so when an old friend of mine recommended Labor of Love I immediately called to set up a tour. My boyfriend and I fell in love with the peaceful, home like atmosphere. The midwives calmed our nerves and eased any fears we may have had at our prenatal visits.
When the big day finally arrived, Bea was the lucky lady on call. My labor started abruptly at 3 am after 5 hours of leaking a little fluid and a few mild, here and there contractions. Never was I so thankful for the center being only 2 miles away as I was that night. I couldn’t tolerate the contractions in any other position than standing up. I was prepared for the long haul when we arrived but Bea had good news to share when she checked me. I was already at 7 cm! I begged her to fill the tub, I was hoping for a water birth. That was the longest I’ve ever waited for a tub to fill! Once I got in I could feel every muscle relax. The contractions still came with the same intensity as before, but I could get out of the way and let them work more effectively. It felt like I was in the tub no more than 5 minutes before I felt the urge to push. Emily and Bea very lovingly encouraged me to listen to my body and push if I needed to. 45 minutes later I gave birth to my 8 pound 5 oz son James Lucas Severus. It was the most peaceful, empowering, liberating experience I’ve ever had. If we had do it all over again we wouldn’t change a thing. If/when we have another baby, we’ll be calling LOL. Thank you all for helping make the birth of our son the most wonderful experience of our lives to date.
My husband was relocated from Puerto Rico to Tampa when I was 7 months pregnant. I was anxiously looking for a pro natural birth OBGYN when a mom from The Mom Cave Facebook group suggested Labor of Love and shared with me her testimonial. I went to LOL’s website, read it all, and definitely felt in love with the idea. Then, I contacted Jen and she helped through transferring paperwork. LOL midwives and staff are so loving and caring. They carefully listened to me (speaking in my weird accent!! Haha!), answered all my questions (actually, I showed Andrea a picture of my mucus plug because I was not sure what was that. Haha!), explained to me everything, and brought me practical solutions when needed. I remember when close to my due date, Kristi asked me if I had a preference for a midwife to deliver my baby and in that moment I realized they all three are so wonderful that I would be totally fine with any of them. So, I said no preference. The thing is, in one way or another, all three were in my birth! Haha! (Michelle: pre-labor; Andrea: labor and birth; Bea: post-birth) My birth was a non conventional water birth (out of the rule!) and maybe a tough one, but the LOL team were just the best! Amazing! I certainly know they are well prepared professionals capable to handle any situation or emergency in an effective way. If you asked me if I would do it again with LOL, I definitely say YES!!!
After a very complicated delivery with my first child, which included pitocin, an epidural, and numerous doctors trying to perform what they thought was best without even consulting with me. I knew when I became pregnant again that I wanted to be more in control. I wanted to atleast have a doctor/ midwife who would Listen to me and reassure me that the desicions I decided to make would be honored every step of the way —and I found that at Labor of Love. Michelle delivered my son Carter and she was heaven sent. Michelle motivated me and encouraged me. Ladies, I cried with pain…sometimes hysterically. I beat the wall and on numerous occasions asked her and my fiance why I had chosen this route. But with every doubt that that entered my mind, Michelle found a way to bring me back to sanity. She coached me through pushing and made me feel like I was born to do this. She kept me mentally strong.
Going into this, I never expected it to be easy. And I can’t lie and say that it was, but it was everything I hoped it to be and nothing Less. I wanted to bring my child into this world with what I deemed ” the way it was intented to be”.
Ps. It’s been only two weeks and Im actually looking forward to doing this again (just give me a couple years). Lol.
This place and these people are amazing. They answered every question, worked with my financial situation and most importantly…Listened. From christy at the front desk to Jen in the office to the lab assists. This is a group of special people doing amazing things. 🙂
We had a wonderful experience at Labor of Love. The entire staff really took the time to get to know us and establish a personal relationship with us, which enabled them to provide us with support tailored to our needs.
Labor of Love was an incredible experience for my husband and I. We transferred care from a traditional OB/GYN office. Dissatisfied with dealing with different OBs who had no clue who I was every visit and not feeling like our birth plan was being respected, we were hoping for a natural, drug free birthing experience. Our friends who had had their baby at Labor of Love recommended them to us. At first we were slightly hesitant to take the plunge, but once we were deemed low risk and got to know the staff, we knew it was the right choice for us. From the receptionist to the midwives, every single staff member was warm, helpful, and answered every question we had. There was not one person there that we felt was not taking care of our every need. At OB/GYN offices, we always had the feeling we were being kicked out quickly so they could tend to the next patient. We NEVER felt that way here, every single visit we had (MANY) questions and they always answered every one and more. They provided classes which were extremely informational prior to my labor, and when labor came, we felt prepared. The labor and delivery was very hard, as expected. The shower and the water tub worked MIRACLES for me!!! Thank God I didn’t have to labor on my back, strapped in a hospital bed under harsh bright lights! My husband was with me the whole time, even in the tub, which was essential to me. Thanks to Andrea and her excellent coaching (and ability to keep me calm!!), we made it through and the birth of our baby boy was exactly the way we wanted it to be. We can’t say enough good things about this little haven and will be recommending them often. Thank you everyone at Labor of Love for making the birth of our first child unforgettable!
I got out of bed to go to the restroom at 11:30 pm on Monday January 28, 2013 (my due date) and my water broke. It wasn’t a huge gush, so I waited a minute or two to make sure. I called to Brian from the bathroom that my water broke. He said “you are joking.” I said I was pretty sure it broke. He said “this baby would want to come in the middle of the night!” I called Labor of Love to find out that Andrea was on call. I spoke to her and she was at the home birth of a personal friend, so Michelle was going to be meeting me at the birth center. This made me really happy because Michelle had been my favorite midwife, and I had only met with her 3 times during my pregnancy, including earlier that day.
We agreed to meet at the birth center at midnight. Brian and I beat Michelle there. She apologized to us for being in her pajamas and said she would change once we were all set up inside. I thought that was hilarious because we, of course, did not care at all what she was wearing. I got checked out and they confirmed that I was 5 cm. My mom, sister Subrina, mother in law and my best friend Amber had all arrived by that point and we were instructed to pretty much do whatever we wanted to keep me comfortable and to make sure that I kept drinking plenty of fluids. They asked me if I wanted to get in the tub and said to let them know in advance because it takes about 20 minutes to fill it up. They suggested that I wait at least a little while because they didn’t want my labor to stall.
I sat in the living room area with my family just bouncing on a birth ball and stopping and leaning over on the couch through contractions. It didn’t take long for the contractions to get more intense and it because difficult for me to hold myself up on the ball, so I asked to get in the tub. Suddenly, I didn’t feel like sitting on that ball for another second, so I just got up which made me have to pee. So Brian and I went into the bathroom and decided it was time for me to get in the tub. By that time, it was around 1:15 and I’m going to guess I was about 7 cm (I don’t know for sure, because they didn’t check me again until I started pushing, but that is my guess based on intensity)
The tub was really very nice. It did not really dull the pain like I was hoping, but allowing my arms and legs to float between contractions was surprisingly relaxing for me. I just lie there in the tub for a long time. Brian had a basin of cold water and wash cloths that he kept reapplying to my head and chest so that I wouldn’t get too hot. I had my eyes closed the entire time, so I didn’t actually know what time it was, but according to the paperwork it was 2:40 AM when I started pushing, kind of involuntarily. At that point, Brian changed his clothes and got into the tub with me. Everything felt very intense at that point. I was making a lot of noise to get through contractions, which is NOT typical for me. My hands were weirdly cramping up and my mom and Brian were massaging them for me to try and get me to relax some. After I had been pushing for awhile and his head was still not visible I started to think “what the heck is happening??! He is NEVER coming out!!” My mom told me later that she was sure that he would be born by 3:00 and when he wasn’t she started to thinking something was maybe wrong.
Brian sat on the seat in the tub and I leaned up against him and pushed for what seemed like forever. He continued to tell me to push, that I could do it and kept rubbing my arms and my belly and kept rewetting the cold wash cloths on my head and chest. After I pushed for what seemed like forever, part of Emmett’s head was finally visible. It felt MUCH bigger than Linley’s head and I had to push so much harder than I ever had to for Jackson OR Linley (And Jackson was sunny side up!) Finally he was crowning and it took another 2 or 3 pushes just to get his head out. It is a really bizarre feeling to have just a baby’s head out of your body without it immediately being followed by their body. The student midwife, Katie, checked around the neck for the cord, but it was clear. Then they told me to push and Katie tried to help get him out. He was not moving. I screamed “just pull him out!!” and they told me that Katie was trying. Michelle gave Katie another couple of seconds, asked her if she had it Katie said “no” (with tears running down her face, as Brian told me later) and Michelle took over.
She told me to flip over onto my hands and knees in the tub, which I did with some help. But that raised the baby’s head out of the water so they told me to absolutely NOT let it go back in the water. One push in that position and Michelle told me I had to get out of the tub. Brian and my mom somehow lifted me out of the tub and onto the floor. Standing there, Michelle told me to push again. I said “I can’t push!!” Everyone told me that I could. I pushed, Katie lifted up one of my legs, Brian pushed on my belly and Michelle reached in to try and grab a shoulder without breaking it. Didn’t budge. At that point, my mom had Subrina leave the room, I could hear my Mother in law just sobbing and Brian was just sitting there silently terrified. Next I had to flip over onto my back on the floor. Brian held one leg back, Katie held the other one and again, Michelle reached inside to try and pull Emmett out. I pushed and cried and screamed like I have never screamed before. Still, would not come out. Again, I had to flip over to my hands and knees and do anything possible to get this baby out. That last push had to be the absolute worst pain I had ever experienced in my life. But, this time Michelle was able to reach Emmett’s shoulder and guide him out. Sweet Emmett Timothy was finally born at 3:57 am. It is amazing how immediately the pain goes away once the baby comes out. The whole process from the time his head was out, til his body was out was only 5 minutes, but it felt like an eternity.
At this point, they laid him down on the ground and he looked pretty bad. (Thank God, I was facing the other way on my hands and knees still and could not see this, I think it would have been too much for me to take) Everyone said he looked very lifeless, but they just kept remembering that his heart beat was nice and strong the entire time. It was really only about 30 seconds before he started crying, which was the absolute best sound I had ever heard in my life. I still couldn’t see him, so I also could not see that there was a small tear in his umbilical cord that was pulsing out blood and mixing with the water on the floor making it look REALLY dramatic in there. Michelle had already told us that she was not going to cut his cord because she wanted him to get all that blood, so my mom grabbed the cord and applied enough pressure for it to stop squirting out, but still letting it pulse. They gave him 2 puffs of oxygen from a mask to help open up his lungs and then they helped me turn over and I finally got to hold him. He was SO big and so purple… his whole head was bruised from being stuck behind my pubic bone for so long. After I held him for about 5 minutes, Brian took him out to the other room so that I could deliver the placenta without an audience. Sweet Michelle got pillows and stacked them behind me and let me lie back on her to deliver the placenta so I didn’t have to get up and move and so I didn’t feel like I was laying there totally alone. At one point, Brian walked back in with Emmett and looked at me there and just started crying. It was a really difficult and emotional experience for him.
Once the placenta was out, they told me they weighed Emmett… 10 pounds 11 ounces! Oh my gosh!!! No wonder he wouldn’t come out without a fight!! I got up and got in the shower because I was pretty much just covered with blood and whatnot. I obviously had to have help cleaning myself because I was so exhausted. When I got out of the shower, Michelle had to inspect my tearing. She was really worried that I would have a third degree tear, or that my sphincter would be torn, which would require transferring me to the hospital for a surgeon to repair it. Miraculously, I just had a second degree tear. It was pretty substantial, but just second degree. Thank the Lord!! It was a pretty funny scene while they were checking me out. Michelle, Katie, and the nurse Sady were all down there inspecting things… Katie was even holding a flashlight. I kind of wished I would have taken a picture from my point of view, it was hilarious.
I did not have to be stitched up right away. They let me hold and nurse and just snuggle with my boy for over an hour before they dealt with the sutures. During the newborn exam we learned the rest of big baby’s stats. 10 pounds 11 ounces, 22 3/4 inches long, 14 3/4 inch head! Seriously, a HUGE baby. I never thought in a million years that my body could house another human that big, or that I would be physically able to get him out of my body (even with a lot of help.)
Overall, my labor was only 4.5 hours from the time my water broke until Emmett was born. It felt a lot longer!
This labor experience was much different than Jackson and Linley. It was far more intense, painful, and scary. But it was also an experience that made me really marvel at my body and really made me rely on other people (which I have never had to do in labor before, and did not expect) and tied me emotionally to everyone there, especially the midwife, Michelle, and Brian. I am so beyond happy with my decision to deliver this baby at a birth center. I fully believe that it is EXACTLY where we were supposed to be. I believe that God 100% had a hand in appointing the right people to be there to support me through the hardest night I have ever experienced. Michelle was not supposed to be there that night, but circumstances out of her control made her be the one to facilitate this birth. She took charge when she needed to, she spoke in a way that made me know that I needed to do what she said, but that did not scare me or make me feel like anything was out of control at all. She cared for me more than I would have ever expected. Katie was very gentle with me and held it together beautifully, even though I know she had to be terrified. My mom was amazing. She was crying when I was in the tub, before I was even pushing, just with sheer excitement and anticipation of Emmett’s impending arrival. But when things got serious, she did not fall apart, she jumped right in there and did anything she could to help bring my baby into the world. Brian was so much more incredible than I would have ever known had the birth been different. He sat in that tub with me (which is saying a lot considering the amount of nasty things that were floating around in there) and quietly encouraged me and gave me strength that I didn’t think that I had. He lifted me, soaking wet, with our baby’s head already delivered out of the tub and put me on the ground and was right there with me telling me that I COULD do it. I am so grateful to have had this experience. I feel so connected to him in a way that I could not have imagined before. It is truly incredible. I will never stop singing the praises of Labor of Love Birth Center or specifically of my midwife Michelle. She was seriously a rock star through the whole thing. It was such a warm and loving environment to bring my child into. I want to have another baby there because it was so amazing for me.
I’m sure there is much more that I could say, and I’m sure over time I will think of things to add to this story. Emmett is 9 days old now and I already feel like some of the details are getting fuzzy. I already am having a hard time recalling the extent of the pain that I felt, or how horrible it was to wait for him to cry, or how scared Brian looked. What I do know is, despite a birth that most people would probably call traumatic, I just think it was beautiful and amazing. I am totally overcome by emotion every time I think about it and I hope that feeling never goes away.
I was a first time mom who had a lot of fears about giving birth. My cousin recommended Labor of Love to me after she had her second baby there and had such a wonderful experience. Fom the first time I went in for a consultation, I felt like Labor of Love was going to be able to help give me the birthing experience that I wanted. I didn’t want a C-section, I didn’t want a bunch of drugs and a traumatic experience at a hospitol. I just wanted a positive experience, something less scary, somewhere I felt like I had more control and wasn’t leaving everything up to the hospitol. At every prenatal appointment we were greated by all the friendly staff and the midwives always took their time answering all of our questions and educating us to have the best pregnancy we could hope for. The labor and delivery classes we took with Meli were better than we ever expected. My husband was very hesitant about a birthing center rather than a hospitol. He was ok with it because he knew it was what I wanted. But as time went on, we went to more appointments and classes, and he learned all the precautions they take and what happens if we had to transfer, he became more at ease and comfortable with it. My baby girl was breech for a few weeks around 32-35 weeks and with the center’s recommendation of a chiropractor and some home exercises, we were able to turn her head down. When the big day finally came, it was exactly the positive experience I wanted. Granted giving birth was harder than I ever expected. But the experience was good, really good. And positive. And I don’t think there are that many women who can say that. Bea, Katie and Carla were all so supportive and helped me feel confident throughout the whole thing. I can’t thank all the staff and the center enough for helping me to have such a positive experience bringing my little girl into the world. 🙂
I chose Labor of Love because my friend had given birth there a couple times and loved her experience. Bea, Andrea, and Michelle are fantastic women who legitimately care about the well-being of both mother and baby! The midwife assistants are also so caring and personable. And, the office staff is always so helpful. I wasn’t lucky enough to deliver at the center because of complications; however, upon my transfer to the hospital, Bea kept in contact with me throughout the next couple days to see how everything was going, and was one of the first to know about the birth of my precious little girl. She made herself completely available to me, and I will always appreciate that. I was so pleased when I got to go back for a two week and six week check up at the center. Everyone was so welcoming, warm, and understanding. Andrea gave me a strong shoulder to cry on during my two week checkup and helped me understand that I had very little control over the things that happened to me. It is because of her that I was able to cope with my birthing experience at the hospital.
I wish like Hell I had been able to birth at the birthing center, but I am still so appreciative for these women and the visits at the center. I will always recommend Labor of Love to any pregnant women that will put up with me ranting about how amazing my experience was.
Also, ladies, if you need ANY help in your fight to get legislation passed to allow VBAC at birthing centers, please let me know! I would do anything to make it so women who didn’t have the best birthing experience can experience the amazingness that is Labor of Love!!
Thank you for sharing Caryn, it is good to be able to share a positive story from someone who had to transfer out of care. It shows that, even though things may not go to plan, we are still there to support you and provide good post partum care.
The legislative fight for VBAC is a long and ongoing process, we will be sure to let everyone know if/how we need input/support from our clients – thank you 🙂
We chose labor of love after a close friend gave birth there twice. She had only good things to say about it and we were very suspicious about giving birth at a birth center.. We still chose to see for ourselves and did our initial visit with Amanda. We fell in love with the place and people right away. We reserved the tub for water birth and our journey began. Every visit has become a joyful event. Every class we took, we learned everything we needed (we are first time parents). Then finally the big day arrived.. Michelle was our midwife. I was 8 cm dilated when I arrived to LOL. She filled the tub for us and I felt immediate relief when I got into it. Michelle and Karla helped me through transition and pushing (which was the hardest part!). Without the support from my husband, Michelle, and Karla- I don’t think I could have gone through with it. Their encouraging words, massages, etc were my guidance and finally we had our daughter in our arms. After the birth, we stayed there for another 4 hours. We ate, laughed, took shower.. Everything was exactly how a birth should be- not strapped to a bed and drugged- but creating unforgettable memories around positive and knowledgeable people. God willing, all our future children will come to this world at LOL.
Copied from our Face book page;
Kat – A written recommendation doesn’t do LOL justice. How about repeat business and pregnant women who SMILE!!! Best care you’ll ever receive!!!
Ana – The most amazing prenatal, birth, and postnatal care you can ask for. I love all of these women dearly and wish there were enough of them to go around for every Mom and Baby. They empowered me to have the birth I wanted.
Dawn – I’m sure I wrote one of these before, but I’ll do it again!! These ladies are AMAZING!! I had the BEST experience I ever imagined, and they made my 1st labor seem like cake =D I was so happy with how everything turned out, and now I’m back with my 2nd son due in September!!! I have even referred one of my girlfriends here as she is pregnant with her first! As long as I’m living in Florida, and as long as I bear children I will have them ALL at Labor of Love! NO QUESTION! If you want a relaxed, home-like, and friendly atmosphere this is the place. if you want a sterile, stoic space then go to a hospital…you choose 😉
Jesse – the best prenatal care you will EVER get!!! transferred to LOL at 22 weeks with my first son- both my husband and i felt completely at peace the first time we stepped in for a tour. there was no doubt in my mind that was how i wanted to experience my pregnancy and childbirth. towards the end when my blood pressure rose my midwife personally called me at home every night to check in on me. after i went to the hospital and was told by the OB i needed a c/s my midwife was calling around town for me. the offered to come support me in the hospital and to check on me. they allowed me to heal emotionally afterwards, understanding my tears after my sons birth, when no one else could understand. there is NO care like their care. i just had my second baby 2.5 hours away and after 3 provider changes, because both me and my husband never loved our care (and really, nothing compares to bea!!!!) i consulted bea often and frequently and she always was willing to help. we were contemplating making the 5 hour roundtrip drive for my care, but it just wasnt feasible- hope im back in tampa for my next baby!! its a no brainer!!!
Monica – Love these ladies!
Sarah – our first son Jaxon Waldo was born here 2011! great place and amazing staff:) An overall beautiful experience <3
Sammy - had my first now having my second baby here and i wouldnt have it any other way! awesome place with awesome people! think twice about hospitals! its NOT ur only choice!
Zuzana -Labor of Love allowed us to have a such an amazing time. The prenatal visits and education was superb and the birth of our daughter was more amazing than we could ever imagine.
My baby girl is 3 years old today and I cannot thank the staff and midwives enough! We felt safe, in-control and comfortable during the entire delivery. I still recommend them to anyone and everyone I come across.
Finally made it back to visit LOL today. To be honest, it felt like I was coming back “home”. The anticipation was killing me! (I’ve missed you guys!!!) I can’t thank you enough for all you all did for my son Chaz and I. The support and care I received with you is matchless and unforgettable. You helped not only my immediate family, but all the friends and family I tell about my experience with you. Minds are opening, questions are being asked, and better choices are being made across the board. ‘Thank you’ doesn’t cover it all, for you have given me a gift that no man can take away. However, that’s all this language has to offer. Supporting you always…much love!
I have recommended Labor of Love to several friends, and will continue to recommend them. I was very blessed to have had the opportunity to have my prenatal care done at the hands of some amazing women. I always felt incredibly comfortable and in control of my care. When I first got pregnant I went to three different OBGYN doctors. All three made me feel that my opinion didn’t matter, and treated my “condition” as a medical ailment instead of something to be celebrated. When I found Labor of Love, I jumped at the opportunity. I really appreciated the late night calls I made to several of the midwives with worries and concerns, all of which were relieved with a little advice or clear instructions to follow. Unfortunately, I didn’t have to opportunity to deliver at the birth center, because three days before I gave birth to my son I developed high blood pressure and preeclampsia. Bea attempted to induce me naturally, but my blood pressure wasn’t having it. I was transferred to the care of LOL’s consulting OBGYN. In the end my son ended up being delivered via c-section because he had an incredibly short umbilical chord. All in all, I have no regrets, only fond memories of my time with the lovely ladies at Labor of Love! 🙂
I switched to Labor of Love at 36 weeks because I was extremely unhappy with the ob/gyn practice I had been attending. At just 36 weeks they were already scheduling an induction date and told me I would be restricted to bed. I decided to find an alternative and a friend recommended Labor Of Love to me. This was definitely the best choice I could have made for me and baby as my labor was quick,smooth and not as painful as everyone always told me. Bea,Sade,and Nicole were amazing and so supportive just letting me do what I felt was right. When an hour after I arrived it was time to push, they were very hands on and thanks to Bea’s amazing training I gave birth to my daughter who was malpositioned without even a tear. I recommend Labor of Love to anyone who appreciates the beauty of natural childbirth, they will truly not regret it.
Wow – quick work Rosaly; your baby is only a few hours old and you have managed to write this lovely testimonial!!
Thank you x
Long before I was pregnant, or even trying, I knew that I wanted to have an all-natural child birth. I’ve always hated hospitals and never liked the idea of being “drugged up” while my baby was being born. Imagine my elation when I found that Labor of Love, Lutz was just 5 minutes from our house. From the very first person I spoke to, Kristi, to the assistants and my lovely midwives I felt like I was at home, or at least a very safe place. While pregnant I looked forward to every visit, for sometimes those were the days I needed most to confirm that “everything was okay, my baby’s okay”. During labor and delivery my midwife was so welcoming, so calm, I would forever love her for that!
Thank you ladies…I am so glad I found you <3
I was so happy when I found Labor of Love while pregnant with #2! They are amazing here! Everyone is very compassionate and listens to your concerns and desires. I had the most wonderful, calming water birth and am anticipating the same for #3 this summer. I can’t wait!
I couldn’t have scripted a better birth for our son. He was born peacefully and lovingly in the tub and I wouldn’t change a thing. I felt respected, safe and cared for. I would recommend LoL to anyone in a heartbeat.
THANKS FOR THE MOST AMAZING BIRTH ANY FAMILY COULD HAVE WISHED FOR!
I can’t stop thinking of my perfect labor and how lovely it was to be able to enjoy my daughter just seconds after her birth.
even though I had to be transferred to the woman’s center after the birth, I have nothing to complaint about. You guys took care of me like no other and I received the best care both at the birth center and at the hospital.
My family is very happy with the great care I had and they can’t stop talking about it with friends and family.
Thank you for becoming part of my family, I could have not had my birth any other way but surrounded with loved ones!
We had our son Eryk at Labor of Love a little over a year ago and it was the best decision I have ever made. We started with a OB and after many tears and doctors making me feel like a failure we looked into using a midwife and we would never look back!!!! The staff is wonderful and the midwives are awesome! Andrea was perfect! She was there when I needed her and stepped back when I needed the space. We love Labor of Love so much were looking forward to our apt tomorrow with our 2nd bundle of joy!!! Thank you to the wonderful women at Labor of Love!! You definitely impacted our lives for the better and we thank you every day for our beautiful son and cant wait to see everyone again very soon!!!!
Our 4th child was born at Labor of Love with Bea November 12,2010. This was my first experience with having a child in a birthing center, How I wish I would have done so with my other 3 children. I had no complications with my hospital births but the relaxed environment in the birthing center was just priceless. I originally started out with an OB/GYN but found that just beacuse I was 40 and by their terms “ADAVANCED MATERNAL AGE” (oh how I do not care for those words) I was being sent for so many unecessary tests. I had addressed these concens with Bea and Andrea and was quickly put at ease with my ability to control which tests I wanted to do that may be recomended The afternoon our daughter arrived we were blessed to be the only family in the center at the time. My two other daughters were with us and could come and go from the room as they felt they wanted. I LOVED the fact that the girls were able to participate in the prenatal appointments. It truly made it a family experience.
I wish we were having more children just to be able to experience Labor of Love again. I think with my oldest now in college and my youngest now almost 10 mos old I’ll just visit Labor of Love from time to time to check in with my friends Bea and Andrea 🙂
When I became pregnant with my first child I knew what kind of birth I wanted but was convinced I could achieve that in the hospital. I also, due to my own failure to do more research, didn’t even know that a home birth or birthing center birth was even possible in my area. Well, it went terribly wrong. I had every intervention short of a c-section and I left feeling very defeated and had no faith in my body’s ability to do what it was made to do. When I became surprisingly pregnant with my second I was determined to stay away from the hospital at all cost. Thank goodness I found LOL!! It wasn’t the same m/w then but Juline was the birth assistant and they were both awesome!! Juline was like a second mom to me, she didn’t arrive until after my daughter was born but we came close to having to transfer and she was so comforting. And aside from not being able to enjoy the tub because my daughter arrived only an hour after arriving, I felt amazing and knew that this was how it was supposed to be! My third and final child was attended by Bea at home. I just can’t say enough good things about her. She was truly amazing and didn’t even hesitate or act panicked when my little “tank” of a son’s shoulders didn’t want to budge. She handled the shoulder dystocia quickly and smoothly. Even though I only knew all of the wonderful ladies that were a part of LOL a short time I will never forget them and almost wish I was having another just to have an excuse to come visit.
To give you my background… I was a labor and delivery nurse and delivered my daughter the traditional way. When I got pregnant, I knew that I wanted/needed a completely different experience. My Integrative MD (former OB/GYN doc) recommended Labor of Love to me. I had heard nothing but good things about them.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVED my experience. The two of you would do wonderful in an environment like that. The midwives are top notch. I had a personal relationship with each of them by the time I delivered, which was so nice once delivery time came.
My ONLY complaint was that I delivered within 12 minutes of pulling into the parking lot. LOL!!
So I didn’t get to experience all the wonderful birthing center laboring things:) I had a huge bag packed full of laboring essentials and didn’t even pull it out of the car until 4 hours after delivery. But experience aside… I walked in 9 cm and within 8 minutes of arriving I was pushing and delivered within 4 minutes… My midwife was completely ready for me and handled the extreme situation with skill, ease and confidence.
Hubby and I are not planning on having anymore children, but I might almost consider it because the birthing center was such a great experience.
Ok, so I will stop going on an on about it.
I would highly recommend going and taking a tour to check it out.
Delivered: 9/24/10:) Can’t believe it’s been 11 months!!!!
We had our second baby here a week ago, Noah Finn! I had such a great experience. Rebecca was amazing and so calm and sweet! I can’t wait to get pregnant again so we can come back & have yet another amazing birth!!! Thank you Labor of Love for all you have done and are doing 🙂
Thanks for being there so women have the option to choose the kind of birth they want. We had a successful home VBAC. We’re just amazed the personalized quality of care, instead of just another 5 minutes patient with our previous experience. We wish the whole family can go to Labor of Love Lutz for all of our medical needs!
My experience at Labor of Love left me feeling positive, encouraged, and comfortable with myself as a pregnant woman and second-time mommy. Every time I walked in the door, I was reminded that it was okay to feel whatever I was feeling…scared, excited, upset, or at peace. It was MY pregnancy and it was going to happen the way I needed it to both emotionally and physically. The staff always went out of their way to meet the needs of myself, my husband, and our two-year-old daughter before, during, and after the arrival of our little boy. And I always know they are just a phone call away if there’s anything we ever need.
Labor of Love guided me through one of the most pivotal, beautiful, times of my life. Thanks to them I delivered my son on my terms, with full faith and understanding of what my body is capable of. Andrea is one of the kindest souls my partner and I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. And from our first consultation, Bea has been generous with knowledge, and a source of reassurance and clarity throughout my pregnancy. I look forward to celebrating the birth days of any future additions to our family right there and Labor of Love. Thank you ladies.
The great staff at Labor of Love provided me with the most amazing birth experience. It was all I ever imagined and more! I just found out I’m pregnant with my second child and can’t wait to go back! They all treated me and my entire family with care and respect. I always felt safe and supported. Thanks, Labor of Love team!!
I love LOL hav had three babies here and have another on the way. They areall great!
I couldn’t have dreamed up a better experience than the one I had with you all! I just can’t wait to have more babies there! 🙂
I’ve had two amazing births with the midwives at Labor of Love – I can’t wait to go back for the next pregnancy!
Labor of Love felt like a second home, everyone was so caring, compassionate, and professional, I enjoyed my birth experience very much, what a wonderful place to welcome your little one into the world!!!
Labor of Love was there and supported me during my most enjoyable birth. It’s because of them that I finally experienced a birth free of the annoyances and uncomfortableness that I experienced in my other births due to those attending my birth’s. The women at Labor of Love are truly wonderful people! My sisters, who were planning hospital births with epidurals, now want to birth with labor of love when it’s their time. That is pretty amazing in and of itself.
So sad I moved away and can’t birth here again! 3 of my babies were born with the Labor of Love team, and although there were 3 different midwives attending the experiences were all loving, professional, and peaceful. xoxo!
Thank goodness for Labor of Love and Bea’s expertise! She guided us through a very long delivery that never would have been allowed to happen naturally in a hospital setting. Thanks for making this most special day a wonderful experience for our family.
I have four children,three were in a hospital and my fourth,1st girl , was at labor of love. It was the most wonderful experience i have ever had. Thank you so much to all of you.
I recently had my second child, a daughter, at home with Bea and Kim. I was so happy to have a home birth and the experience was amazing and life-changing. The staff and midwives are wonderful. I *always* recommend LOL to friends who are thinking of going that route. Access to midwives and home birth are so important. Thank you to Bea and the entire LOL staff for making our birth such a monumental and joyful experience for our family.
I have always dreamed of having a water birth. I had some family who doubted my choice. They wanted me to give birth in a hospital. Labor of Love made my dreams come true. I gave birth to my daughter almost 7 months ago in the birthing tub. Everything went as perfectly as it possibly could. My family was very impressed with how professional Bea and Alicia were. I am glad that they were able to prove family wrong of their doubts! Labor of Love has a wonderful staff and I cannot wait to have my second child there… in a year or so. :o)
I had my first and second daughter at Labor of Love and am set to have baby #3 and first son there in October. I have had such amazing experiences at Labor of Love and I can’t recommend it enough to my friends who are also expecting.
My first two children were born in the hospital. I just welcomed my third child into the world at Labor of Love. The entire experience was amazing! All of the women at LOL were a joy to be around. I am so happy that we decided to birth at LOL – with the help of Andrea and Juline, we welcomed our little boy into a loving, family-centered environment. The prenatal appointments, birth, and postpartum care was exactly what we were hoping for. Thank you so much everyone at Labor of Love – you ladies rock!
I was part of a three baby marathon at the birth center in March and had my beautiful baby boy in the water! Everyone was calm and helped so much. Thanks so much Bea! She helped me through the whole time. My labor was incredibly smooth and quick compared to my hospital birth with my daugher. I loved it so much and plan on having my 3rd there too! Thanks ladies ♥
Our son was born in May with Andrea and Bea. Although there were some unforeseen complications (not the fault of anyone at Labor of Love!), it was the most amazing, perfect water birth. It was better than I could have hoped for and wouldn’t have changed a thing! Transferring from my old OB/GYN to the birth center was the best decision… I’ve made for our family (and I was even a late transfer; our baby was born only a month after my first visit). The staff are all amazing and have helped make my son the happy, healthy boy he is today. Not only are they there for prenatal care and labor/delivery, but they are also more than willing to help with ANYTHING you need anytime in the future. I can’t thank them all enough for everything they have done for us. I look forward to having future babies at Labor of Love!
Hey guys! Two years ago I delivered my son Zen here and had a Wonderful experience! Bea and Andrea were simply the most caring and knowledgeable midwives I know.
2 years ago today Iris Cay Fleming was born @Labor of Love Birth Center with @Andrea Gualtieri our dear friend and midwife and 2 lovely birth assistants. This was a calm, natural, unfurling event that has brought so much joy to our lives. We left with 10 lbs of baby love and a lifetime of warm memories. Thank you Bea and all of the crew. ♥ We ♥ LOL!
Thank you soooo much Labor of Love!! I had such a wonderful experience with you guys. Everyone was super nice to me and someone was always available to answer my questions and handle my problems during my pregnancy and after! I even received very valuable help with breastfeeding!
Filing out my client survey today and I just wanted to thank the wonderful staff and midwives again. We had the most amazing experience at LOL. The providers are incredible. I recommend them to everyone, as the experience of giving birth with these amazing women changed my life. It was so beautiful and perfect. I still can’t believe I was able to have a water birth and bring my beautiful baby boy into this world so peacefully 🙂
I can’t thank all of you enough for the amazing care and the level of support and encouragement that I’ve received from the midwives and the staff at LOL. Kennedy was born two weeks ago with Andrea, and it was truly my dream birth! I can’t wait to do it all over again
I just want to say… I wish I was pregnant all the time… the time and attention I got from you gals for my mental breakdowns was sooooo amazing… I wish I could get that emotional attention everyday!!! 🙂
Five years ago today we gave birth to our son Gabriel at LOL. Thank God for waterbirths and midwives!
Wonderful, I had both my sons here and plan to have another here. They all really care about your health and feelings.
You all are great,
2 Babies delivered and hopefully more! Labor of Love is amazing! They help us do what our bodies are made to do! Unless you are high risk this is where to be! I have had 2 babies and hope to have more there…God willing! I had my first son with a regular OB/GYN at St Joes and it was not the experiece I would ever want again! Labor of Love is an hour away from me and well worth the drive! I thank God for bringing me to them.
Labor of Love Birth Center is INCREDIBLE. They are friendly and knowlegable and treat a pregnant woman like a well person who is in control of her own care. Deliverying my son there in their birth tub was the most empowering event of my life. I felt I was in the SAFEST place I could be with the best possible staff for this life-changing event.
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