We are excited to introduce you to Callie Corless, one of our Birth Boot Camp instructors. She teaches birth classes in Flower Mound, TX. Callie is a woman of many talents. From doula work to childbirth education, to prenatal fitness, she has so many skills that can help make your birth and pregnancy amazing. Call her if you need a birth class in Flower Mound, TX!
I’m Callie! I’m originally from California, I have three little girls, I love to dance, I am a Brene Brown junkie, and I’m a trained doula, and a Birth Boot Camp Instructor teaching birth classes in Flower Mound, TX. I’m also certified in Pre/Postnatal fitness and occasionally teach prenatal dance classes to help women develop confidence in their ability to give birth while encouraging strength and optimal positioning of their baby for birth.
I had an interesting journey through my own births- my first was a hospital induction with pitocin and an epidural in under six hours. I had read and researched and wanted a natural hospital birth, but wasn’t sure how to get it! I took a hospital class but didn’t feel it helped me much beyond the reading I had done. I had talked to my provider and asked him before the birth what his episiotomy rate was since I had read that was a good question to ask, and he’d answered that he would do one if I needed it.
Then he quickly assured me everything would be fine, which didn’t leave me feeling great, but I couldn’t put my finger on why. I also asked him about walking epidurals (which I’ve since learned is the mythical unicorn of birth options) because I wanted to be able to still feel what I was doing if I needed pain medication, and he said that was no problem, just don’t push the button for additional medication and it will be fine! (Also a birth unicorn).
Things went fairly smoothly but I didn’t feel like it was quite the experience I wanted. He ended up giving me an episiotomy before I even had the chance to speak up, I got an epidural but never pushed any buttons and couldn’t even lift my legs, which lasted for hours and hours after the birth, and since they broke my water pretty early I developed a fever that lasted after my birth and almost required antibiotics.
It wasn’t until later that I really accepted that things didn’t go at all as I wanted since I had my healthy baby and I thought that was all I needed. With my next baby I had a water birth at a birth center. I loved the midwife, but another midwife from a local hospital ended up having to cover her for my birth and there were still some things I didn’t feel great about at that birth, but overall it was very peaceful, quick, and my baby was born en caul (the water bag didn’t break until she was born) which was a neat experience.
With my last baby I felt much more set on a home birth, I found a wonderful midwife named Michelle Ray and had another water birth at home, and baby was born and we were all settled in by 9 in our own bed to go to sleep. I finally ended my birth journey with my lovely home birth and although it was my longest and hardest birth, I was very glad to have found a great provider who I felt so supported by.
She coached me as I delivered my own baby, and knew that I really wanted to feel in charge of my birth so she encouraged me to listen to my body through the process, push my baby out carefully-guided by my own hands, and lift my baby onto my chest as she was born…and it was such an amazing experience!
What first got you interested in birth work?
I first became very interested in EVERYTHING birth when I was pregnant with my own children. After my second baby I started to think that I wanted to be more involved then just reading about birth. I started thinking about the idea of becoming a doula but didn’t know how that would work having small children at home.
I joked about only being obsessed with birth because I was having children and had a bad case of baby fever, and that I’d really know if it was truly a passion if I was still interested when I was done having children. Well my last “baby” is 3 years old and I am just as much, if not more interested in birth and supporting families through their birth experiences!
Do you have any particular passions concerning birth?
I had Hyperemesis Gravidarum during pregnancy and it was the most difficult thing I ever experienced. It was the lowest I had ever felt up to that point and I struggled with depression. That experience taught me how much a difference it makes to have the support and resources to make it through pregnancy and birth! I often bring a basket of my favorite anti-nausea helps when I hear women battling morning sickness. I have a boatload of empathy for anyone in that position!
Through other support work I’ve done in my community, I’ve seen how grief and trauma affect women through birth experiences that are very similar to people in other situations. I am a huge advocate for self care and helping women process painful experiences (prevention is the best medicine!) and I love to support them and help brainstorm ideas to take action to do something that will fill their cup in the moment they’re in, taking each day one at a time.
I’m also a fan of prenatal exercise, in any form! When I was 16 I started taking Belly Dance classes. I continued through a few of my pregnancies and noticed a dramatic change in my labors from when I trained through pregnancy and when I didn’t. (hint: labor was a lot shorter when I danced through pregnancy!).
Ever since then I encourage women to find something that works for them, and do it! I enjoy teaching prenatal dance classes as well and love to show women how they can prepare their bodies for birth. It makes a world of difference in our health, our labors, and our recovery from birth.
Why did you choose Birth Boot Camp as your certifying organization?
I chose Birth Boot Camp partly because of the great community of other Birth Boot Camp Doulas and Instructors I saw in Dallas TX, where I currently live. I liked all the resources they had such as marketing materials, and the connections with other Birth Boot Camp birth workers they had which I felt was really important for me.
I honestly wasn’t 100% sure exactly how I’d feel about Birth Boot Camp when I was getting ready to attend training but I was blown away by how thorough and fun their curriculum was! I’m so glad I joined the Birth Boot Camp family and love being able to offer it to my clients.
Tell us a little about your Birth Boot Camp training experience- what did you like about it, where was it, who was your trainer?
As I mentioned before, I liked the community at Birth Boot Camp especially. I took a training in Dallas TX with and I loved learning about how we’d be teaching and what we could do to make our classes helpful and enjoyable for couples.
I really liked being able to do a variety of things at training too, such as practicing comfort measures with other instructors-in-training, learn exercise tailored to pregnancy, and practice relaxation exercises (a nice break throughout the day!) My trainers were Donna Ryan and Sarah Clark and they were so fun and each brought a unique perspective to the topics and teaching techniques.
How did your training help prepare you for teaching?
Spending the time studying before attending training helped me feel confident in my knowledge base and abilities as an instructor. Attending training taught me the skills to market my classes to couples, providers, etc. and how to teach subjects in class- including some that are a little more different- effectively.
Interested in a birth class in Flower Mound, TX? You can find Callie Corless at:
Website: The Swaying Doula
Birth Boot Camp Directory: https://birthbootcamp.com/directory/calliec/