We have trust in the process of birth and in mother/baby's ability to instinctually, find their unique way to birth. 

Shelton Livingston LM, CPM, Doula

I believe that all mothers and babies have a right to safe, gentle and joyful birth experiences.  I trust that gentle; compassionate beginnings encourage peaceful lives, which contribute to the peace we strive for on earth.  

As a teenager, I recognized my passion for natural childbirth and started attending births at age 16.  I have since been on a quest of collecting knowledge and wisdom about childbirth.   Ive had 2 home births myself, one in 2000 and my second in 2014.   

I earned my Doula certification thorough DONA in 2002.  I then went to college to earn my BA in Community Studies with an emphasis on Women’s’ Health issues from UC Santa Cruz.  In 2009, I enrolled in midwifery school though the National Midwifery Institute.  I gained my clinical requirements through apprenticeship with community home birth midwives and at Thrive Birth Center in Santa Rosa.

I am a  Certified Professional Midwife through NARM  and Licensed Midwife through the California Medical Board.  I also carry current CPR/BLS and Neonatal Resuscitation certifications.

Annmarie Russo LM, CPM, Doula

I think of myself as a practical, down to earth type of person. I tend to stay calm in intense situations. My children have taught me how to be a more patient person, which helps me greatly in my midwifery practice. I was called to midwifery after the birth of my son who was born at home in Mexico, attended by a midwife. His birth was empowering and joyful, and I discovered I had a strength that I had never known before.  This experience inspired me to work with birthing families. I first trained as a doula and became a certified doula through DONA.  I attended births as a doula for a number of years before I enrolled in the MEAC accredited midwifery training program at Maternidad la Luz, an academic school as well as a busy birth center in El Paso, Texas. I completed my training at Maternidad la Luz, moved back to California, and gave birth to my second child, a little girl, who I caught myself in the water at home.  I completed my exams to became a NARM certified professional midwife and to obtain my midwifery license from the Medical Board of California. I have also attended over 300 births during my career.

I love midwifery for many reasons; I believe the way we are born has the potential to change the world. Midwifery meets me on a spiritual, intellectual, emotional, political and physical level. I am constantly learning from the families I serve and the other midwives I work with.  I can’t deny that my favorite place to be is in between a women’s legs catching her baby– it is always an honor and a joy!

“There is a secret in our culture, and it’s not that birth is painful. It’s that women are strong.”

—Laura Stavoe Harm

“Let choice whisper in your ear and love murmur in your heart. Be ready. Here comes life.”

—Maya Angelou

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