Finley’s Birth Story

Finley's birth story |

So many of you have asked to hear Finley’s birth story, so I decided to I needed to sit down and put it together for the blog to share with everyone. So here’s the story of the baby that was born in a car…

Finley's birth story |

Miss Finley decided she was ready for her big debut on Halloween night. I was 39 weeks and 1 day pregnant (due date was Nov 6). We initially said we wanted her to wait and be late like her brother was, but David and I both guessed that she would actually come early. I was hoping she would wait until Nov 1-3, so I could still take Ellis trick-or-treating, but that obviously didn’t happen. Oh well. Close enough.

I went in for my regular prenatal appointment earlier that day, and at 11:30 when they checked me, I was 2 cm dilated and about 75% effaced, about a station -1. When they checked me a week earlier, there was no dilation, about 50% effaced, cervix was soft, and baby was “engaged.” The day before Finley was born, I felt a little off and zapped of energy. When David got home, I was taking a nap on the bed while Ellis watched a video on my phone. I felt crampy that night and some crampy feelings again the next day before my prenatal appointment. I had lost my mucus plug 2 days before, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that labor is imminent.

Left my prenatal appointment and stopped to grab Starbucks for me and my friend Lily, then went by her house to drop off her coffee and pick up a diaper pail from her. Had a couple of contractions on the way home and thought I probably shouldn’t be driving anymore. Got home and put Ellis down for a nap. I was going to nap too, but the contractions were keeping me from resting, and I noticed they seemed to be regular, so I decided I should go ahead and take a shower and put on some fresh makeup just in case it was baby day. (Yeah, I was that person, putting on mascara in between contractions, so I’d look good in pictures lol). I wasn’t too convinced that it was baby day though, since the midwife told me that I might have some more cramping from the cervical check, so I thought and hoped that’s all it was.

I noticed the contractions were regular at about 2:45, and by 4:30 I decided to text David to tell him he should probably head home just in case it was early labor. He skipped practice and headed home. I texted my doula a screenshot of my contraction timer app at 5 with contractions about 4 and a half to 3 min apart and lasting 35-50 seconds long. I texted the midwife at 5:20 when my contractions were about 2 and a half to 3 min apart and lasting about 45-55 seconds long. Midwife suggested I try to take a bath, eat something and get some rest if I can. I ate a little something (starting to get more difficult with contractions), and I tried to relax in the bath some. That seemed to help shorten the contractions (about 30-40 seconds long), but not really space them out (about 2:10-2:30 seconds apart).

The midwife asked at that point (6:30) if I think this was it, and I said yes. Since the contractions had shortened some though, she suggested we could wait. My doula called to gauge how I was doing, and after hearing me through a contraction, she decided she should probably go ahead and come over just in case. She got there at about 7 and could tell I was in active labor. I had a hard time myself categorizing what stage I was at, since the whole time I was able to make decisions and talk in between, which made me think that maybe I wasn’t as close as I was.

Me and my doula

My doula (Daniela) was a Godsend. I was so glad to have her there with me to help me through contractions, because up to that point, I was laboring on my own. I had even told my husband to go ahead and take our son for a little trick or treating, because I didn’t want him to miss out.

Checked in with the midwife again at 7:40, and my contractions were about 2:30-3 min apart and getting longer again (roughly 50 seconds to a min long). I wasn’t sure if I needed to head in yet (I really hated interrupting people’s Halloween plans and taking them from taking their kids trick-or-treating). So we gave it until about 8:10, then we decided we needed to start packing up to head to the birth center, so I texted the midwife and told her that I think it was time for us to go.

Unfortunately, when I texted her, she was out with her kids trick-or-treating, so she asked if I could wait 20-30 minutes before heading out (so she would have time to head back from trick or treating then head to the birth center). When she asked if I could wait 20-30 min, I said “I guess” not having any idea how much longer I had. If we had left then, we would have made it. But things progressed quickly while we waited the 20-30 min. Contractions were getting really intense, and I had my bloody show during that waiting period (maybe around 8:30). I was literally crawling out of the bathroom and couldn’t quite make it out into the bedroom. We started to pack up into the car, and my body was starting to push (although I was trying my best NOT to).

By the time we got the toddler and myself packed into the car and left, it was about 8:55. Knowing my body was already pushing on its own, I knew once I got into the car that we wouldn’t make it to the birth center (it’s about a 25-30 min drive, and my first birth was only 20 min of pushing, and I expecting this to be even shorter). I made sure I had a Chux pad in the passenger seat and a labor-friendly outfit on (a maxi skirt, not the pencil skirt or Princess Leia costume I had planned to wear that night lol).

My husband drives slow usually. He goes the speed limit, tops. But tonight, he drove like a madman, whipping around corners and going 90 on the highway while my doula coached us on speakerphone, assuring me that I would make it to the birth center and have the water birth that I’d dreamed of. I knew that wasn’t happening. I was in the passenger seat on all fours, my arms resting on the console, facing my husband, and my ass in the air, to work against gravity and try my best not to push, even though my body was pushing on its own at that point. My doula had me doing horse lips and saying “pa-pa-pa,” which is supposed to help slow things down when baby is coming fast. David and the doula kept telling me that we could make it, and I told them no, I could feel the baby, I could feel the head crowning.

I started to reach around to pull down my panties, as they were in the way, and I needed to feel what was going on down there. David freaked out and shouted to the doula over the phone, “SHE’S TAKING OFF HER CLOTHES!!” The doula repeated him, equally as freaked out, “SHE’S TAKING OFF HER CLOTHES??”

Born in the car |

Sure enough, quickly her head was out. I shouted that I feel her head. Then I knew that the next push, out slid her shoulders and the rest of her body. It happened. She plopped into my skirt/the seat of the car, and I yelled, “She’s here! She’s out! There’s a baby in the car!” and I quickly scooped her up, pulling her against my skin, wrapping her in my skirt as I heard her let out her first sweet cry.

After that, I was just so calm and happy. The doula told David to pull over and call for an ambulance. He began to pull off the highway, looking for a place to stop. I told him no, just keep going to the birth center. The baby and I were both fine, and I didn’t want another bill from an ambulance and a subsequent bill when they send us both to the hospital. I already paid for the birth center, we’re going there, damn it.

David saw how calm I was and decided it was fine to go ahead and get back onto the highway and continue heading to the birth center. He called the midwife and told them, calmly, that the baby was here and we were heading their way still. They thought he was joking. He called again a few minutes later, and this time they could hear the baby crying in the background and suddenly realized he wasn’t joking. Our baby really was born in the car.

We got to the birth center at 9:20, unloaded myself and Finley from the car, and birthed the placenta at the birth center. Got ourselves cleaned up, ate a meal, and we relaxed in a nice herbal bath before heading home (we were at the birth center for about 4 hours).


Finley was born in the car going 90 mph on Halloween night at 9 p.m. She weighed in at 7 pounds and measured 19 inches long. She came in on her own time. The birth certainly wasn’t the way I had hoped or pictured it going, but it is what it is.

It’s been a week and a half now since Finley was born, and it’s taken me some time to process it all. I’ve thought a lot about what we should have done differently. I wish we had just made the call to leave sooner and not wait until the last minute. If it weren’t happening on Halloween night, I think we all would have made the call that I should leave sooner just in case. But hindsight is 20/20.

Looking back on the details and writing it all out has helped me bring some closure to it all. I know everyone wants to hear the story and think it’s a funny and exciting. Sure, it’s a hell of a story, and what a cool birthday to have, but laboring/pushing in the car while David whips around corners and speeds down the highway was awful. It wasn’t the birth I had planned for, and this being our last kid, I’m really sad that this is how it all unfolded, and I will never get the birth I wanted.

I know these things don’t always go as planned, but really, don’t say that to me after what I’ve been through. I will straight punch you. Because things couldn’t have strayed much further from the plan than that. I feel a little traumatized by it still. When I drive down that stretch of roads now, I relive it.

PS, the Chux pad didn’t help much. It was flimsy and moved, and ended up only covering about a quarter of the seat after everything was said and done. My poor new car, that I just bought 3 months ago. It ended up looking like a crime scene. They cleaned it up some at the birth center that night, and David gave it another round of cleaning 6 days later. It’s not very noticeable now, but it still needs professional help. Guess I should have laid down an old towel instead (my tip to you, for your “just in case” planning!).

On a side note, I’m currently watching Talladega Nights. Remember in the beginning, how Ricky Bobby was born in a car, speeding down the highway? Seemed like a fitting movie for us.


MommyCon Austin 2017 Schedule and Giveaway!

It’s that time of year again, mamas! MommyCon Austin is a little less than two weeks away, and I am so excited! I am so lucky to have been invited to be a part of the blogger collective again, and I get to be a part of the media team for the VIP session that Friday as well (more on that later!). AND I have a pair of tickets to giveaway too! Check out my Instagram @sharonisamom for the ticket giveaway (good luck!). The giveaway closes on Wednesday, May 24, 2017, and a random winner will be drawn to win a free pair of tickets for MommyCon, so bring a friend to share in the fun!

MommyCon vendors |

The general admission day is on Saturday, June 3 at the Austin Convention Center. There will also be VIP sessions available the day before on June 2 as well. If you don’t have a ticket yet, you can use my code SHARONISAMOM17 to get $5 off your general admission ticket (you can use the code for any of the MommyCon locations, not just Austin!).

I always seem to luck out on the timing for MommyCon. Last year, my husband had a trail race in the area that he wanted to do that evening, so our trip worked out perfectly then. And this year my husband and son will be going to San Antonio (not far from Austin) for my nephew’s graduation that weekend, so we just have an extra excuse to be staying in Austin for the weekend. Plus it’s our anniversary weekend, so we’ll get to spend an extra day in Austin having fun and eating lots of delicious food. So looking forward to it!

If you’ve never heard of MommyCon before, I’ll let you in on the details! Last year was my first time at MommyCon, and I loved it! It’s all about breastfeeding, babywearing, cloth diapers and more! It’s a great place to find your new Mom BFF and be surrounded by a group of like-minded mamas. There are a wide variety of sessions to check out, a ton of awesome vendors, and at the end, they giveaway thousands of dollar worth of awesome baby gear! Plus the swag your get in your general admission bag is fantastic too. You get so much for the price of your ticket!

They just released their finalized schedule for MommyCon too, and I’m going to go over a few highlights of the sessions I’m most looking forward to below.

Let’s start with Friday’s VIP session: Not Your Momma’s Baby Shower! This VIP session will be so much fun, with a 1950s ice cream parlor theme, complete with food, games, prizes and more! Plus Jessica Martin-Weber (AKA the Leaky Boob) will be hosting with Ameda. I am already Pinteresting 50s hairstyles and hoping I have a dress that will work. I Thought this VIP session is too perfect for me to pass up, since I’ll be 4-5 months pregnant come MommyCon! It’ll be a co-ed baby shower too, so both moms and dads are welcome. They’ll even have Ameda Aunties there to help if you are bringing your little ones too!

For Saturday, I think I’m most looking forward to the birth story circle. Pregnant or not, I have found that I love hearing other people’s birth stories and sharing mine as well. But since I will be pregnant at this year’s MommyCon, I am especially looking forward to this session!

Another one of my favorites on the schedule for Saturday is the session on Natural Remedies for Common Childhood Ailments. I love having natural options to try and help my little one feel better instead of going straight to medicine. Heck, even if I wanted to do the medicine, it always tastes so gross, my child spits it right out anyway. So I am looking forward to hearing more natural ways to prevent and treat things like ear infections, sleep problems, reflux, colic and more!

And that’s just a taste of what’s on the schedule! All sort of topics will be covered, like Breastfeeding and Pumping Q&A, potty training, cloth diapering 101 and much more! Check out the full schedule below!

MommyCon Austin 2017 Schedule |

Don’t forget to use my code SHARONISAMOM17 for $5 off your ticket and check out my giveaway to win a free pair of tickets to MommyCon over on my Instagram @sharonisamom! Hope to see you guys there!

MommyCon Giveaway

MommyCon Austin is only one month away! It is going to be my first MommyCon, and I could not be more excited! The general sessions are on Saturday June 25, and VIP sessions are on Friday June 24th. I am practically chasing my tail with all the excitement, and I am so happy that I get to be a part of the MommyCon blogging team as well!

MommyCon Growing together
Is this not the coolest graphic ever?? I am obsessed!

First off, what is MommyCon? It’s a convention series all about natural, gentle parenting. I’ll be going to the one in Austin, but MommyCon will also be in many other cities across the nation. With many awesome speakers on the lineup, the biggest focus will be on birth, breastfeeding, babywearing and cloth diapering. In other words: all the crunchy-mama things I love! So of course I am going!

MommyCon 2016 |

Tickets are only $45, but you can use code SHARONISAMOM16 to get $5 off your ticket.

MommyCon will be a great opportunity to connect with other like-minded mamas, moms-to-be (and dads too!), discuss, learn, and grow together. AKA build your tribe! This will be a great opportunity to make some new friends. One thing I love most about motherhood is the friendships I’ve made. Parenting can be tough at times, but it’s great having friends to talk to and laugh with who are going through the same things as you and understand where you’re coming from.

MommyCon swag |
Here’s an example @itstheaveragejo shared on Instagram of the general admission swag bag she got at MommyCon Chicago. Swag will be different city-to-city, but I love seeing examples!

Oh, and the swag. How have I not mentioned all the glorious swag you’ll get to take home?? You get a bag full of cool baby gear with your general admission ticket. If you sign up for additional VIP sessions too, you’ll get even more swag to take home from each VIP session you attend as well. I won’t lie. I was up until 3:15 a.m. one night pouring over MommyCon hashtags on Instagram and drooling over the loot ladies went home with. PLUS each event ends with $10,000 worth of giveaways! Yes, I too am gawking at that number on my computer screen. You may want to pick your jaw back up off the floor at some point though!

MommyCon giveaway | sharonisamom.comNow for what you’ve all been waiting for… I’m giving away TWO tickets to MommyCon Austin! Head over to my Instagram (@sharonisamom) for your chance to win. The giveaway will close at 11:59 p.m. on June 3, so make sure to get your name in the drawing! Good luck, mamas!

For more info on MommyCon, check out their website at

Ellis Turns One!

It has been a busy couple of months! We sold our house and moved in with the in-laws in late February, stayed there for five weeks and moved again into our new home in early April. Still unpacking and settling in, but we love our new home! Ellis just turned one a few days ago, and we enjoyed having everyone over for his Star-Wars themed birthday party. He was born on Star Wars Day (May 4th), so this was the obvious party theme. I spent plenty of time researching party ideas on Pinterest and ended up using a couple (saving some ideas for next year, as we didn’t end up having time to get to all of it this time around lol). We had a Darth Vader piñata, and I made light saber bubble wands for party favors. Ellis was spoiled and got lots of great gifts from friends and family.

One year update |
I can’t believe this little man is ONE already!!

One-year update:

We haven’t been to the pediatrician yet for official numbers on height and weight, so I’ll have to add that update later. Ellis has 7 teeth, and the 8th should be here any minute now too (I see it, it just hasn’t quite cut through the gums yet!). He is a busy, busy boy, always getting into things (and learning new things to get into every day it seems lol). Babyproofing the cabinets is next on our list! He likes to lift the lid on the diaper pail and put things in there or take things out. Same with the trash can and recycling can. Found his frozen teething toy in the recycling last night, in fact lol. He likes getting into the cabinets under the sink and pulling out my makeup brushes one-by-one, then he puts them in his mouth and crawls around with them. If I try to stand in front of the cabinets to block him, he still pulls at them furiously and cries at me. Seriously, babyproofing the cabinets needs to happen likerightnow.

He still mostly crawls around and cruises along (walking as he holds along the furniture). Over the last month though he’s been standing by himself (not holding onto anything) more and more often and for longer periods of time. Right after he turned 11 months he even started taking his first steps (4 or 5 in a row). Anything is a push toy if you put your mind to it! He loves pushing around our chairs and bar stools in the kitchen and rearranging the furniture lol.

He is very talkative, although his only real words right now are “mama” and “dada.” He has gotten much better around new people, and he’s always the flirt when we’re at a 08-22-14-12-25-26_YouLingerie_Ad_1_300x250restaurant or out shopping. He’s such a cutie, full of smiles and personality. He’s learned how toys/games work, and now he plays with things differently. It’s like a little light switch flipped on, and now he’s figured these things out. I love seeing him concentrate and watching those little gears in his brain turning. His bucket of shape sorters, for example, he used to just enjoy dumping them out them putting them in his mouth and crawling around with it. Now he has started to put them INTO the bucket. And his stacking rings/donuts, he used to grab and crawl around with, and now he’s learned to stack them on the stick/base. He got a cool wooden toy (Melissa & Doug Pound and Roll Tower) for his birthday, and he figured out right away how to push/hit the balls in the holes, watch it roll down and come out, grab the ball, and put it back in the top to do it again.

He still loves his jumper, and we use our awesome swing on the occasion he has trouble falling back to sleep during the night (he usually falls asleep nursing no problem though). He loves fruit, especially strawberries, apples and pears.

One Year Update |
Playing with one of the bubble wand light sabers from his birthday party

We’re still doing all that crunchy stuff too. Still in cloth diapers, and he wears his Baltic amber teething necklace all the time. We still co-sleep some (he starts out the night in his crib next to our bed, and he usually ends up sleeping in our bed after he wakes up during the night to nurse. Most nights he wakes 1-2 times during the night to nurse, although there was one night that he slept through the night (it was amazing lol). I’m sure he’ll start sleeping through the night on a more regular basis eventually, but we’ll let him get there on his own terms.

We made it to the big 1-year mark for breastfeeding, and it doesn’t look like we’ll be stopping anytime soon either. The World Health Organization recommends 2 years, so that’s the next big goal. No need to rush/wean him until he’s ready. I’m so amazed at how far we’ve come on this journey, and I am proud that we never had to supplement with formula, and I was even able to donate breastmilk for a couple of babies in need over the last year.

Ellis turns one |

We’ve still been enjoying taking him to Babygarten classes at the library every week, where we sing nursery rhymes, read books, play and do crafts. We’ll keep doing those this summer too. Planning on doing some baby sign language classes and swim lessons next month too. And when I find the time, I need to plan our summer vacation (Portland).

And we’re making another trip to Austin in June for MommyCon (woo-hoo!). It’s all about gentle/natural parenting and birth, all good crunchy mama things. Tickets are only $45 (it’s on June 25), but you can use code SHARONISAMOM16 to get $5 off your ticket. Would love to see you there! Keep an eye out on the blog for more details on MommyCon. Can’t wait!

10 month update

It’s been a while! The last two months have been a real whirlwind of change for us. Since we’re down to one income right now, we had to sell the house and downsize. I’ve been out of work since December, and we put the house on the market at the end of October. It was slow over the holidays with showings, but it picked back up in January, and we accepted an offer near the end of January and closed on our house a month later. Since then we’ve been staying with the in-laws until we close on our new home. We’ll be staying with the in-laws for 5 weeks before we are able to move in April 3. The same weekend we’re moving we’ll also be taking Ellis for his first road trip to San Antonio for a wedding. Lordy! Wish us luck. All of that to say we have been busy, busy!

10 month update |
My little man is getting so big!

Ellis is now 10 months old. Can’t believe we will be celebrating his first birthday party in less than two months!! Speaking of birthday parties, have you seen the adorable parties some kids have? I know my sister-in-law is something of a party wizard. My niece’s birthday parties had the best decorations, and EVERYTHING matches the theme. Stuff I wouldn’t even think of. I am just not that talented. She had a Frozen birthday party one year, and I thought to myself, “Jeez! My wedding won’t even look this pulled-together!” And my sweet friend Catherine threw her baby girl a wonderful first birthday party a couple months ago, and everything was so cute. There were even fun activities for the kids and a photo op! The pressure is real. Don’t go getting your hopes up from me though lol. Ellis was born on Star Wars Day (May 4), so at least we have a theme down. Like forever lol. Still have to figure it all out though…

Ellis is doing better and better with solids every day. He’s been eating two solid meals a day plus a snack, and we are working on this week increasing to three solid meals a day plus snacks. We are still doing baby-led weaning. We give him purees sometimes too, but mostly he’d rather have food that he can grab and feed himself. He’s tried a lot of new foods, and we’re starting to ease him into eating more of what we eat too. Some new things he has tried: spaghetti, avocado on sprouted grain toast, dairy-free yogurt with chia seeds mixed in, pineapple, pear, eggplant, butternut squash… Finding so many great BLW meal ideas on Pinterest too. Thinking we’ll try and make the spinach oatmeal pancakes for him this week!

At 10 months, Ellis is crawling all over the place. He is always on the move! He cruises all the time and climbs. Sometimes while he’s preoccupied with putting a toy in his mouth, he doesn’t realize he’s standing on his own. He’ll stand there for about 10 seconds before realizing and sinking back down to crawl again. We think he’ll be walking soon! He is always getting into stuff, whether he’s trying to get to the dog water/food or opening cabinets and taking my makeup brushes out. He just cut two more teeth up top a couple weeks ago, so now he has 6 teeth!

He’s so bright, and I love to see him learn “new tricks.” He waves, claps, high fives, says “mama” and signs for milk. Sign language is great to enable babies to communicate with us better when their oral vocabulary isn’t quite there yet, especially for babies 8 months to 2 years.

This little man has changed our lives so much. I love getting to be his mama. He is such a sweet baby boy. Don’t know how we got to be so lucky! He is growing up so fast already. Looking forward to seeing what his future holds! He makes us smile every day.

Six Month Update


Time has really flown by with my little man! I can’t believe he’s 6 months old now. He is definitely a mama’s boy. He loves spending time with me, laughing at me, cuddling/snuggling with me. He also loves when we’re breastfeeding and we both fall asleep and end up taking an afternoon nap together. (Not always so great when I have work to get back to, but it can be hard to stay awake breastfeeding when I haven’t had enough sleep, and my dad has stolen my coffee lol). Ellis still loves baths and kicking and splashing us. He is so curious and smart.

Six monthsWe’ve been going to Babygarden every week at the library, and he loves when I read to him and do nursery rhymes and songs with him. His cousin and a couple of friends are in the class with us too- love it!

Ellis cracks me up and always knows how to make me smile. Every day I think how lucky I am that I get to be his mama. Motherhood has been a wonderful journey. It is a lot of work and has its challenges and lack of sleep, but it is so worth it.

Ellis had a big month! Within eight days, he hit four milestones:
-October 18: sitting up
-October 24: cut his first tooth
-October 25: rocks back and forth on hands and knees
-October 26: cut his second tooth

badgeBut the biggest milestone of all for both of us… 6 months exclusively breastfed! I am so happy to have reached this goal. Next goal will be to make it to the 1 year mark and take it from there. Yesterday we just took a class on starting solids and Baby Led Weaning. Looking forward to sharing our love of fruits and veggies with our sweet little man as he explores new tastes and textures.