The wonderful Charmaine Worthy with her son Jackson (3) and Layla (8 months). Charmaine was born and raised in Los Angeles but joined us in Las Vegas on what would have been her Grandmother Lola's 100th birthday. She was mostly raised by her Grandmother and Las Vegas was a place she brought them to let loose growing up so it was a very fitting marker for her. Charmaine learned that her Grandmother was dying of cancer just as she learned she was pregnant with her son. As heart breaking as it was, she says that caring for her during her decline prepared her for motherhood in many ways. Charmaine had a couple scares that landed her in hospital during her first pregnancy that solidified her decision to birth at home. Her labor and delivery with Jackson went well and she said it was an amazingly intense experience. She gave birth to him in the dark of night in her bedroom and said one of the full circle moments of homebirth is children being born in the very spaces that they may have been conceived. Charmaine's Grandmother was able to meet Jackson when he was born and when she passed away 4 months later, Charmaine was at peace with her loss.
Her second pregnancy was much more complex than her first. Charmaine slipped into a deep depression while pregnant and went through a time so dark she contemplated suicide. She didn't feel like anyone she trusted was able or willing to help her. Her biggest blow came when she was 32 weeks pregnant and she received a letter from her midwifery practice letting her know that they were dropping her as a client because they didn't have the resources to take care of her and her "behavior". She went from painfully depressed to devastated and had to pursue the amazingly difficult task of finding a new midwife who would not only take her on but that she would feel comfortable enough to trust with such intimate privilege as her birth. Layla was born at home without complication and took to breastfeeding without issue but it took several months for Charmaine to feel less depressed. She says that to this day she looks at her daughter sometimes and wonders what was the darkness that overcame them.
Charmaine says she never really wanted to be a mom and her own family and friends have never seen her as a mother and to this day, don't see her as a motherly figure. She wants to stake her claim and shout, "I am a mom!". In addition to owning her motherhood, she wants to celebrate her Grandmother, she's doing this for her and for her beautiful children.