Heather McLees-Frazier, M.A., LCCE, Owner, Childbirth Educator, and Birth Doula
With four active boys at home and one who lives on in my heart, my family is my bedrock as I attend births, teach Open Arms birthing classes, and complete my own prerequisites for nurse-midwifery. I wouldn’t trade it for anything!
As an undergraduate, I studied human anatomy and ten years later received my M.A. in women’s Renaissance history. In seven years as a doula and childbirth educator, I’ve walked the journey of birth with over four dozen families, as well as experiencing the birth of three of my own children. One of those babies, my fourth, was stillborn; now having had a subsequent healthy baby, I find it especially rewarding to work with people who are expecting again after a loss of any kind, and to walk alongside those whose outcome is uncertain.
My practice is rooted in trust: trust of the pregnant parent’s body and instincts, and trust that each child is born in the way that he or she needs. Birth to me is both sacred and mundane. It has the potential to be transformative to everyone who goes through it, yet it is also a normal life experience for half the world’s population! In the tension between these two sides of birthing, we find our footing as parents; we reshape how we view ourselves; we deepen our relationships with our partners; and we develop skills and strengths we can apply to challenges throughout the rest of our lives.
I believe that in birth, we face not only our ultimate challenge, but also our ultimate selves—the strongest, most vulnerable, most honest people we can ever be. Meeting that challenge can transform us into the best version of ourselves, as I have seen (and experienced myself) time and again. That is my favorite part of birth work: the moment when I see in someone’s face that they realize the strength and power has been in them all along.