Birthing is not a topic I am an expert in but thankfully on today’s episode, I have one of my FIRST money coaching clients and fellow Wellesley College alum, Lindsey Vick, join us today to talk about entrepreneurship, working as a healer, spirituality, hypnotherapy, and the birth world! I learned SO much on today’s talk and I truly believe that Linsey’s work is anticapitalist because it centers the person giving birth, their needs, and makes childbirth a more joyful experience. We also talk about racial disparities in maternal health, too, so buckle up and get ready to learn!
Lindsey Vick, CHt, RMT, HBCE, Doula, is the founder and co-owner of Sunflowers Healing and Wellness and co-founder of HelloBirth Hypnobirthing®. Lindsey is a Clinical Hypnotherapist, Usui Reiki Master-Teacher, Certified HypnoBirthing® Practitioner, and a Birth Doula. She has been working with hypnosis since 2009 and has seen first-hand the power of the mind to positively alter a person’s emotional, physical and mental states. She believes that true healing can begin when both the mind and body release negative energy to accept positive change.
As a former corporate and management consultant, Lindsey also brings a structured understanding of problem solving and excels in helping match tools and solutions to client needs. Lindsey’s passion for helping people achieve satisfying birthing experiences is derived from her own personal experience. She is the proud mother of two children, the first born via cesarean in 2006, the second, a HypnoBirthing® baby, born at home in 2010. A graduate of Wellesley College (Economics & Urban Studies), Lindsey studied hypnosis with the National Guild of Hypnotists and the National Association of Transpersonal Hypnotherapists. She was recognized by the HypnoBirthing® Institute as a Certified Practitioner of HypnoBirthing® and was trained as a Birth Doula by Birth Arts International. Lindsey’s Reiki Master lineage is six degrees separated from Dr. Mikao Usui, the founder of modern Usui Reiki.
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10. HelloBirth HypnoBirthing® with Lindsey Vick
Episode 10 – HelloBirth HypnoBirthing with Lindsey Vick
Podcast Transcript Below
Charly: Hello everybody. Welcome to the Unicorn Millionaire Podcast. I’m your host, Charly Stoever. I’m a non-binary Latinx money coach, helping my first gen clients become millionaires. I’m a formerly undocumented Mexican American and currently digital nomad traveling all over the worlds, and I’m super excited to have you here along with me on my journey.
I talk about personal finance, money, mindset, twerking, unicorns, rainbows, you name it. We’re here, we’re queer, and we are going to build wealth for ourselves and our communities.
Yay. Welcome, Lindsey to the Unicorn Millionaire Podcast if we’re excited to have you.
Lindsey: Yay. I’m excited to be here with you, Charly.
Charly: Yes. So I’m super jealous of your travels to Florida. I’m out here dog sitting in DC and you’re partying enough with the [00:01:00] dolphins.
Lindsey: Yes, they are the coolest. Had no idea how neat dolphins really were.
I feel like, you know, they, they were jumping out of the water to say hi to us. That’s kind of how it felt. Yes. Such joy. Yeah, joy is what we need.
Charly: I’m really excited to have you, uh, just for some background for the listeners we met because our mutual friend Amy Wong, who you went to Wellesley with, referred you to work with me for one of my first money coaching clients back when I was Oh, so cool.
Reading it. Yeah. Like a side hustle. Still doing the one off calls and now I just have the six month program. But that’s how we met and I’m really excited to have you on to talk about your entrepreneurship journey, uh, especially coming from Wellesley College. I don’t feel like I’ve met a lot of entrepreneurs.
I’m super excited to have you on and talk about, talk about just doing life differently cuz you are my people. I never fit in in the nine to five and I started my journey because I never felt like I fit in. I was never scared to [00:02:00] leave. I was like, there must be something better. So before we get started, why don’t you go ahead and introduce yourself and what you do.
Lindsey: Sure, sure Charlie. So I’m Lindsay Vick and I’m the owner of Sunflower Healing and Wellness, which is a virtual health and wellness center that’s home boost in the DC area. But we see clients, um, all over the country and we’ve got international clients as well. I’m also the co-founder of Hello Birth, which is a hypnobirthing childbirth education program.
We have instructors all over the US and we help families learn how to use self hypnosis skills so that they can have an easier, more comfortable. And often shorter and safer birth experience. So that’s, um, that’s what I do. And people are wondering, you know, what is a virtual health center? ? Yeah. What do you mean?
Virtual health center? Mm-hmm. . We are non medicinal, nonclinical, um, [00:03:00] emotional mental health, physical health support. Um, our team consists of, uh, myself, I’m a hypnotherapist and an energy healer. Uh, we have a life coach and we have another birth. Do. I’m also a birth doula and a postpartum doula on our team.
So we see clients in a virtual setting, and our goal, our mission, is to empower our clients, the folks who walk through our door, empower them to lead their best lives, to let go of the barriers and limitations that hold them back from finding that joy that you were talking about. Charlie, uh, you know, it is possible to let go of trauma.
It is possible to walk away from pain if you have the tools and the support system to do that. So that’s what we help our clients to do in a lot of different ways, and it’s incredibly fulfilling, challenging, um, inspiring. It’s [00:04:00] something that, you know, I wake up each day and look at my agenda and I think, gosh, I’m so glad to be doing this work,
And I don’t think a lot of people get to say that about their job. Yeah, I have a, I’m married. We’ve been married almost 20 years. We have an almost 16 year old and almost 12 year old. My 12 year old’s favorite game right now is, would you Rather and, uh, ? So yesterday’s, would you rather question was, would you rather have a job that you hated, that paid you a ton of money, more money than you could spend?
Or would you rather have a job that you really enjoyed but barely paid enough to make your bills? And, uh, you know, I, it’s something to think about, you know, where do you find your joy? Is it being able to do what you want with your spare time or is it enjoying what you do throughout your workday? And, um, you know, I definitely don’t make more money than I could spend[00:05:00]
Right. I make enough to pay my bills for sure. Um, but I really do enjoy the work that I do each day. It’s definitely not a nine to five like you were saying. Uh, I don’t really feel like, you know, you went to Wellesley as well, so you may relate to this experience. I feel like Wellesley prepared us to be good stewards in the world, um, to be good people in the world.
Mm-hmm. , uh, to be leaders in the world, but not necessarily to start and run your own business. Mm-hmm. , that wasn’t exactly what I got from Wellesley. Yeah. Um, so it’s, yeah, it’s been a, it’s been a learning experience. I come from a family of entrepreneurs, so I always had that family support, which I think is also really critical.
Charly: Definitely super important. And for those listening, if your family does, thinks you’re crazy for starting your own business, you can find your online family or coaching, not having family. Yeah. Not an excuse to not dabble in [00:06:00] entrepreneurship, but that’s a, that you saw Yeah. Entrepreneurship in your family.
So for you it wasn’t such a wild off thing.
Lindsey: Yeah. Which doesn’t mean that, you know, I didn’t have some moments of of sheer terror. When I was leaving a nine to five salaried career, uh, to go start this brand new thing. I remember when I, when I sat down with my parents at dinner one night to tell them that I was planning to quit my job and start this business, my parents looked at me like I had just said, you know, something in Greek, or I had 10heads.
They were like, but you still have student loans. . Yeah. Yep. Yep. I do, I do. I have student loans and I wanna do this thing and I’m gonna do this thing. And guess what? I did this thing. It’s been 12 years now and, um, wow. You know, I, I think my parents still don’t quite know exactly what I do, but they know that I’ve been successful and they’re really proud of me.
Charly: [00:07:00] Yes. That’s what matters. And I honestly dunno what you do, but that’s why you’re here on this podcast. Us know more. Cause I’ve heard of birth doulas and all I know really is that they, they use less like chemicals, less medicine. It’s more natural. But I’m super curious to understand exactly how all of this works.
Uh, but yeah, first let’s take a step back. Why don’t you go ahead and just talk about, um, Wellesley, I think you studied economics and urban studies, and then what happened after that?
Lindsey: Yeah. So I left Wellesley with a dual degree. I majored in. Economics and urban studies. And for my urban studies degree, I took a lot of classes at MIT.
And uh, that was a really neat experience to me before a different podcast day, , um, leaving Wellesley, I got a job in the management consulting world and, um, I was there for about 12 years. I saw an opening for, um, some, some deeper work in the affordable housing arena, which [00:08:00] was my passion at the time. Um, I was on a nonprofit board in my city for affordable housing development.
And I, with my firm, you know, I was hired to do general consulting contracts, but after a couple of years of that, I, I was seeing more opportunities in the affordable housing, uh, development management, um, technical assistance area. And so I approached my boss, who was the CEO of the company and asked, you know, if this was something I could develop, if I could create a department that specialized in affordable housing, technical assistance and training. And he gave me the green light, uh, partially, I think because he was from Massachusetts and knew the reputation of, you know, the Wellsley graduate. Yeah. And so I had a lot of leeway to create a department that met my needs.
And, uh, and that was a lot of, I was, you know, in my early twenties just kind of getting my career [00:09:00] started. And I had a lot of responsibility. Uh, my main client was the s Department of Housing and Urban Development, and through that agency I provided technical assistance and training to housing authorities and housing programs, affordable and, uh, assisted housing programs throughout the country.
I did a lot of traveling through that. Um, you know, this was back in, gosh, the early two thousands where, you know, meetings were still in person. , you didn’t have Zoom. It wasn’t a thing. I’m not even sure if we had smartphones at the time. I think Blackberry we had right? We had blackberries, we had, we had cell phones, but they were flip phones still.
Yeah. You couldn’t even send a text message on them. . They were just for making phone calls. Um, so I did a lot of travel back and forth to my client sites and, um, you know, that got me to faraway places like Guam and Hawaii and some little tiny towns in mainland [00:10:00] US like Flowin, Alabama, um, Foley, some towns in Mississippi, places around the, the states that I would never have gone to on my own.
It was really neat to be able to see that part of the country. Um, anyway, a few years passed. This was a successful and thriving department now. Um, but I was also getting married around this time and thinking about starting a family. And the traveling lifestyle just wasn’t gonna work for what I wanted to do with my life after my first child was born, gosh, that was in 2006.
Um, you know, I talked with my bosses about what kind of schedule I needed to have and they were super flexible with allowing me to kind of have a flex schedule where I, you know, worked at times that made sense for my family. Uh, still full time, still meeting all of the demands of my job, but not doing as much travel.
And I used to do about two to [00:11:00] three weeks of travel . And, uh, wow. In this new role. Wow. It was more like, you know, a few days of travel a month. Mm-hmm. and that meant bringing on new people. Um, I tried to hire, uh, women when I could. Um, had a nice strong team of women who worked with me and for me. Um, and they did a lot of the traveling.
And then when I had my second child, um, I learned about, as part of my childbirth education, I learned about hypnosis for childbirth. And around this time, you know, my, my interests, my passions, my direction in life started to kind of change necessarily that that happens whenever you have a major life event.
Like, you know, having a child or, you know, whatever it might be that is created significant change in your life. Mm-hmm. . And so through that experience, um, you know, I learned about the power of our minds to create change in our bodies. I learned how to use some very [00:12:00] simple breathing techniques and visualization techniques and, uh, hypnosis techniques to have an easier birth experience.
The second time around, just for reference with my first baby, I was in labor for about three days and ended up having a C-section. Wow. After pushing for about eight hours. Mm-hmm. for my second child where I was using hypnosis for birth, I was in labor for a shorter amount of time than I pushed with my first baby.
My entire labor start to finish was about seven hours. Wow. And yeah, throughout this labor, I am, you know, thinking in my head about how much easier this is, how much more comfortable I feel, how much more. Control and empowered I was feeling throughout this labor, and I remember Charly a a certain moment in labor thinking to myself, oh, well this labor is different [00:13:00] because you know, it’s a different baby.
The baby’s smaller. The baby’s in a better position. And all of those things were true. But the moment I stopped using my hypnosis techniques was the very moment that I felt this rush of sensation that I remembered from my first birth. So it had nothing to do with the different baby, the smaller baby, the different positioned baby.
It had everything to do with how I was choosing to. I had a doula with me in that birth, and I remember the doula just sort of stroking my forehead and making suggestions about positions. One in particular, I kept saying to myself, Nope, I don’t want that position. I don’t want that position. I wanna see where I am
And uh, and finally now my baby was coming and I was in denial. And I finally listened to what my doula said, and I moved into the position that she suggested, boom, you’re [00:14:00] comfortable, baby . And I thought, Hmm, maybe if I had done that, like, I don’t know, two hours ago when you said it, this might have been a five hour labor instead of a seven hour labor.
Maybe it helps to listen to a professional. Yes, yes. That’s why she was there. Uh, I, you know, I, I. I remember her being right by my side, and I remember my partner being right by my side as well. And there’s this wonderful picture of the two of them sitting side by side. And I’m laboring in a, a birthing tub right in front of them, adjacent to them.
And, uh, I remember just feeling so cared for and tended to and supported mm-hmm. . And that’s what I hope to bring to my clients. It was in one of those moments, Charly, that I decided that I wanted to leave my career and open my new business. And the, the word sunflowers was, um, something that came to mind.
This was a planned home [00:15:00] birth. And I had my eyes closed for most of the labor. But every time I opened my eyes, I happened to be facing this bay window where the sunshine was pouring. And I felt empowered and strengthened and nurtured by that sunshine, which is the same experience that a sunflower has.
It derives its power and its growth and its strength from the sun so much that it follows the sun with its face across the sky. If you look at a time lapse of a sunflower, it’s face moves throughout the day to follow that sun and, uh, drive our energy from that sunlight. And I wanted to, um, to express that in the work that I do.
I’m not the one who does the empowering that. Energy, that power is here for all of us to take. Mm-hmm. , it’s here for all of us to use. [00:16:00] We just kind of sometimes need the tools to get to it, to har, to, to, to, uh, harness it. And that’s what I hope to provide for my clients. So I like to say that my, my youngest child and my business were born on the same day.
They were born on the same day. Yeah. So I became a childbirth instructor immediately after that birth. I trained in hypnobirthing. I also wanted to have a deeper understanding of hypnosis and to be able to help my clients with whatever their healing journey might have been by using hypnosis. So my first step was to get certified as a hypno, therapist.
And, um, you know, some people understand what hypnosis is and some people think they understand what hypnosis is, and most people, unless they’ve actually experienced it professionally, or, uh, you know, as a client, don’t really have a clue what it is. Most of what we [00:17:00] understand in mainstream society is, uh, a myth, right?
It’s just not actually how it works. Most hypnotists don’t use props. What we see when hypnotists use props is usually stage hypnosis, which is entirely for entertainment. Hypnos therapists use hypnosis techniques to help their client reach a therapeutic goal. When I first opened my business, my intention was to help people through their childbearing years, either before, during, or after.
But my very first client, Charly, was a, a professional athlete who needed to maintain his weight in order to stay in his competition class. And I thought, okay, universe, this is you telling me to open my doors a little wider. , right? Your clients don’t always come by you, you predict they will. They come how you need them to come.
And early mentor in my business told me that, uh, the folks who [00:18:00] come to see me will largely be people I have something in common with our healing journeys align in some way. I’m still trying to figure out how this guy and I align in our journeys. But, um, but he and I actually, uh, have, um, have been business partners at, at, at different times.
He owns a business as well and we’ve referred people back and forth to each other. So perhaps that was our alignment. Um, so I see people for hypnotherapy who are needing to, um, achieve a goal that they’ve been trying to achieve on their own, that haven’t been able to reach that goal. Might be, um, acquiring a new skill.
It might be, um, losing some weight. It might be stopping smoking. Mm-hmm. , that’s the one I’ve heard about. Pretty much the only one I’ve heard about . Yeah. Very effective with smoking cessation. Um, it is almost always [00:19:00] also releasing stress and anxiety and sometimes my clients come specifically for that, but for all of my clients, there’s some degree of emotion release that is necessary because that’s what serving as the barrier to them reaching their goals.
Right, Uhhuh, we all have the ability to reach our goals, right? That’s why we’re here. We’re here to reach goals. We’re here to learn about ourselves, to grow in different ways. The barrier often is these emotional layers that we put on, usually for protection, right? Yeah. We develop a fear of something. Why do we have that fear?
Because something bad could happen, right? And so we put this barrier, this, this layer of protection that’s called fear around ourselves. And so we’ll never have to experience that thing. Although sometimes that thing is innocuous, like public speaking. We’re afraid of the ridicule, we’re afraid of [00:20:00] judgment.
And so we shut down when we’re trying to speak in public so that we don’t have to experience that insecurity, right? Um, so a lot of my clients need some emotion release before we can even address the goal. And typically we can do all of that in one session. Different hypnotists will have a different structure.
But for my structure, it’s a two hour initial session. We spend a little bit of time kind of talking about what led to this point. Um, I’m understanding a little bit more about their background, but also about their personality and what kinds of approaches and techniques and styles of hypnosis will be most effective for them most quickly.
Mm-hmm. , it’s always my personal goal to see my clients as few times as possible. Mm-hmm. , some hypnotists will sell you on a, a four package session or a 10 package session, uh, session package. And I just feel like if we can knock it out in one, [00:21:00] why do we need to see each other 10 times? Yeah. So that’s what I do.
Um, the second hour of the session is hypnosis, and I do a, a complimentary recording so that my, my clients have a tool that they can take home with them and they can listen to that recording just to help reinforce the messages that were part of their session. Mm-hmm. , right? Hypnosis works often by repetition, so we continue to hear the same message over and over and over again.
It’s absorbed by the subconscious mind, which is the part of our minds that is responsible for our belief system. Mm-hmm. , it’s responsible for how we think, how we feel, how we move through our days. So if we can help someone to release a limiting belief or emotion, and then reintroduce that power that they were born.
To have the life that they want to have with all the [00:22:00] abilities and, um, skills and, um, you know, emotions and ways of being that are important to them. They can reach any goal, right? All they need is that confidence. And so that’s a piece of hypnosis that is absolutely critical, is instilling that sense of confidence that yes, you can do this.
I like to use a tool called future pacing. And in future pacing, I’ll guide my client to experience, whether it’s visual or it’s more tactile, or they’re just pretending, right? Pretending to see themselves or experience themselves. Some point in the future where this goal has already been achieved.
What does that life look like for them? What’s different in their lives? And then I help them integrate into that future self. Right. So we get a chance to really experience what that life is and how it feels so that they [00:23:00] become that future person, right? They’re now starting to think like a non-smoker or a slimmer person or a confident public speaker, or in your case, Charly, as a successful entrepreneur, you already are.
But for someone who was just getting started, right, just getting started and wondering, like, I dunno, is this for me? Will I be able to do it? What if, you know, I I don’t have enough money. Okay, put yourself in the shoes of already being successful in this work. How are you thinking about these things?
Adopt that thinking now. So it can really speed up, uh, a person’s journey. It can speed up their healing journey. It can speed up their growth journey, their learning journey. And that’s what we do in, uh, hypnobirthing. Hello Birth, um, which is a class that I, I created, I co-created, and, uh, and I teach both to instructors and to expecting families.[00:24:00]
Um, these folks learn how to use cell hypnosis techniques to help their laborers be more comfortable by envisioning it by, you know, creating it in their mind, listening to affirmations repeatedly through their pregnancy. Um, experiencing this idea that labor doesn’t have to be the most painful thing in the world, right?
It doesn’t have to be scary, and that’s a truth. It doesn’t. Yeah. Cause all we see in the movies is like screaming, screaming, like yelling at the husband. Usually it’s hetero partners. Like, get outta here, I hate you. And I’m just like, this is right. Does not look real. Can’t be this. I have attended 359 births as a doula.
And I can tell you there’ve been a handful of those where, you know, the, the, the person, person who was birthing was screaming at people, especially her partner. Uh, there was scratching at [00:25:00] his arm. There was, you did this to me. And those typically happen to be people who did not have childbirth education.
Um, were not, you not using self hypnosis skills. Yeah, we’re not prepared for labor. Um, about seven years ago, um, I made it a requirement for my doula clients to take a child worth class. It doesn’t have to be with me, but. It’s important that you have that foundation because again, coming back to my goal of helping people find that joy in their lives, I don’t think anybody goes through a labor like we just described and comes out of it and says, well that was fun,
Let’s do that again. No, they go, that was horrible. And I never wanna do that again. I mean, know, fortunately when a person has a baby, they tend to forget a lot of what happened. Um, that can be a good thing if you had a labor like that, but maybe let’s just try to not have a labor like that in the [00:26:00] first place.
Yeah. What if birth could be an enjoyable, pleasurable, positive experience? And that’s my goal for the doula clients that I work with. I want everyone to look back on their birth and say, that was a great day, no matter what the outcome is. I think you had mentioned earlier that doulas are, You know, they, they’re known for helping labor to be less complicated and use less intervention, and, and that’s all true.
We are evidence based to reduce complications in pregnancy and birth. We are, uh, shown by studies to lower the incidents of inductions, of cesareans, of epidural use, of suction and um, forcep use and the delivery and all of that is great, but we still don’t guarantee anything. While those studies do show that we increase the satisfaction of a parent, we [00:27:00] can’t promise that you’re not going to be one of the 20 something percent of people who have a C-section, even though you had a doula, right?
Mm-hmm. , which is a significant chunk lower than the national average of like 32%. Oh, really? Yeah. One out of three American people going into a hospital with a head down baby. And one baby inside, not multiples, expecting a vaginal birth will have a C-section. Mm-hmm. . What? That’s outrageous. It’s outrageous.
And so yes. One of the things that I work hard at doing is educating my clients about their options, empowering them to use their agency and bodily autonomy, especially when they’re birthing inside of a hospital, which is frankly a business. Yeah. And that business is set up to make money and they don’t make money.
When you are laboring here for four days, they make a whole lot money, a whole lot more money when you come in for an induction and you labor for a day and you have a [00:28:00] C-section on the end. That’s just a fact, right? Yeah. That’s not to say that, you know, all doctors and all nurses and hospitals, all midwives are pushing people towards that.
I’ve worked with some amazing physicians and midwives and nurses and hospital centers. Mm-hmm. , but there definitely are some who don’t care how you have your baby as long as it comes by five o’clock, because I’m going home. , right? , my first OB with my, my first child. I was due the day before Thanksgiving.
And, um, one of my prenatal appointments say in May, she said, well, let’s go ahead and get your induction scheduled. And for anybody listening, an induction means we’re going to give you medicine to make your labor start. Oh, to induce it. Okay. Now I, and to induce, right? Mm-hmm. . And I’m like, okay, is there, like, is there something wrong?
Can you already tell that I’m not gonna be able to go into labor on my own? And she looked at me and said, Well, [00:29:00] honey, you’re due right around Thanksgiving and I’m like, my eyes got really big . Cause the hospital closed on Thanksgiving. Like, I don’t understand. What what do you mean ? Well, what she meant was she was planning on spending the holiday out of the country.
Charly: Oh my fucking God. I can’t.
Lindsey: And she wanted all of her patients to have their babies before she went Jesus. Oh yeah. So had I had a doula at that time, my doula would’ve said it is her obligation to be with you or to find a suitable, um, substitute. Right as it was. I didn’t have a at birth, but I did know better and I decided this is not the situation that I wanna be in.
So I saw provider. Yeah. But a lot of people don’t and often they hear. Well, let’s schedule your induction at the end of their pregnancy. My OB did me a favor by letting me know when I was four months pregnant that she was not [00:30:00] the doctor for me. Mm-hmm. . But a lot of times people don’t realize that. I mean, they ask questions, they get answers that sound satisfactory, but they don’t ask the right questions.
Mm-hmm. , they ask questions like, you know, moving around is important to me in labor. Am I gonna be able to, to be up and moving? Oh, sure, you can move around. That’s fine. That’s what they hear. But what they really need to be asking is, how many of your patients are out of the bed during labor. Just you can do something, doesn’t mean it actually happens.
There’s a big difference there, and that’s what a doula can help you understand is what is actually possible with this provider at that facility. And if that doesn’t align with your needs and your goals, what will. I do a lot of that kinda education with my clients and helping them align themselves with providers who already do what they want instead of trying to squeeze something new out of someone who’s been [00:31:00] doing this for, you know, way longer than you’ve been pregnant.
Mm-hmm. , how about we just go someplace that already does this. Mm-hmm. , let’s take the fight the work out of this situation. Labor is already enough work by itself. We don’t need to add extra toil, um, to that process. Um, so I, you know, something that I really love doing is empowering my clients. I don’t have any attachment to how people give birth.
Most of my clients come because they do want a low intervention. Um, often unmedicated, but not always un vaginal birth. But I also have clients who come fully planning a c-section, fully planning to have an epidural as soon as they can. And I love supporting ’em just as much as I love supporting my clients who want, you know, no epidural or to have their baby at home or in a birthing tub, I, you know, I feel like everybody deserves to have a [00:32:00] positive birth experience.
And that’s one of the ways that, you know, we create healthy, happy people. It starts at birth or even before then, right? The messages that our babies get when they’re in the womb of being wanted, of being cherished. Of being loved. There was a study out several years ago that looked at the composition, and I may, I’m not scientific, so I may use the wrong words here, but it was , basically.
Composition of tears when those tears were happy tears. Versus when they were sad tears and there’s a different chemical composition there. Well, the same thing is present in other substances of the body, like amniotic fluid. The amniotic fluid taste changes. Oh. When the pregnant person is experiencing a trauma versus when they’re experiencing a joy.
And if the baby is constantly surrounded by this [00:33:00] trauma fluid, then the baby’s brain develops in a way that, that, that it’s more of like a survivalist brain. Yeah. Rather than I have space to be artsy and free and creative and, you know, grow in all these different ways. Yeah. That baby is gonna have to figure out how to survive from the very beginning.
So more of its brain structure is going to be geared towards survival. Right. And that baby can still lead a healthy, happy, joyful life. It’s just a different kinda experience. Uh, I feel like we set people. Better for life when we can bring them into the world in a joyful way. Right? Not necessarily in a no intervention way, not necessarily in a no epidural way, in a joyful way.
I had a a c-section client last fall and uh, they were just so special and so excited [00:34:00] about this birth that they were planning, and they knew the baby needed to be born via C-section. And we did some work around that acceptance and, you know, finding joy there. And the day of the baby’s birth was just such a happy experience.
I never forget the mother’s she walked into, into the space where they were going to get her prepped for the C-section. The smile on her face, I mean, it was 50 miles wide . Her cheeks were, were like trying to climb into her eyes because they were so high with this joy and, um, You know, that’s, that’s what I hope for all of my clients, for every last one of them, that they experience that kind of joy when they’re bringing their babies into the world.
And you know, that’s something doulas can help to achieve. And it can absolutely happen without a doula. But hey, it’s a whole lot easier to do that if you do have a doula.
Charly: I really like, like what you said about how hospitals are a [00:35:00] business, America, everything’s privatized, even things that should education.
Yep. Health is not public here, . It’s healthcare. Its not. So I think absolutely in the sense of you’re also helping people save a bunch of money and, and I’ve also heard statistics about how black women die more than any other race too. We can’t pretend like racism doesn’t play a part in this either.
This’s. Right. I’m wondering, are most of your clients BIPOC White 50 50? Or what’s the racial makeup to of your clients?
Lindsey: Yeah, so I would say it’s a little bit more than 50% of my clients are Caucasian. Mm-hmm. And, uh, and the balance would be, would be BIPOC. Um, there’s a bit of a different kind of relationship with my clients.
Most of them are coming because they don’t wanna die while they have their baby. Yes. I actually had a client say that to me. She sat in front of me and she says, Lindsey, I just don’t wanna die having my baby. Yeah. And uh, and [00:36:00] something absolutely heartbreaking was at her labor. Her baby was having some major deceleration with their heartbeat, and she needed to have an emergency cesarean.
And that’s a term that is thrown around a lot, uh, because technically any surgery that’s not scheduled is considered an emergency surgery. So I had a C-section with my first baby, and it’s technically an emergency C-section. Charly, I was laboring in my house. I was planning to birth my baby in my house, but my midwife and my husband and I decided this wasn’t happening.
Mm-hmm. labor is just not going to produce a vaginal birth. So we walked out of our house and down the stairs and got into our own vehicle, and my husband drove me to the hospital and we parked across the street and we walked in and we sat for three hours, and then we had a C-section. Tell me what was emergent about that.
Oh my God. Where was the emergency? Right? Yeah. But that’s the message that [00:37:00] is sent. Oh, emergency. You think, oh my gosh. Life or death, right? Mm-hmm. . And so we have this whole culture of people, mostly women who have experienced trauma only because of the name that we gave their birth. Mm-hmm. , not the actual birth, just the name that we called it.
We decided to call that an emergency. Anyway, back to the story. Uh, this client had a true emergency where the baby needed to be born immediately. Mm-hmm. , and there was no time to discuss as they were wheeling her out of the room. She looked back at me and said, please don’t let me die.
It’s like a stab through the heart because at that point we’ve done everything that we could. She had great childbirth education padding cell on the back there because it was with me. So I know it was good. She had an amazing supportive provider. She had an amazing [00:38:00] supportive partner. She had a great doula.
Again, self pat. Uh, she had all the things right. We put all the tools in place and still she needed to have this kinda birth and, um, know it was scary. Long story short, she turned out to be just fine and that gave a super healthy, happy toddler who has a younger sibling now, and everybody was okay. But that was a scary moment.
It was a scary moment and for me, it articulated what we see in the studies. Mm-hmm. , it doesn’t matter who your provider is, it doesn’t matter what your income is, it doesn’t matter what your education is. The only thing that matters is that you’re black in America. Mm-hmm. . And being black in America. The, the systemic racism.
The institutional racism, it weathers you. Mm-hmm. . And we’ve been learning a lot more about this term weathering in the past several years and the effects of weathering in the birthing room. And I [00:39:00] believe that that is what accounts for this disparity in, in birthing outcomes when you hold steady for income education provider type, uh, preparation for birth, when all of those things are constants and you still have this disparity.
Mm-hmm. , well, it has to be an effect of the weathering of racism. Just has to be. Yeah, of course. Um, so yeah, that’s a, that’s a tough, tough pill to swallow. Um, you know, and I think the important thing is that we continue to amplify the needs of black women during childbirth and pregnancy and postpartum as well.
You know, the risks and complications of pregnancy don’t end the minute the baby is born. Mm-hmm. , they continue. Just ask Serena Williams, ask Serena Williams who almost died because of a postpartum complication that was ignored. Didn’t she have a blood clot that I see often? She did. Mm-hmm. . Yeah. And she, she recognized the [00:40:00] symptoms and, uh, that’s, you know, not a common postpartum experience, but it can happen postpartum.
Um, in fact, I had a client recently who had a clot and it resulted in a pretty significant complication and a weeks long extra stay at the hospital. Um, there were some very immediate signs that we recognized and we were able to, you know, bring attention to, and she got the care that she needed right away.
Um, I’ve worked with people who developed preeclampsia, actually. This is now postpartum preeclampsia, which is a, um, condition of blood pressure and, uh, and the liver where things are just not working properly. In layman’s terms, things are not working properly. Mm-hmm. , uh, the only treatment if it happens during pregnancy is to birth the baby.
People generally are able to get to about 35 to 37 weeks before, you know, being diagnosed with this, but it usually be [00:41:00] needed in because it can, can be, uh, both. Another the baby baby. It can also develop after the baby is birth. It’s gonna be within the first day for one or two nights, and then you’re sent home, and then maybe you see your child’s pediatrician at one week after birth, but you won’t see your OB or midwife for six weeks.
What’s happening in those six weeks? If breastfeeding, your milk is coming in, your baby’s trying to learn to latch, you may have all kinds of complications from that, you continue to bleed. If you had any vaginal tearing, you’re continuing to heal all of this needs monitoring, supervision, support, sometimes clinical assistance, but you’re not getting any of that unless you have access to resources.
Mm-hmm. [00:42:00] like a. A doula who can come and say, yeah, this is not normal bleeding. You should call your provider. Mm-hmm. , these blood pressure readings are a little concerning. You should call your provider. Your baby is not latching so well, that’s why you’re having this kinda pain. Here’s some suggestions. Or here’s a lactation consultant that you can call.
United States, people just don’t get that support unless they have the knowledge and resource to know it exists and to be able to access it. . Yeah. Just like in any, you need to know how to advocate for yourself. . Exactly. , exactly. You know, I, I read about your story, Charly, and it’s, it’s so similar.
Like, you know, that these access, this, this avenue to well building exists and want to bring it to your community. Whereas there are other people who, you know, they, they were born with that access. Yeah. that access is institutional in their family. Mm-hmm. , um, you know, in the United States, we do not take care of postpartum mothers.
We just don’t mm-hmm. , uh, in other countries, [00:43:00] you might stay a week at the hospital. And during that time, my cousin gave birth at a hospital in Europe and um, she had like a, um, a whole like apartment set up, like a multi room postpartum recovery area. Wow. She had three course meals brought to her. . You give post-partum mothers in the United States. A tray of slop. Yeah. The institution food.
You probably get better food in prison. It’s awful. Mm-hmm. . Um, they sleep on terribly uncomfortable beds. They have nurses in and out doing their job, doing their job, but they, they’re in and out constantly and that regular interruption disrupts their sleep. It increases the risk of complication because their bodies are not able to rest.
And we have no guaranteed paid maternity leave for all mothers. And that is a tragedy. Um, I. I had a, a client many years ago now who had no [00:44:00] leave and did not have resources to be able to take unpaid leave. She returned to work when her baby was 10 days old. Yeah, 10 days old. And she’s standing for work on it.
Outrageous. Outrageous. Outrageous. Mm-hmm. . If you have a midwife assisted birth, you’ll probably, if you’re at home, you’ll see your midwife for about four hours after the baby is born. And then your midwife or her assistant will come and check on you the next day and they’ll be in touch with you every day for the first couple of weeks.
Mm-hmm. . And then you’ll continue to see them every couple of weeks throughout your fourth trimester, depending on the midwife. Some of them have different approaches, but generally you’re gonna see them a handful of. In the first six weeks as opposed to with the hospital provider where you see them once at six weeks and you, you know, maybe you can get in touch with them for questions before, but [00:45:00] likely not.
Likely not. Um, so yeah, there’s a, there’s a lot to be, uh, a lot to be learned from how other support their expecting families and their postpartum families. United States has a long way to go.
Charly: Yeah. We just treat humans like a production, like let’s go induce the baby it out and we don’t care. You should be happy you have a baby in the first place.
I didn’t even know about postpartum depression until recently. I was like, oh, this is a thing. Yeah. And I feel like there’s so much shame around that, and I’m finally starting to hear more about miscarriages. I think people are just opening up to how things aren’t, what it plan to be. There’s shame around it and there shouldn’t be.
Lindsey: One in four people who have penis and vagina sets will have a miscarriage. Wow. One in four. That’s a lot. Mm-hmm. . That’s a lot. Um, and, uh, there was another stat that I [00:46:00] wanted to share with you. It just slipped my mind. You were, oh, postpartum depression. Perinatal mood anxieties and depressions are the number one pregnancy complication.
The most common complication of pregnancy is perinatal mood disorders. And it’s also the least discussed. The most taboo. Yeah. I’ve never heard of it. Whats our, our really reticent to share that, you know, they had prenatal anxiety or postpartum psych. There’s so much, um, hidden about that because no one wants to acknowledge that, you know, they had this issue.
Um, I had postpartum depression after my first child was born, and that’s part of the reason why I did things so very differently. With my second, um, with my second baby. I wanted to be sure that I had a midwife who I trusted, who I [00:47:00] knew had had a similar experience, uh, to what I was planning, which was a vaginal birth after C-section or a v a and at home that would be called an HVAC home birth after Cesarean.
Mm-hmm. . So I hired a midwife who’d had an HVAC herself. Um, I had a Dora that time. I took the Hypnosis for Childbirth class and I put all of the tools in place that I felt I needed to be success. And, uh, and it worked. You know, I think some degree of the birth experience is about the planning you put in and the tools and supports that you have.
Some of it is luck, , some of it is just the, the, the divine nature that is part of birth. You can’t control every aspect of it. Mm-hmm. . And, uh, you know, just being able to, to say that you did everything possible has to be enough. Like it has to be enough. And so that’s something that I work with my clients on, is having that flexibility [00:48:00] to change course when necessary.
Mm-hmm. , and that’s something I teach in my childbirth classes as well. And flexibility.
Charly: Same with my money coaching clients. We think that a lot of clients come in and they think that I’m just gonna teach them the numbers. It’s like, Nope, we’re gonna talk about your childhood trauma. Cause never ends. And I always ask my clients, how did your parents talk about money with each other?
And then the floodgates open and then we realize like you inherited this pattern of like justifying your expenses that were needs and not wants to your significant other. And realizing you have to do that cause you make your own money. Like which you wanna keep and which do you wanna break that are all just inherited.
And so it just into what you were saying as well about the amniotic fluid, the baby’s ingesting that trauma and the stress before it even comes out into the world. Yeah. Which is so important too, to realize that you can also, there’s things you can’t control about the past, but I love how you [00:49:00] talk about stepping into your future self and something that.
I’ve been doing this here is imagining my millionaire future self, like the name of this podcast is Unicorn Millionaire, because I’m not a millionaire now. But it’s just an arbitrary number we assign to value people more than others. But what’s cool is you can start pulling in your, the characteristics of your future self.
My millionaire self. Right? I like to dress like them. I like to really think about how they would solve problems. And whenever I, I have like a conundrum, I just think of what my future self would do and they would just waste less time making decisions and just be more confident with their decisions.
Lindsey: Right. They resonate a lot with what you’re saying. Mm-hmm. , you know, and all of that is making your goals easier to achieve. Mm-hmm. , my, my son’s elementary teacher called that Helping your future self. Mm-hmm. , you know, what can you do today that helps your future? Hypnosis today, money coaching today, hiring a doula today.
All of these things [00:50:00] help your future self to be more successful. Mm-hmm. to have more joy in your life, which was kinda how we started today’s topic. Yeah. You know, finding that joy and, and really being in it. Yeah. Good stuff.
Charly: Yeah. And with some clients, I feel like this, some, they come to me because they, they’re not planning, they’re not caring for their future self enough.
And they’re living in the moment and spending, spending. And there’s a lot of guilt about, oh, I should have more. I should be better at saving. I’m making more money. But making more money does not change your money mindset at all. Or doesn’t heal the money trauma. But on the other spectrum, which I relate to is can be setting up your future.
Too much at the expense of your present self. So something I have to remind myself of now is, yeah, 75 year old Charly’s gonna ball out, have a yacht, whatever. But I also need to be present today and treat myself, even if it’s as simple as celebrating myself and like getting the BOSE noise canceling headphones.
I got myself the other day, [00:51:00] which I used to think was only for rich people. And then I was like, wait, Uhhuh, like I, these are all just these limiting beliefs that we clean up as we go, but it’s a never ending process. Cause there’s always more to uncover about how the mind is programmed us to keep us safe.
But, Yeah. Safe in the prehistoric sense. You know, like our brains have evolved, but they still have the safety mechanisms of when we were like 20,000 years ago, like running Yeah. We were too tiger. Yeah, that’s right.
Lindsey: That’s right. And that’s, that’s really how stress works in the body, you know, it’s gotta come out somewhere.
Yeah. And you know, 20,000 years ago it came out because we were running away from the tiger mm-hmm. . And so the stress was exerted through our muscles. And today, you know, the tiger is more metaphorical. Yeah. And so what are we running from, you know, the, the big bad doctor who wants to induce us that we don’t want, how does that stress come out?
Mm-hmm. , is it the bank account that [00:52:00] we’re afraid of that, you know, is, is dwindling? How does that stress come out? Mm-hmm. And it’s gonna come out somewhere in some way and often it comes out in poor health. Yeah. Or a poor mindset in, in the case of your clients poor mindset on how they’re thinking about things.
I, I might even argue that your future self could be 10 minutes from now or 10 years from now. Right. Anything that you’re doing right now is in advancement or, um, harmful to your future self. Mm-hmm. . So going ahead and pampering yourself today. Yeah. That’s helping your future self to be less stressful tomorrow.
Mm-hmm. and a less stressful tomorrow means a healthier 10 years from now. Yeah. It’s all about helping your future.
Charly: It’s really important for us to ask ourselves how are we investing in ourselves? Cause investing in general, people think crypto or stock markets. I like to get think about how are you investing in your meat suit in your body, and literally yourself [00:53:00] in a non-financial way.
And it makes people pause for a second because capitalism doesn’t want us to think like that. Capitalism wants us to be in a sense of lack and that we’re never enough, so we have to buy shit. , right? Uhhuh? Yep, yep, yep. Yeah. One of my clients, Diane, was like, it’s funny how we take cars for maintenance every couple months and it’s so normal, but when it comes to our own bodies, so we are much more hesitant about that.
Lindsey: Yeah. Absolutely. And you get your HVAC serviced every so often. Mm-hmm. and you know, all of the systems in our lives we take care of except for the ones in, as you called it in our meat suit. I love that term . That’s hilarious.
Charly: It’s cause I feel like we’re all spiritual bodies. Uh, like I’ve had my spiritual like awakening this year and just I’m stepping into consciousness and seeing back mm-hmm.
beyond the 3-D plane and I’m like, oh, my spiritual being is just wrapped up in this meat suit and like separating the two, but admiring the [00:54:00] conjunction of the two. I also have to take care of Right. That spiritual being is within. Yeah.
Lindsey: One of the things that I love most about my birth work is I get to be present for the meeting of the two.
The spiritual self and the, yeah. What’s that like? That was like, come together. Oh man. I’ve had many, many clients tell me that the moments before birth, uh, they felt out of their body. Mm. I’ve had them say that, you know, they felt like they weren’t alive, but they were so much more alive than than they ever had known before.
Mm-hmm. . And the way I see this is it is a spiritual journey. And at that moment where you step away from your meat suit, you go off into a different place, you’re going to get your baby. You go collect that baby and bring them out into the world with you. Oh. You’re welcoming them in. And, uh, you know, it doesn’t happen at every birth, but when I do notice it, I get [00:55:00] goosebumps because it is the most miraculous thing ever.
The process of conception, however that baby is conceived and the birthing process itself, they’re just magical. Mm-hmm. what a woman’s body does during labor. Holy shit. . It is magic. There’s no other word for it. . The changes that happen, the transformation. I love holding space for someone as they transform from, you know, a pregnant person into the parent of an outside baby.
From an expecting partner to the partner of, or the, the parent of this baby. It is the most amazing, most magical experience for everyone in the room. Mm-hmm. , everyone in the room. Um, you know, a practice that I like to keep at every birth is during those times just kind of scanning a room and making eye contact with everyone there and just reassuring them spirit to spirit.
[00:56:00] This is okay, this is okay. This is right, right now. This is okay. Even in those moments where, you know, Maybe there are some complications with the baby’s health or with the parent’s health, it’s still okay, right? Mm-hmm. , this is still magic. This is absolutely still magic. And, uh, I, I would say that’s one of my favorite parts of this work is being able to hold that space to support all those people in the room.
You know, good doctors, good nurses, good midwives appreciate having a doula in the room because they know the difference that we make. Mm-hmm. , they know that we help everybody in that room do their job better. The birthing parent, the partner, the clinical staff. We help everybody do their job better.
Mm-hmm. , right? Or the enhancements. . Yeah.
Charly: And what’s been the most challenging part of your work?
Lindsey: Oh, definitely being on call . I know I’m on vacation [00:57:00] this week, sort of kinda, uh, but I’m not, I’m not completely on vacation because I’m on call. Yeah. I have clients back at home who, you know, have due dates around this time and I have excellent backup support who will be helping out, but I’m the first call.
I have a virtual client who I’m on call for right now, so virtual doula birth means I’m going to be on the phone or on Zoom throughout their labor and birth and supporting things that way. So, yeah, that’s definitely the most challenging. There’s a, a funny joke when they, uh, birth community where someone asks you if you can do something or be somewhere and you say yes, unless I’m at a birth.
You can never really commit to anything. Something I learned early on is, uh, is for this work to be sustainable over time, I had to protect my space and have some boundaries over my time. So I have set office hours. I don’t meet with [00:58:00] clients outside of those office hours. Mm-hmm. , I have contract holidays.
Those are my children’s birthdays, my husband’s birthday, our family’s birthday, our anniversary. Yeah. Christmas, Thanksgiving, a couple other, you know, dates that are really important to my family and I have guaranteed back on those days. Mm-hmm. because at the end of the day, if I’m not taking care of my family, I can’t take care of someone else’s.
Right. And I can’t fully be present for someone else’s. So that’s, that’s definitely a challenge is being on call all the time. The. You know, it’s, uh, you know, people are, are coming home from work. I might have had a whole day at work seeing my hypnosis clients or energy healing clients and uh, you know, you have dinner, you settle down, you’re thinking about going to bed, and then the phone rings.
Guess what? You’re going to work for 24 hours’. Hours. Those are challenging days. But you know, the reward at the end is being part [00:59:00] of that magic. Yeah. Yeah. You’ve literally created this job for yourself. That’s beauty of entrepreneurship. It’s so cool. don’t see it. Create it . Yeah. And I think that’s a really good message.
You know, there’s so much opportunity in this country. You know, I definitely did, uh, you know, bad mouth, the United States with regard to its birth outcomes, but those are statistics that are easily, uh, and readily available. Uh, but one thing the United States gets right. It supports people in development of career and entrepreneurship.
Wesley College could learn a little bit about that. Supporting that entrepreneurial spirit. I’d love to see the college do a little more to, uh, to support and uplift isn’t in it. I think there, there’s so much opportunity in this country for creating your own space.
Charly: Yeah. I love this. Well, this has been amazing. Thank you for being on this podcast. Sure. Before we part ways, why don’t you go ahead and tell us [01:00:00] about your upcoming childbirth class, doula opening, all of that good stuff.
Lindsey: Awesome, awesome. Yeah, I sure will. So I teach my class several times a year. This year I’m teaching a few less classes, uh, because I’m also doing some educator training. Uh, but n normally I teach 12 classes a year. This year I’m teaching four classes a year. So my upcoming class starts in October. I teach on Sunday mornings or Wednesday evening. So the October class is a Sunday morning class, um, 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM Eastern Time. It’s online, you can be anywhere.
Uh, but it meets, uh, starting Sunday, October 2nd for consecutive Sunday mornings until we break. And then I’ll have another class later in the fall. I haven’t set the dates for that one yet. I have some limited doula availability this fall myself. But we do have another birth doula at Sunflowers, and she has openings for each month this fall.
And you’re, [01:01:00] so I encourage anybody in DC. Yes, the DC uh, Northern Virginia, uh, prince George’s County, Montgomery County areas, um, of the dmv. We do virtual births anywhere you are, but in person births are gonna be in the DMV area. Yes. And you can learn about us and schedule your complimentary, uh, doula consultation on our website, which is sunflowers wellness.com.
It’s sunflowers with an us on the end, wellness.com.
Charly: I love it. Thank you so much for being on here. We talk about so many things, spirituality, healing, healthcare, racism in the healthcare, really grateful, grateful for you and the work that you’ve done.
Lindsey: Thanks so much, Charly, and I appreciate you inviting me onto your podcast to talk about all these really cool things.
I really appreciate this opportunity.
Charly: Yeah, it was so fun. Right? I’ll let you [01:02:00] go. Keep playing with the Dolphins in Florida.