Homebirth is a safe and wonderful alternative to giving birth in a hospital. In the familiar environment of your own home, Birthwell Midwives create a nurturing and loving space allowing your body’s birthing rhythm to take its natural course, while safeguarding your privacy, emotional well-being and respecting your personal preferences.
Birth is a natural process and Birthwell Midwives believe that the mother is in charge of matters regarding her birth, body, and baby. The mother is considered a collaborative partner and we respect each individual situation.
Our highly skilled Midwives will provide comprehensive prenatal and postpartum care and are qualified to care for the newborn.
Birthwell Midwives offer complete holistic care while educating and guiding mothers to make the best choices and decisions for their babies and their journey through pregnancy and birth.
We look forward to serving you.
Click on our Midwife’s names to view their Biographies:
Mariposa Oxenberg RN, MS, CNM
With a passion for nurturing women and families and a love of babies, Mariposa Oxenberg began her journey into midwifery in 1996 when, after graduating Pine Manor College in Boston, she witnessed a beautiful birth. Mesmerized and enchanted with the miracle of life, she embarked on a path that would take her through the many facets of birth in America with a goal of learning as much as she could while absorbing the wisdom of great teachers like Ina May Gaskin, Susun Weed, the great midwives at the Midwife Alliance of North America conferences, Baba Tunde Olatunji and her mentors Quint Lange (percussion) and Marina Alzugaray in midwifery.
Mari trained at Babies By the Sea Birth Center in Key West Florida where she also founded Birthwell Doula Services and taught prenatal yoga. When her friend and colleague Dr. Kelley Valle became pregnant, she approached Mari with the idea to create a Prenatal Yoga Video so that all women could benefit from the Integral Prenatal Yoga class Mari instructed. Together, they birthed Birthwell Yoga for Pregnancy and Childbirth Preparation that has sold on Amazon.com ever since.
In 2001, Mari graduated from nursing school in the Florida Keys and moved to the Berkshire mountains in Western Massachusetts. There she began her journey as a labor and delivery nurse at Fairview Hospital in Great Barrington. Working nights on the labor unit Mari discovered how to be a “nurse-doula” and navigate hospital protocols while allowing her patients gentle and conscious birth experiences. Mari relocated to Los Angeles in 2006 and established Birthwell Los Angeles Doula Service and continued to support women as a birth doula while also working as a maternity RN in various hospitals around the city.
Finally, it was time to pursue her dream of becoming a midwife and after a 2 year homebirth apprenticeship she enrolled in the Midwifery Institute at Philadelphia University. Mari received her Masters in Science in Nurse-Midwifery in 2010 and acquired a taste for research. Her thesis looked at “The effects of prenatal yoga on perineal integrity in childbirth”. This inquiry stemmed from her observation of her prenatal yoga students’ births whereby she noticed a high number of women birthed over intact perineum’s compared to her clients who did not attend prenatal yoga class.
Living in beautiful Topanga Canyon and now a mother herself, she is joined by her mentor Marina Alzugaray, Certified Nurse Midwife, as they transform Birthwell into a complete childbirth service. Using her expertise to specialize in homebirth and water birth, Mari strives to support and guide women though this most powerful time of their lives with love, confidence and grace so, as they transform through their powerful birth experience, they can be excellent and confident mothers.
Marina Alzugaray R.N.P., C.N.M., M.S.
Marina is an innovative Natural Childbirth and Holistic Midwifery Educator as well as a Healer Midwife with over 30 years of experience. She began her alternative health career in Santa Barbara during the 70′s as holistic health modalities were being integrated into care. In the 80′s, she started to attend births as a Certified Nurse Midwife (Certified Nurse Midwife) in homes and hospitals, pioneering water births and developing the American AquaNatal program which now includes 100 instructors worldwide. Midwife Marina is a frequent speaker in National and International midwives conferences, a MANA board member, and an author.
Her wisdom is featured in “Into These Hands”, a book edited by Simkins Certified Nurse Midwife. in 2011, detailing the lives of twenty five midwives and their childbirth legacy. Marina’s education includes a Masters of Science from UCSF where she was given the Chancellors Award for her research on positions for birthing known as “The Birth Dance’. In addition, she has a BA from Antioch University Santa Barbara, is certified as a Nurse Practitioner, and is a Registered Nurse although she states that her “greatest teachers have been all the mothers, babies and families who have shared their sacred, loving, and peaceful births” with her to this day. She has been invited to over 3,000 births in homes, birth centers and hospitals. Ms. Alzugaray is now a grandmother and lives with her husband in Pacific Palisades, CA. She loves nature and is excited to join Birthwell L.A. in facilitating the empowerment of birth experiences by sharing her passion about healthy reproductive education through the use of art as a cross-cultural educational form.
For more information on Midwifery care and natural homebirth please go to: http://www.mothersnaturally.org/birthAtHome/index.php
New study released by the American College of Nurse Midwives