By Keith Bennett
Shannon Bennett, the host of More About Birth has an interesting life. She is a midwife and has participated in over 550 births. That in itself is an amazing statistic but that’s just the births. That is not all the prenatal and postpartum appointments. Her relationship with her clients starts 8-12 weeks into their pregnancy and ends 8 weeks after the baby is born. Yet some calls keep coming in even after the last 8 week appointment.
She also hosts a 4 hour Childbirth class and her own specialty two hour Natural Pain Relief for Labor class once a quarter that all her clients are included in. This last winter she wrote a completed a 73 page photo illustrated manual about pain relief for labor that is now available on her webpage. Her next task is to finish her online class that will soon be available world wide on the web.
Shannon is a home birth midwife. Her official title is Certified Professional Midwife, Licensed midwife. What does that mean exactly? Well, she delivers babies in her client’s homes. The idea of a birth at home is not normal in the minds of many people in our world today yet, if you were to talk to these woman and their husbands they would tell you that experiencing their birth at home was amazing. Shannon would tell you that home birth is not for everyone, she even has friends who work as OB nurses in the hospital. She would tell you that she is not at all opposed to hospital birth, in fact she recommends hospital births all the time because some clients need that type of care. At the same time she makes no apologies for being a home birth midwife. Delivering babies at home naturally is her passion.
Shannon’s home is her base of operation and her upstairs office is the meeting place for most of these appointments. She does home visits with each and every client and she says it helps her to understand the rhythm of their homes and gives her the lay of the land so she knows were their home is when it’s 2 am and she is driving to the birth. That in itself is game changing. She will be caring for them in their home as their future is born. As she says, “Each birth is a once in a lifetime event.”
Shannon’s family shares in this adventure as she comes and goes in the middle of the night and returns sometimes many hours later. Four to five births a month is a full load for a midwife.
The podcast hosted by Shannon also includes her cohost Angie Hansen who is her student midwife in training. If you ask Shannon why a podcast?, she will most likely tell you three things: 1)to connect with her clients and help prepare them for their birth, 2) to expand her reach in the world of all things birth so that as she gets older and does less births she can continue it’s growth. 3) She wants to raise awareness in all areas of a birth and the incredible resources available to every mom, family member and future midwives out in the world.
I am impressed with her knowledge, the guests she has on her podcasts, and her relationship with her co-host and the life that happens when they are together. My roll has been as executive producer, and I have been behind the scenes of every podcast, including the edits.
Shannon does not consider herself a public person, social media personality, or a voice for Midwifery. She really just loves everything birth. This podcast happened because her heart is right. She lives and breathes babies, mamas and all things birth and educates herself all the time about the topic.
Each month she and Angie sit down and plan topics, guests and ideas for the podcast. It is mostly shot from her dining room table and is released on YouTube as well as on a number of audio podcast locations.
Shannon has a podcast page on her nc-midwifery.com web page. A fun fact I learned about Shannon and Angie was that neither one of them want to be on cameras. The idea of a audio podcast was no big deal but video on the other hand was a topic that took time. Once you see the video podcast you will know why I pushed them this direction as the producer.
The average podcast set up and take down time is two hours. This includes the lights and camera set up as well as the audio. The guests arrive about 10-15 minutes before the interview. Shannon serves them coffee or tea and they talk about the conversation they are about to have. I get to give a few instructions about the format, remind them that the camera represents friends, family and new listeners. We all take a deep breath as I start the camera, hit the record button and begin the intro.
Shannon has been great to work with. She cares deeply about her co-host, her guests and the topic at hand. She gets more comfortable on camera each time and is growing as a host. Her co-host Angie is growing as well and has a keen ability to dive in deep on topics and cover for Shannon when needed. They have way more fun than you have seen on camera. We posted one blooper so far on the YouTube channel and it captures so much of their relationship. It is the perfect behind the scenes moment so check it out.
Their have been podcast days were we shoot two podcasts at the same time. They release each week on Tuesday, usually mid morning. Shannon then goes back up to her office to work with a client and Angie goes with her to continue to grow and learn this amazing trade. The podcast focuses on birth topics, birth issues and other aspects in around birth from chiropractic care for baby, birth pools for water birth, postpartum depression to so much more.
Shanon also says being a podcaster has been eye opening and has stretched her a lot. But adding it to her weekly routine has enriched her life in many ways, from her past clients feeling reconnected, her relationship with her co-host and the connection with her special guests as well. It has fueled her passion for birth too. Yes she may be adding a podcast to an already busy life but if it makes an impact, opens new doors and comes with coffee, chocolate and incredible fun moments she plans to continue the journey.
I will end with my favorite comment so far that came from her mother who watched a podcast of More About Birth on the YouTube channel for the first time. She said, “I did not realize how smart my daughter was, I’m impressed.”
So that’s the life of a podcaster. It for sure comes with some moments to treasure. Thanks for listening and dial up a podcast today.
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Check out Life’s Journey Productions: http://bit.ly/31UP509
More About Birth podcast: http://bit.ly/2T5i25w