YDGM Ep 004: Melissa Sandford

One of my biggest take-homes from this conversation is this.

Melissa explains, 

I think the mistake we make is that it’s not our births. It’s our children’s births. We don’t even know who they are yet. We don’t what their personality is. We don’t know anything about them. And it’s their journey and we’re just the vehicle for that. So being able to connect with them and let them have their journey is kind of really where it’s at. And when we try and make it about us, the birth, about making it look really pretty and trying to control it ... I don’t think we should do that.

Six natural births. Empowering, positive, and loved being pregnant. 

So much experience and so much wisdom.

“This is a bit of a fire-up statement. I can pretty much tell you, when I meet a pregnant woman whether they’re gonna end up having a safe and natural delivery or whether they’re gonna end up having an intervention. I can tell by the language they use because behind the language is their own fear. And when they start using disclaimers about well ‘I have to do what the hospital says, I have to do what the doctor says’. They’re relinquishing ownership of their bodies and control. When you use language like that and your emotions are really fear-based, you just have no hope.”

Melissa is a super mom. She’s amazing. She’s so grounded, full of wisdom, she’s full of life, and is an expert on motherhood, love, and enjoying life. Melissa moved from Melbourne, Australia to Devon, UK and lived there for nearly 20 years. She has six children, her eldest studying chiropractic in Australia. She met her first husband, who is British, in Australia, moved to Devon together and had her first three children who are now 23, 21, and 18.

Then, also while living in the UK, met her second husband, and has three children with him. They are 10, 7, and 5. 

Chiropractic has been a huge part of her adult life, started getting adjusted regularly as part of her healthy lifestyle. Her first husband was a chiropractor, with whom she separated, and then remarried again, who is also a chiropractor. 

Melissa is a woman who loved being pregnant. She fully embraced being pregnant, being a mother, having the mindset of ease, peace, and enjoying every aspect of it. She talks about each of her births in detail, what she discovered and learned about herself, her babies, and her body with each one. 

“With my last three, I actually didn’t see a midwife until a week before I was ready to give birth.”

“I’d done it before, I knew, when you tune into your body you know when you’re well and when you’re not well. I didn’t want to be poked and prodded and weaned on a stick all the time. I have a busy life and fitting that in was stressful and I didn’t want that for myself.”

Fear and stress in labor is what creates a cascade of complications and interventions. Melissa shares how she was able to keep the fear and panic out of the equation to embrace the natural process of birth. 

“Once you go into that panic place it’s all over, red-rover. When women are in that place it’s much more difficult to give birth. I think you shut down. Your contractions shut down. And so I was very aware not to put myself in that head space.”

“In our society we don’t place any value on your emotional and mental health. We don’t any value at all on the fact that your emotional state can affect your physical state. That’s just crazy.”

Melissa gives her wonderful story of natural birth, her strength, and she shares many tools for women to hear about having an empowering and beautiful birth. 

To reach out to Melissa, email her at melissaasandford@gmail.com

Tune in to hear more!

(This episode is brought to you by The Motherbox. To claim your 5% discount, email them and mention this podcast with code YDGM!)