Ep 91: Rick’s Fatherhood Story & Prenatal Care, Anxiety, and Baby Bonding with Rick Mulready

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I'm really excited to have the second dad on the podcast to share his perspective on pregnancy, labor and birth! (The first was my husband Falcon talking about the birth of our girls, which you can hear here!)

Rick Mulready is an online business owner and dad to an 18-month old girl with his wife Amy. He helps online experts maximize their expertise while growing, scaling and automating their business, and he's the host of The Art of Online Business podcast. 

Rick shares his experience of supporting his wife as she carried and delivered their baby. He talks about his anxiety in the early days of pregnancy, why he resisted reading other people's birth experiences, and how his wife's labor and delivery felt from his perspective.

He also talks about emotional struggles he and his wife experienced after his daughter arrived, including a struggle with sleep, depression & anxiety, breastfeeding, and lots of other great stories & advice about being a new parent.

In this Episode, You’ll Learn About:

  • How Rick and his wife realized that they wanted a baby after not discussing it before getting engaged
  • What he learned about his own anxiety while his wife was pregnant and attending prenatal appointments
  • Why Rick didn't want to read a lot of other people's experiences and stories before his wife's delivery
  • How he struggled to connect with his baby girl in the first four weeks after she arrived
  • Why it is so important to support your partner in pregnancy & the postpartum periods and why Rick is a big advocate of therapy
  • What Rick suggests for any expecting parent who is feeling anxious

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I want this podcast to be more than a one sided conversation. Join me on Instagram where we can connect outside of the show! Through my posts, videos, and stories, you'll get even more helpful tips to ensure you have a beautiful pregnancy and birth. You can find me on Instagram @drnicolerankins. I'll see you there!

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Ep 91: Rick's Fatherhood Story & Prenatal Care, Anxiety, and Baby Bonding with Rick Mulready

Nicole: In this episode of the podcast, we have another birth story, but this one is from a dad's perspective.

Nicole: Welcome to the All About Pregnancy & Birth Podcast. I'm Dr. Nicole Calloway Rankins, a board certified OB GYN who's been in practice for nearly 15 years. I've had the privilege of helping over 1000 babies into this world, and I'm here to help you be calm, confident, and empowered to have a beautiful pregnancy and birth. Quick note, this podcast is for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice. Check out the full disclaimer at drnicolerankins.com/disclaimer. Now let's get to it.

Nicole: Well, hello there. Welcome to another episode of the podcast. This is episode number 91. Thank you for being here with me today. So in this episode of the podcast, we have another birth story and this time it's from a dad's perspective. This is the second time that I've had a dad on. My husband, Falcon, was the first dad on the podcast back in episode number 81, but Rick's episode is actually the first episode that I recorded with the dad, because it took me a while to convince my husband to be on. Rick and I actually recorded this episode back in June. And Rick is Rick Mulready. He is the host of the Art Of Online Business podcast, and he is an industry leading expert in teaching online experts how to optimize their online business, to take them to the next level and his expertise as someone in the online business space is how I know Rick, because he has been a huge part of helping me be successful in this online business space.

Nicole: So I was really excited when Rick agreed to come on. His daughter, Maya is such a big part of his life and his work. He talks about her a lot, posts a lot on his Instagram about her. And we have a really great conversation. We talk about how his daughter's birth helped him to really clarify his purpose in his work. And he is just really, really honest and keeps it 100% real about everything, about being a dad, experiencing pregnancy and birth, including how, when he proposed to his wife, they actually hadn't discussed kids before he proposed, how he didn't want to see Maya actually be born and how he resented her his daughter for a little bit after she was born, just because of the disruption to things in his life. So you're really going to love this episode. It's just a fun conversation.

Nicole: There's lots of high moments and funny moments in it. And you are definitely going to want your partner to listen to it as well. Now, before we get into the episode, let me do a listener shout out. This is from it's too late for me underscore save yourself. Hope that's not the case. That is truly too late for you. I doubt that it is well, the title of the review is just speak to me all day. And the review says I'm obsessed with Dr. Nicole. She's lovely, down to earth, knowledgeable and judgment free. And on top of that, she has the most soothing and beautiful voice. I instantly feel calm when she starts speaking and even listen to her commercials, which is huge at fast forward with other pods and then a laughing emoji. Love the podcast. Thank you for being a part of my pregnancy journey.

Nicole: Well, thank you. Thank you for that really, really lovely review. I so appreciate you taking the time to leave that for me, it still amazes me when people say that my voice is soothing. I appreciate it, but I'd like never in a thousand years would have thought that. And I also appreciate you inviting me to be a part of your pregnancy journey by listening to this podcast. Now, this podcast is not the only resource that I have. Hint, hint here comes one of those commercials that you said you listened to. I also have a lot of free resources and downloadable guides on my website. If you go to drnicolerankins.com/resources, I have lots of great things for you there, including a guide to recommended prenatal test, a guide for managing pain and labor, warning signs to look out for after birth, a guide to help you get started with meditation, because I really strongly believe in meditation. So do head to that page and grab some of those free downloadable guides for you. Again, it's drnicolerankins.com/resources. All right, let's get into the birth story episode with Rick Mulready.

Nicole: Thanks so much, Rick, for agreeing to come onto the podcast and share your perspective as a dad, a dad birth story. I'm super excited about it.

Rick: I think you said that you told me before that I'm the first dad to be on the show. Is that right?

Nicole: We'll be one of the first dads, actually, since I first asked you, I got a really important dad to agree, my husband. So he will be the first dad.

Rick: Regardless. I'm honored to be on here. Thank you so much for having me

Nicole: Yeah for sure for sure. So why don't you start off by telling us a little bit about yourself and your work and your family?

Rick: Yeah, so I, my family, I'm the, I'm the dad of an amazing, uh, daughter who is, um, I don't want to say entering toddlerhood because she's been here for a little while, but she's entering that phase of, um, having an opinion. So he's thinking she is, uh, she's, she's just about to turn 18 months. Maya is my daughter and she's just the most thing ever. Yeah. She's just about to turn 18 months. She's in that, she's into everything she's tantruming, but it's, uh, you know, it's, it's a journey every single day for my wife and I just learning what she's going through and all that stuff. So it's, it's amazing. My wife is Amy. Um, and this is our first kid. Uh, our plan is our only kid. Um, but, uh, but that was, you know, that was sort of planned. That was our original intention, even before, even before her.

Rick: And I run my own business where I help online experts and I classified online expert like, like yourself, Nicole, where you have an online program, you have, uh, an expertise to share whether it's a course or a coaching program or a membership or something like that. And I help online experts, you know, optimize their business to six and seven figures, meaning let's get you there quicker. Let's remove the blind spots that so many of us have, we all have because we're so close to our business and let's remove those. Let's get some momentum in the business and get you creating the business that you really want to create. And one piece of clarity that I've gotten literally over the past two weeks or so, that is extremely relevant to this conversation here is I've been thinking a lot about my deeper purpose. You know, I've been, I've been in business now for six and a half years.

Rick: And for the first four years, I'm not afraid to say it was like, let's just make a lot of money. You know, I just wanted to hit that seven figure mark, because, you know, that's the elusive number, if you will, that gets thrown around so much. And I was, you know, very, very, um, grateful to be able to hit that in, in the first four years. And then when I hit it and I don't mean to diminish it in any way, but it was like, okay, awesome. Now what, and it was really that over the past couple of years, it's been a journey of all right, what is the real, what am I really doing, what I really want out of this business. It's always been about helping people grow their business, because I know when they are able to grow their business, they're able to improve so many different things in their life, more freedom.

Rick: You know, this, this just opens up so many different options of happiness and, and all that stuff. What I've gotten really clear on. And I, I, this is a lot to do with the birth of Maya is the deeper purpose of really why I do what I do is because I want to teach and help entrepreneurs grow their business and show them that it's not about hard work. It's not about, uh, let me, let me rephrase that. It doesn't mean that the harder you work or the longer hours that you work, that doesn't equate to the success of your business. I don't mean to say it's not hard work just saying like, it's like, and I've had this for so long myself. I equate longer hours harder work. And then the business is going to grow and revenue is going to increase as a result, when in fact that's not true.

Rick: Um, and there's so many, so many examples of that out there. And so what I want to teach and help entrepreneurs online entrepreneurs is that money is abundant and get rid of that limited thinking mindset because that's what I had. That's what I was, you know, and I talk about this with my wife a lot. That's what I saw growing up with my parents. I come from a very blue collar family. My dad was an auto mechanic. My mom was a, um, a pediatric nurse growing up. Then she transitioned into weird transition, but she went into a children's librarian. And so, you know, it was, you know, it was a, and I grew up in a small town in New Hampshire. So, you know, w and it was, it was all of that money doesn't grow on trees, you know, we can't afford that, all this other stuff.

Rick: And, you know, I look back on it now my, like I said, my dad was an auto mechanic. I remember and never forget coming, I was sitting in our living room and I saw him come in one day from, from work. And he was all hunched over. And he had his little igloo lunchbox thing in his hand, and he was all hunched over. And he was just so in so much physical pain from leaning over the cars and stuff all day that, you know, I just saw that pain and anguish on his face. And he was the, you know, that's where I learned. Like, it's, it's hard work to be making, to making money. And he wasn't making a whole lot of money in doing that. And, uh, he'd passed away when he was 55. I was 25 and he died of colon cancer. And I, and so he was diagnosed at 45.

Rick: So he fought it for 10 years. I am 100% convinced that the stress of his job, because it's a longer story, but the stress of his job and him losing his job shortened his life. And so that is my deeper purpose now is that I want to help online entrepreneurs grow their business more quickly, and so that they can show their kids that money is abundant, that it's not about longer hours and harder work. And that's the only way you're going to make more money, because I know that that's going to instill, you know, better self-esteem in them and a different, completely different money mindset and, and less anxiety. Cause I've, I struggled with anxiety. And so that's really what, and this all came about. Like I said, after the birth of Maya, and something I've been thinking a lot about. So a longer answer to your question there.

Nicole: Yeah, no, absolutely. And I think that's important, obviously my show is about pregnancy and birth, but I have a ton of doulas and online childbirth educators who listen to me as, as well. So I think that's a really great point. And you helped me as well. Part of, um, learning how to marry my purpose with, with being okay with an online business, all that stuff was kind of new to me. So I appreciate that. Yeah, of course. Yeah. So let's get into, um, the pregnancy and birth of Maya. So let's, let's start off with what was the experience of pregnancy from your perspective and, and prenatal care and doctor's visits and all that stuff.

Rick: I was freaked out. Just being honest, you know, if, if I could, it's going to put some, there's some things in perspective here, but I think it's important to talk about is that Amy and I did not do a good job communicating about whether we wanted a kid or not prior to us getting engaged.

Nicole: Oh, wow.

Rick: And so, yeah, I'll never forget this. We were at, so I proposed to her in Paris and I'll never forget we were at Napoleon's tomb. I forget what the, I think it's an F I forget what the actual building name is, but we were at Napoleon's tomb. We were outside. And the, like, we had just gotten engaged, like literally within the past couple of hours and the conversation of are we going to have kids I know kids are not. And I was like, she was absolutely. And we'd kind of talked about it, but we hadn't really come up with a firm like, this is what we're going to do.

Rick: And this is what we want. And I was a little wishy-washy at that point. And like, holy cow, it was like, well, probably should've had this conversation prior to a couple of couple hours ago. And so long story short is that we had decided that we would be very much open to it, but leaning more towards yes, absolutely. And then after time went on, it was like, hell yes, we're going to, you know, we, we want this. And so one of the most clear memories I have is, you know, looking down at the pregnancy tests and seeing the positive plus sign there. And it was like, holy cow, this is real. This is going to happen. And, um, and then it was just about, we have no idea what we're doing.

Nicole: Right. Right. How long were you guys married before you got, before she got pregnant?

Rick: We were married. Good question. We were married. So we got married in 2013, September of 2013, so,

Nicole: Oh, so you guys had a long time then to like, just be the two of you.

Rick: Exactly. Exactly.

Nicole: This was a big change, then?

Rick: Huge change, huge change. Cause we're both very independent people, like very independent. And so, um, but there was just, just such excitement and, you know, once we, once you found out Amy was pregnant and um, you know, then it was okay-first doctor's visit comes after what, I think it's, I don't know, seven, eight weeks or something like that, somewhere around there.

Rick: And then, um, and then, you know, confirmed that everything was looking okay. I hadn't understood. I didn't, I wasn't educated enough to be like, Oh, Amy's pregnant. Cool. Like, we're good. Like, all right, let's start the nine months sort of thing. But because it was like that first, you know, the, the, the first trimester is really critical, you know, to make sure that everything's okay and I didn't understand all that. And so I learned all of that and I was so excited, but then I was also, again, as I mentioned earlier, I've struggled with anxiety and depression for years, that's started to creep in because then I was worrying like, Oh, you know, she's going to be okay. Like, is the pregnancy going to stick? And I, I'll never forget that we sorted that. We made it through that period. And it was, I was, my brain was saying, all right, we're done, we're done that period.

Rick: But the anxiety kind of holds on to that and be like, well, are we out of the blue? Like, are we still okay? And so as the doctor's visits went on and I'll never forget, I literally have it on my phone. I saw it last week. The heartbeat, the first time you heard the heartbeat, like that was just like tears flowing down my face in the doctor's office. It was just so awesome. And, uh, our doctors were great just answering all the questions that we had. And then I don't remember when it actually happens. Um, well, you, you could tell me when we had the ultrasound around about 20 weeks or so. Yeah. The first time we had that, like that was just like, holy cow, like human being in there, there's a baby right there. And oh, by the way, we're having a girl, you know, and we did decide to, to, to figure out what the sex was.

Rick: Um, and, and we, that was just like such outpouring of emotion for both Amy and me, where it was just amazing and to see, and it was so cool because whenever we had, um, you know, any kind of ultrasound done or imaging or whatever, they printed out the images and we've kept all those. And there's, there's one that is a side. What do you call it? That just image from-

Nicole: Side-profile. Yeah.

Rick: Side-profile. Thank you. And it's like, if you look at Maya now, and then look at that from side profile from when I was first, like, it's like spot on, which was like, well, of course it is right. Cause you know, like it's the same, same kid, but it's just like so cool to see. And, um, just as time went on and the, and the doctor's visits, and then, you know, when you get down to, I think it, at that point, you're getting down to like, I don't know, eight, eight months or something like that, where the doctor's visits start to get like, like every week or something like that.

Rick: Um, then I started that's when I really, that the whole excitement and stuff actually started to kick into more of the anxiety again, because sleep is super valuable to me. And I have had asthma and eczema on my skin, my entire life and lack of sleep and stress are my two big, the two biggest things that affect my skin. And so my brain, again, my anxious brain started kicking in being like, you're not going to sleep for the first, you know, for you, you're going to have terrible sleep for a long time. This is what my, my brain was saying. You could have terrible sleep. And so your skin's going to be terrible and you're going to feel miserable and all this. And so like that negativity, if you will, started kicking in, because it was getting more real at that point, even though it had been real for a long time, I think like the impending due date, which my wife was due on December 1st, you know, it was, it was starting to sort of spiral in my head a little bit.

Rick: And I was just kinda like, you know, at that point I had friends sending books to me and stuff like that. And I didn't want to read any books.

Nicole: Interesting. Why is that?

Rick: I didn't want to, I didn't want to, well, I didn't want to read books because I wanted it to be my own experience. Amy and I did sign up for a hypnobirthing class. Um, it was her intention to, you know, try to do with no epidural or anything like that. And so we did this hypnobirthing class and I want to say it was like, I don't know, eight or 10 weeks or something like that, where we went every week. And, you know, I kind of, I resisted it at first because I didn't, I didn't understand it. I didn't really know. Especially at the very beginning, I'm like, I have no idea what hypnobirthing is and that whole process. And so I was very resistant to it, but then it took me a few sessions to kind of get into it and just understand what was going on and, and how this can help us. But then, you know, kind of as the time went on again, as I sort of ramped up the anxiety and we got closer, it kind of subsided again, because then the excitement took over.

Nicole: Gotcha. Gotcha.

Rick: And, um, yeah, so I don't know how far you want me to go, but that was sort of like leading up to it.

Nicole: Yeah. So do you feel like, you know, I feel like women have a lot of places where they can turn to, whether it's like online groups or friends or other women who've had babies and there's maybe not as much of a support structure for dads. So a couple of things. Do you feel like you were ever ignored in the prenatal visits? Like sometimes dads feel like I'm just sitting in the corner and the doctor doesn't even look at me. Did you ever feel like that was the case?

Rick: They did really well with me and acknowledging any questions that I had. I'm not afraid to speak up and ask questions. I'd never felt like that. They, all the doctors and, you know, we didn't have what we had a, we had a primary OB GYN, but it was, it was, we kind of rotated between two or three of them during the visits. And so it wasn't one person that we saw all the time, which we, you know, we kind of wished it was, but we tried to schedule it around when that person was seeing patients, but they were always really good with me and always answered questions and always, you know, you know, because like, like I looked at it like this, I mean, it's my wife, my wife is the priority here. Right. But at the same time, they were always like, hey, do you have any questions that we can answer? They did a really good job of understanding the process because this is what they do and understand that we have so many questions and they were always open to it. And they treated me really, really well at the process.

Nicole: That's great. That's great. Well then did you feel like, it sounds like you did at least have some friends you could talk to, or some sort of outlet for how you were feeling and processing things.

Rick: Not really, to be honest with you. You know, like, I mean going this, this sounds terrible, but I mean, it's reality. My biggest concern was, well, one of my big concerns was, hey, my business supports our family. What's going to happen when the baby comes and my time is completely split.

Nicole: That's a big deal.

Rick: Yeah. And so I did have some conversations with, uh, some friends of mine who had, um, young kids or, or even had been through it recently. And I'll never forget. They told me, dude, you are going to be so, you're to become so productive, more productive than you ever have been. And I was like, ah, that doesn't make any sense. Right. Because I'm going to have so much less time because, and I'm going to be exhausted. Like that doesn't make any sense. And they were like, well, you have less time. And it's like, it, it filters out all the other stuff that you realize what you shouldn't be spending your time on because you have such limited time. And you're like, you have to be really, really cutting the things that are, are not important. And only focusing on the big, most important things because you have limited time. And I quickly read, I quickly realized that.

Nicole: You're like, I got an hour right now and this is what I can do. So,

Rick: yeah. Exactly.

Rick: And I did have a buddy, um, one of my good buddies in Washington, DC who sent me a book, I think, I think it was Ashton Kutcher. Did he write a book?

Nicole: I think so, yeah.

Rick: For dads? And I started to relate the first page and like, I appreciated the humor of it, but I also read it because it was like horror story from the, from the get-go. And that's why I was like, I made the decision. I'm like, I'm not going to read these books because I don't want to have that preconceived, you know, thing in my mind, like this is going to be so terrible. Like I want to have my own experience. And so from that, like from then on, I didn't read any, any of the books. I will say that we did, we use the Ovia app and there's a pregnancy Ovia app.

Rick: And we, my wife and I were in that every single day. And that was great because it was talking about the types of things, the types of changes that were happening and stuff like that. I will say this actually, before we go on, I think this is really important. It was really cool. Is that, you know, I, one thing I did learn was that if you play music, um, and hold the music up to, um, to my wife's belly, then you know, the baby can, can start to associate that music. And I was like, what? Like, come on, really. So I was like, what the heck, I'm going to start doing this. And so I'm a huge fan of the TV show, Friday Night Lights. I've seen it. Like, I don't know, I've seen the entire tire series, like five times. And they, th they're the music in that is, is really, really cool. It's instrumental music and stuff like that. So I picked a song called Your Hand In Mine, and I would play that on my phone and I would hold it right up to, um, my, my wife's stomach. And I would just lay my head on, on her. And whenever I played it, she would kick into it. You'd move around. And, um, we'll come back to that. But just like I tried that, and it was so cool, the reaction of, of, um, of the baby in there, what was happening and, uh, yeah, that was just kind of like, you know, you hear things like, all right, try this, like, all right, cool. I'm going to try that.

Nicole: That is really cool. That is really cool. So was there anything that you felt like you wanted for the experience of the birth? I mean like most dads are like, I want to cut the cord or, or some dads aren't. Was there anything that you felt like you wanted?

Rick: I wanted it to be a short, like, like a three hour labor and for my wife to be like, like, oh, this is easy. And, uh, to happen at like 11:00 AM. I wanted all of that. Uh, none of that happened, um, no, like in all seriousness. It's like, I, I really was unsure about cutting the cord. I, yeah, like I, cause I went kind of back and forth on it at first. I was like, hell no, I'm going to cut that cord. And then I was like, yeah, this is my, this is, you know, this is my daughter being born. I want to cut the cord. And then I was like, no. And so I didn't make that decision until actually right before I don't mean like hours, but like shortly before she was born, I did make that decision. Like, yeah, I am going to cut. I'm going to cut the cord. Outside of that, I just, I had no idea what to expect. And so I was like, I'm going to go with it, you know, just, just kind of go along.

Nicole: Right. Right. And so did you, did you feel like you were ready to be like her support person based on what you learned in the hypnobirthing class? Like, were you paying attention or were you just like,

Rick: I was paying attention. Uh, they were evening classes and I don't do well in the evening, but yes, I was paying attention. Um, yeah. You know, I think that I had done, um, I felt like, and I, I told you right right before we got recording here that I asked my wife about this last night. I said, I'm going to, I want to be on Nicole's podcast tomorrow talking about this whole thing. Like, do you remember anything specifically that I did or didn't do? And she said, you know, you were super supportive and caring during the whole pregnancy. And so I, I feel like I was, and I, I tried to be, um, you know, I did certainly got frustrated at times because like, I'll remember back, like I remember used to be, I remember cooking like hamburger in the kitchen and during pregnancy, my wife's smell sense of smell went through the roof.

Rick: I was like, like, seriously, you could smell that. And she's like, it's disgusting stop. You know, like you can't cook. I'm like what? Like what do you mean I can't cook this. And I was like, wait, I can't have, I can't cook ground beef in here for nine months. You know? So yeah. It was just like, all right, I'm going to lose this battle. And, uh, it was just more, you know, was like stuff like that. But I, yeah, I feel like I was, I feel like I was as supportive as possible during that. And, you know, I can be a little bit sensitive sometimes. And my wife warned me early on. She's like, you need to know that, like when we're in the hospital, nothing is personal. Like nothing is personal. And I was like, okay. You know, and I, I just seeing her go through the process, I'm glad that she that she said that to me because you know, stuff was happening, that I had no idea was going to be happening.

Nicole: Right, right. So let's talk about what happened. What was the labor experience like?

Rick: Yeah, so, uh, she was two weeks late. Um, uh, or so we went into, uh, well, Maya wasn't born until the 15th of December, so she was two weeks after her due date. And so they induced on the 13th and I'll never forget. So we had to go in at, uh, I, again, I thought, you know, again, working off of like nice, comfortable hours and thinking, oh, we'll go in for induction at like 9:00 AM or something. No, we had to report to the hospital like 10:30 pm, on a Thursday night. I was like, what. Like, okay.

Rick: And so then, so we went in there and, um, started the process and nothing really happened until starting to like the next day. So she was in labor for, I want to say like 36 hours. Cause she wasn't born until Saturday afternoon. Um, at like almost like five till three in the afternoon, Pacific time. And so nothing really happened for the most part. Um, you know, through the night on Thursday into Friday, you know, she started to have more contractions and stuff like that. We hit Friday night and holy cow things, things change really quickly. And again, remember she's wanting like her, like the decision was that she didn't want to do any kind of epidural. She was open to it, but she really wanted to make an effort not to, to use that was just her choice. And we had been working with, um, a doula there's two, there's a, um, a doula pair here in San Diego that were just amazing. And, uh, so that was super helpful. Again, another, uh, you know, you asked me earlier about resource, I was always asking them questions and stuff like that. And

Nicole: So were they there with you in the hospital or one of them there with you?

Rick: Well, so that's a great question because you know, you go into like trying to figure out when to go into, when to go into the hospital or when, like once you're in the hospital, when do they, when are they needed sort of thing once we hit that Friday night and you know, there's no epidural at this point and I've never seen, do you want me to sugar coat things?

Nicole: Let's put it on out there.

Rick: Like I've never seen her in more pain. Like I've, and it was just so heartbreaking to see Amy in that much pain.

Nicole: And it's one of the things that I have that I have to explain to family members. It's really hard to see someone in that much pain. It really is. Um, like for us, it's normal. And we know that that's like a normal part of labor, but it can be really hard to see someone in pain like that.

Rick: It was. And I, you know, I've known, you know, at, at that point I'd known Amy for eight and a half years and I just, you know, obviously had never seen her in that kind of pain before and just her, just her struggling and just trying, just, you know, doing all the stuff that we had learned in the hypnobirthing and what the doula had taught us and so forth. And so I wanted, and so this is, this is probably, I don't know, 12 midnight or something, 11 PM, midnight, somewhere in that. It's all blurred to me at this point. But you know, somewhere in that ballpark on that Friday night and I, at this point, I've been watching Amy go through what she's doing, trying to help and support. And however way I can at this point, like, I want the doula there, right? Because like, this is, this is her expertise.

Rick: She knows exactly what to do. I don't know what to do. Like I don't know necessarily how to support her in, Amy's not in a place necessarily to be communicating with me to be sharing that. And so I'm texting the doula kind of just giving her an update of what's going on. And it was more like, okay, just kind of keep me updated. And I got to be honest with you. I got really frustrated. And I was like, I want you here. Like, this is what we hired you for. Like, don't keep pushing me off. And, but now I understand that like what, like, because she knew she's been, you know, been through it, whatever number of times, like she understood what was going on. But at the same time, I did get to a point where I was like, I would very much like you to commit now.

Rick: And at this point it was like, I don't know, two in the morning or something like that. And we're going through again, no sleeping. Um, and there was a, a little bed in the hospital room that was like the most comfortable thing ever. And so I did try to sleep because the nurses had said, you know, this would be a good time for you to try and get some sleep. You know, I didn't sleep at all. Um, finally the, uh, Amy had gotten to a point where she's like, you know what? And, and the doula was here by the way, at this point, uh, it was four in the morning. And, you know, that's when Amy said, like, let's, let's do the epidural. You know, I don't want to continue to feel like this. So I'd heard how big the epidural the epidural was. And I was like, there is zero chance I'm watching this like to get put in it. Actually, they, they said that they, the nurses told me that they said they have to order. I don't, I don't know what the person's called. Like the epidural person.

Nicole: Yeah. The anesthesiologist.

Rick: Yeah yeah. To come over. They were like, all right, like they actually brought a chair in. They said, you need to sit down. And they said, we want you to turn away. And I was like, don't, you don't have to ask me twice. And, um, you know, and, and again, this is another thing awake. I just didn't understand. Like, I didn't understand like what, like what, what they were like, what exactly they were doing and, you know, what, what was, what was going on at that point. And so I remember that what I was concerned with was that, and, and you know, this you're like, well, of course, but she's still having contractions at this point, but yet they're trying to get the epidural going, like how does that work without, without hurting her, know what I mean.

Nicole: That's when you need a great anesthesiologist who can do it.

Rick: Exactly. And she did really, really well. She being the anesthesiologist and Amy and Amy did well too, because she was trying as much as possible to control it. And holy cow, after the epidural kicked in, and I want to say, I don't remember it, like, I would say within an hour or so, life changed. Like Amy, like laid back to rest. And, um, it was so much, and she's like, oh my God, I feel so much better. And, um, you know, she actually got some sleep and I remember, um, myself, I was like, all right, I'm gonna lay down. I didn't really sleep. But I laid down in the, uh, in the room there on the bed, uncomfortable bed. And, um, it wasn't until late morning that it wasn't like she slept all the way through, but like morning things started to pick up a little bit, um, is that where you want me to go with this?

Nicole: Yeah, go for it. Let's do it.

Rick: And so things started to pick up and slowly, more nurses started to show up in the room. And, um, so I was like, holy cow, we're getting, you know, we're getting close, it's go time. But then again, you never know, you know, like, it seems like it's moving forward and then you know, that like, so, but then when they call like the main doctor in like in the doctor's checking and stuff like that, and, and so forth and, you know, letting giving updates on, on, um, dilation and all that stuff. And that was the other thing too, is like, I didn't fully understand the varying degrees of the dilation. I'm like, wait, like, like cervix.

Nicole: Like, what is 6 centimeters, 8, what are we talking about?

Rick: Exactly. Like, at what point should I start to be like, get ready and all, you know? So that was another thing that, again, that the doctors and nurses were great with the questions and answering those questions and stuff like that. So things started to pick up around noonish or so, and by, so she was born at, at five till three, but like, you know, two o'clock ish. Um, but you know, again, the nurses are in there, there's a whole bunch of nurses and they're getting ready and they're like, all right, it's go time. And it, and it took a little while, but again, the epidural had been going for a while at that point. And Amy, she was in pain, but nothing like she was in before. And I could just see her getting so excited and really enjoying the process that it settled me down because, you know, and I was right there with her. And then, um,

Nicole: So were you, so were you, like, how long did she push for it? Like, were you helping while she was pushing?

Rick: I mean, I was helping from the perspective of like, I was next to her right there holding her hands.

Nicole: Gotcha.

Rick: But I mean, the room had pro probably like nine nurses in there. Like it was, it was a ton of people in that room.

Nicole: Were you at a teaching hospital?

Rick: Was I at a teaching hospital? I don't think so.

Nicole: Okay. Okay. Usually it's only like a couple of people in there. Okay.

Rick: I actually think that we requested not to allow. I think that was, I, I remember that we did request like no, you know,

Nicole: No like student learners or anything like that?

Rick: Yeah.

Rick: Gotcha, gotcha. Okay.

Rick: And say like, we just didn't make a decision we had made.

Nicole: Yeah. Yeah.

Rick: And, um, yeah, the room had, I swear to God, it had probably seven or eight people in there, like the main doctor, and then there's a whole bunch of nurses and stuff like that. And I don't know if it was a case of like, we hit it that time, where there were no other births going on at that very time that there was extra hands on. And it had been going for, you know, 36 hours at that point. So they were all excited. It was finally happy. I don't know. But I remember there being a whole bunch of people there and, you know, they were getting things set up and, um, they got the tray there and the, I don't want to call it like the metal bucket or

Nicole: Yeah. Got all this stuff. Yup.

Rick: And I'm fascinated, like what is going on here?

Nicole: Right. Right. Right.

Rick: And so she pushed for, I want to say it really wasn't that long. It was like 20 minutes.

Nicole: Oh, dang.

Rick: Yeah. It was very like, I could be, that's what it seems like to me. I mean really 20 minutes, but I, but she she'll tell you. She said like, it wasn't that like on the, I want to say like the second or third, really big series of pushes and, uh, she's a fitness trainer. And so she's in, she's in really good shape. So like the breathing part came very easy to her and just her ability to push. I remember the nurses saying like, well, you're like, you really know, like you really have this down, you got great lung capacity. And like, you're making great progress when you do this. And I'll never forget. I mean, obviously like when finally they were like, all right, push, push, push. We can see that. See the baby. Now one thing they did ask me, they said, do you want to touch the head as it's coming out? I was like, no, no, thank you. I don't want to do that. I also don't want to see,

Nicole: I was going to say, were you watching?

Rick: I was, I was, no, I was up near her head. That is now, now that I,

Rick: I think about that, you asked me like, was there anything I wanted? I was like, I'm not going to watch her come out. I don't want to ruin anything for the future. I don't want the, I just, that was one thing I'm like, I'll be right there with

Nicole: Like I'm not doing that.

Rick: Yeah, I'll be at your head. And, you know, Amy did reach down and feel her head coming out, but, and they were like, do you want it? I'm like, no, I'm good up here. I'll be the support system above the sheet. And um, but then when, when Maya came out, I mean, then it's just like a complete loss of, uh, I mean, like just complete emotional for me, like I'd had tears, running down my face. And it was the most amazing thing. And th the, for me, it was like, here's, this is what she looks like after almost 10 months of, of all this. And just, there was such, it was so cool. And I did cut the cord. Uh, I will say though, that, and this I'm sure that lots of people go through this, but once when she came out, she wasn't like crying at this point and she was purple and I freaked out.

Rick: I was like, is she okay? And then I think that, you know, they cleared some stuff out of her and then she just like kicked in and she was fine. But that, yeah, that was just that momentary, like, like, you know, oh my, is she okay? Um, so another one of those things, again, that you don't, I don't really know anything about, but they're like, yeah, she's purple, but that's normal. Cause the blood is starting to circulate even more so. And, you know, then I started thinking about afterwards, like what a, an experience for her coming out. She's all, all comfortable in there for the past 10 months or so. And then it's like, and then yeah. Then she's out here with a whole bunch of people looking at her and like what is going on and yeah. And then just then they, uh, they, they put that ointment in her inner eyes and then

Nicole: Did they leave her with your wife? Like on her chest on her chest for a while?

Rick: They did that. That was something that was very important to us, that we wanted that skin to skin as quickly as we could, you know, they didn't, we didn't want them, uh, unless there was some sort of medical necessity that she needed to be taken out for any kind of reason to, for whatever we wanted that skin to skin right off the bat. And yes, she went right to Amy's chest and was there, um, it was for a good, you know, 20 minutes or so. And I'll just never forget him, just like my head was down there on, on Amy's shoulder, just like looking and like wanting, just to touch my, uh, and just again, just like looking at like, holy cow, there's this little being here. Um, and I, wasn't just an emotional mess in a good way. Um, and then in one of my favorite pictures that I have was that happened next was like, so I got to hold her. I sat down on the chair, took my shirt off and she was just laying on my chest and she's just like this little tiny thing on my chest. And I'm just looking down at her and it was just, it was amazing. I mean, it was just, it was so cool.

Nicole: Yeah. That's really special. Do you feel like the hospital staff pretty quickly gave you guys some space and time to like bond as a family? Or were there people in and out of the room?

Rick: Um, no, they were pretty good. They were good about that. Um, I felt like I wanted to hold her a little bit more at that time because you know, she'd already been on Amy's chest for about 20 minutes or so. And then I took her, I mean, it was only for like, I don't know, 10 minutes or so, but then they wanted to weigh her and measure her and all that stuff. And then she went right back to Amy. And so I kind of wanted more of that, but at the same time, I also understood the importance of like, hey, they gotta, they need to weigh her and they need to measure her and all this other stuff. And so, um, yeah, I got it, but I know of course I think I wanted more time to do that. Um, but I also understood the importance of what was going on.

Nicole: Yeah, yeah, yeah. So then now you have this brand new baby. What were the first, like a few weeks like of being a new dad?

Rick: Yeah. So first of all we moved from, I don't know what you call it. I guess like the birthing wing of the hospital over to like

Nicole: The postpartum area.

Rick: Postpartum area and the rooms, there are really, really nice at the hospital. We were at a Kaiser, but of course we have no idea what we're doing as parents. Like just zero idea. And again, from like, I haven't slept, you know, and of course Amy hasn't slept a whole lot. I'll never forget that first, that first night, um, where Maya was just balling, we have no idea why. Right. We're trying to learn how to swaddle, like swaddle thing. Um, I still, I could probably do it now, but holy cow, that was one of the hardest things to learn how to do, but I'll never forget. Like we don't, we, we didn't know what to do. And so we were like, should we call the nurse? But it was just like, we didn't call the nurse because it was like, no, this is kind of like normal things that we need to learn.

Rick: It wasn't like a medical, you know, it wasn't like, uh, something was wrong, but we, it was more of like, we didn't know what to do. And so I want to go back to that, the fact that I was holding the, they used to hold the phone up to Amy's stomach with that song from Friday lights. So we're in that first night in the hospital and Maya's just going like crying, like crazy. We have no idea why she's crying so much and we can't, we can't calm her and console her. So we're both sitting on Amy and I are both sitting in her hospital bed there. And, um, I have, um, I'm holding on to Maya and actually, no Amy was holding onto Maya. And so I was like, you know what, I'm going to try it. I'm going to try the phone. I'm going to try the song.

Rick: And I turned the song on and she immediately stopped crying.

Nicole: Oh, wow.

Rick: Because part of what I would talk to her about when she was inside of Amy was like, and I played the music. I said, when you hear this, this is going to be, you know, a calming cue for you or what, I forgot exactly what I said, but you're gonna, you're gonna relax. And this is gonna be sort of your cue that it's okay. And I'd saw that night, that first night I turned the turn that my phone on, you know, pull the song up and she immediately stopped crying and both Amy and I just like started crying. Cause we were like, holy cow, she, she actually remembers that she associates. And even to this day, I can play that song and she stops and she just kind of smiles and looks at me, you know, and she's 18 months now. And it's just the most amazing thing ever.

Nicole: That is so amazing.

Rick: So those first few weeks going back to what your, your question, holy cow,

Nicole: No one can prepare you, but like we can, we can both like talk about what it's like and nobody, you, you can not be prepared for what that's like.

Rick: This is one of those things where you think you're prepared. Uh, no. Um, like it was just, um, so here's the thing that I think I've only talked about one other time and I get emotional talking about it because I just had to think about this and how I was. I didn't, I resented her, I resented Maya. I did not, I didn't connect with her for the first four weeks. Um,

Nicole: Wow. That's really brave of you to say that.

Rick: And, and it's it. I hate saying it out loud, but it's the truth, right? Like I resented, I didn't resent her like per se, but I resented the fact that I was being, this is very selfish for me to say, but I'm gonna say it. I resented the fact that I, I didn't, I wasn't getting my sleep. I'm a very, I like structure and I like my routine, you know? And, and so I had none of that. And so because of that, I was very resentful because here was this, you know, this, this new baby into our lives. And because of this baby, I didn't have any of that. And for me to say that out loud, and for me to even think about that now, I feel terrible in saying it, but it's the truth. I did think that. And

Nicole: It's also very, very common for moms and dads to feel that way. I think we just don't talk about it enough.

Rick: Well, when you, when you mentioned earlier, you said that you have support, you know, I do have a very good friend of mine who you would know who he is and he has three kids now. And I talked to him about this and he's like, dude, that's the, exactly the same way that I felt. And I felt this like, oh, like really like this isn't crazy. Like this is, this can be a normal thing. And so I'll never forget what, like, when, like when that, when that changed, it was a very distinct moment was so we, I will say made the mistake of bouncing Maya on a stability ball because it was the only thing that would calm her down from very early on. And I say mistake because then she got used to it and it was harder to break from sleeping and getting her to bed, all this other stuff.

Rick: But you're just trying to figure out, we'll do anything, but I'll never forget. One day I was, um, bouncing her in, I was holding her and I was bouncing around the ball and she just looked up at me, look up at me with her big eyes. And she started to smile and I I'll never forget that feeling. It just, it just, every, all that resentment and stuff I'd been feeling just melted away. And it was that, and it was, it was like four weeks. And I just felt that immediate connection there. And, but yeah, like I'm, I mean, I'm embarrassed to say but at the same time. It's just the reality of what I was going through. And what I felt was it was so hard and I just resented, um, the fact that, you know, selfishly I didn't have my routine and schedule and all this other stuff, but yeah, it was not gonna lie. It wasn't easy.

Nicole: It it's not, but again, I think we don't do enough to normalize that. And I don't even know if we consider a lot about dads and the postpartum period. I had a, uh, a psychologist on and she talked about how actually dads can go through kind of like a postpartum depression or anxiety as well. It's a trying time to have a new baby. I mean, it's lovely. It's beautiful. It's wonderful. But it's also challenging, especially for your first baby.

Rick: And I think I did go through that. Um, I actually am a very big proponent of therapy and I sought out at the time. Um, actually when Amy was pregnant, I sought out a therapist who specialized in, in men who were either just a new dad or about to become a dad. And he's still a therapist. He's still my therapist to this day, but like, that's his specialty. And so that was part you. And you asked me before, do I have a resource like that? He was a big resource for me to kind of like from a therapy perspective to kind of prepare me and just look at, you know, from, from mind and all in psychology and all that stuff that was helpful. But after she was born and as I got back to see, and over time, you know, he did say, you know, I do think you're experiencing some of the, of postpartum.

Rick: And I was like, what's like, I thought that was only for, for women, but it's, I've, I've learned. And I did talk about it. I think, I don't know if it was my podcast or what have you, I talked about at one time. Oh no, what it was, it was a Instagram post. I did a long post about it and I had so many people reach out to me and say, not enough guys talk about this, not enough fathers, talk about this, like, please talk about this more, because this is real stuff. And I was just like, oh, okay. It's just my experience. And I, and I talked about it,

Nicole: Right? Yeah. Yeah. You'd be surprised. I'm sure you helped a ton of people that way, because especially guys don't talk about these things as much. And then was your wife breastfeeding also? Cause that also adds another level of stress potentially. How did that go?

Rick: She was in, and we're, we were very lucky and fortunate that Maya latched re like right off the bat, I want to say like second try in the hospital and she latched. And so we went through a little bit of challenge there within the first couple of days, but for the most part, it was, it's been a great, I'm speaking. Like it's been a great experience, like, you know, and, um, and she is still breastfeeding. We're almost 18 months. So today is the fourth. She, 18 months is on the 15th. We're coming down to where, you know, Amy is just not producing, um, milk anymore. So we're, I think Amy said the other day, she's probably at about another month or maybe six to eight weeks away. Um, so we're getting down to that point. Maya's been done really, really well with it.

Nicole: That's great. That's great. Cause breastfeeding can sometimes be a challenge. I always personally call breastfeeding a labor of love. Like you do it because you want to do what's best for your children, but like your whole world starts to revolve around. When is the next time you can pump? When do you have to go here? When do you have to go there? And so to do it for 18 months is quite impressive.

Rick: And that was part of the, you know, the first few weeks again, adjusting, like, what do you mean she has to feed every two hours or whatever it was. And like that two hours starts when she begins. Like, I didn't understand, like, what are you talking about? Like, holy cow, she's eating all the time. And, and we did go through, um, you know, some periods of, you know, I, I did a little bit of bottle feeding in the middle of the night to give Amy a break and she did okay with that, that wasn't a bottled feeding, meaning like breast milk. She did okay with it for a while, but that was not something that we normally did just because she didn't, she didn't love it. We also tried a, a night doula, um, to come in. I think we tried it once and we didn't really sleep a whole lot, but just because it was just a weird experience for us.

Rick: And because we had, we'd actually budgeted to have a month of a night doula and we, we ended up never, never doing it just because, well, I just, other than that one time, just because I don't know, it just something that we just, we weren't really comfortable with that a person that we didn't necessarily know who they were, we're going to be in the house with our newborn baby. And so for us, it was just like, we're a little bit more anxious and we're not, we're not getting a restful sleep. Cause one of my wife's best friends had it at night too. And they were like, oh my God, it's the best thing ever. It's just, you know, an example of different experiences for different people.

Nicole: Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. And then did you do all this stuff? Like diaper changes, baths, all that kind of stuff.

Rick: I am a diaper changing machine. I had never, I had changed like one diaper when, when Maya was born. I think I changed one of my nephew's diapers, like when he was, uh, when he was a baby, but I, I didn't, I had no idea what I was doing and, and the funny thing, not funny, but like an interesting thing was Amy was like, yeah, don't forget your wiping down. I was like, what are you talking about? And she had to explain this to me. I was like, Oh yeah. I'm like, I would never have thought on that. And, um, a buddy of mine, they, they, they just adopted a young baby girl and I texted him. I was like, dude, one of the best things I can tell you, and I'm not going to give you advice, unless you ask me, don't forget to wipe it down.

Rick: And it was just one of those things where I was like, oh, I would not normally think about this. And, um, but you just kind of get into it. And you're like, she's got to get cleaned up here. And, um, and honestly like for the first little while, it's really not, you know, like the poop and stuff. Isn't really, that was another thing too. I'm like, what do you mean? It's not like normal looking poop, you know, like again, just, you just got to jump in and do it. Um, and then we did baths. Um, you know, that was one thing that we were kind of going back and forth on where we're like, well, did we give her baths every day? Like, is it like, but then the doctor was like, once a week is fine. And so I think in the early part we just did. I think we did like once a week and then we started to progressively get, maybe it was like twice a week. And, um, we now give her a bath every day. Cause just cause it's part of our nighttime bedtime routine and I'm the bath, I'm the bath guy. I'm the bath person. I give her a bath. Every I love it. Yeah.

Nicole: Yeah. It's fun. Fun times. Fun times. Yeah. So just to wrap up, what would be like your favorite piece of advice that you would want to give to expectant dads?

Rick: I think just be just roll with, as things are happening and try not to have an expectation in your mind of that. It's going to be a certain way because it's almost guaranteed not to be that way. Um, and just to be open to the process and, and really, you know, enjoy the process and try and be as present as possible. You know, the, the whole, I hate the cliche, but it's so true. Um, you know, someone told me early, like, you know, the whole, the nights are long, but the years are short or whatever it is. But somebody told me that like in the first month and I was like, screw you, like, you have no idea what I'm going through right now. Yeah. But it really is true because we look back and I just said to Amy this morning, I was, and you know, I just like, that's our daughter right there. And she's like running around and just, and here we are 18 months later, like it's been like the blink of an eye. It really truly does go by, by super quickly that does not help when you're in the middle of it. I realized that, and you've had no sleep. I'm like, I get it. Um, but just try to be present to, to what's going on, enjoy the process and try not to have too many expectations on the way and just enjoy the ride because it really truly is amazing.

Nicole: It is indeed. So where can people connect with you if they are interested in learning more about the things you offer for online business folks?

Rick: Um, my podcast is a great place to start. It's called the Art Of Online Business and I'm on wherever you listen to podcasts, iTunes, Spotify, wherever. Um, so the podcast, um, I'm on instagram @rickmulready and then my website is rickmulready.com and we're currently undergoing a update to the site. So hopefully by the time that people visit, it's going to look a lot nicer than it really than it does right now. But yeah, I appreciate the opportunity to talk about this. Cause I told you this, when we, when we were talking about coming on giant through this, this is not something I normally talk about, but I love talking about it. And it's just because it's such a unique experience. And so thank you for the opportunity.

Nicole: Well thank you for coming on. I really, really appreciate it, Rick. Thanks so much.

Rick: Absolutely.

Nicole: It's a fun episode. I so enjoyed that conversation and I really appreciate his just honesty and not sugarcoating and keeping it real with us during the conversation. And I'm sure that you enjoyed it too. Now, after every episode, when I have a guest, you know, I do something called Nicole's Notes where I do my top three or four takeaways from the episode. So here are Nicole's Notes from my conversation with Rick. Number one, take a minute and check on your partner. As Rick mentioned, partners can have anxiety and worries and fears about pregnancy and birth. And maybe even things like postpartum depression, they may need to seek out professional help even like with the therapist. So do take a moment and check in on your partner, make sure that they are taking care of their mental health during the pregnancy birth and in the postpartum period as well.

Nicole: Number two, I really liked how Rick talked about he wanted to be sure that the experience was his experience. And I definitely recommend that you do the exact same thing, make the experience your experience. Now, of course you need to get educated. You need to learn about labor and birth and the things to expect on all of that good, great stuff, but ultimately it really needs to be your experience. So although you hear other people's experiences and you hear other stories and you certainly learn from that, go into it with an open mind. Birth is an unpredictable process. Every pregnancy, every birth is different. So make the experience, your experience. And then the final thing that I want to say is that Rick talked in the beginning about thinking about in business, how you have to work like crazy and hustle, hustle, hustle in order to get ahead.

Nicole: And he gave the example of his father and kind of learning those values that you have to work, work, work, work, work, but that actually isn't true that you don't have to do those things. And I want to extend that analogy to getting ready for your pregnancy and motherhood. So during your pregnancy, you don't need to read like 50,000 books. You don't need to listen to every single podcast, read every single blog, post follow every single Instagram account, find three or four resources that are valuable to you and provide you, get information and stick with those. It doesn't have to be like an overwhelming work yourself, crazy learning, every single thing from every single person. And similarly, once you are a mother, there's going to be pressure. Whether you put it on yourself or whether you feel pressure from society, there may be pressure to do all the things, to dress them up in the perfect outfits, to do photo shoots, to make perfect organic meals.

Nicole: As they get older, volunteer at things, bake, arts and crafts activities, all of those things that doesn't have to be your story. If that's certainly what you want to do and that fuels you and you enjoy it, those things are enjoyable for you then. Great. But don't feel like you have to do all of the hustle and bustle and things in order to be considered a good mother. It is your love is what is going to make you the best mother. And you can express that love in a myriad of different ways. So don't feel like you have to do like all the things and be like this perfect or picture perfect. Joan Cleaver. If y'all even know who don't Cleaver is from Leave it to Beaver kind of mother. You don't have to do that. Do what works for you. All right. So that is it.

Nicole: For this episode of the podcast, please do subscribe to the podcast in Spotify, Google Play, Apple Podcasts, wherever you're listening to me right now. And of course I would love it if you leave an honest review, particularly in Apple podcasts, because that really helps the show to grow. It helps other women find the show. You know, I am on a mission to reach and help as many women as possible. And I so appreciate your help in that mission and in that work of making sure that people have access to this information. So leave me that review in Apple podcast. And I do shout out that's where I do the shout outs from as well. Also, don't forget to check out the other resources that I have for you beyond the podcast, go to drnicolerankins.com/resources to check out those free guides that you can download pain management guide, meditation, warning signs to look out for after birth, prenatal tests. Those are just a few again. That's drnicolerankins.com/resources. Now next week on the podcast, I am revisiting preeclampsia. That's a really important topic. So you definitely want to come on back next week. And until then, I wish you a beautiful pregnancy and birth. Thanks so much for listening to this episode of the All About Pregnancy & Birth podcast. Head to my website, drnicolerankins.com to get even more great information, including free downloadable resources on how to manage pain and labor and warning signs to look out for after birth. You'll also find information on my free online class, on How To Make A Birth Plan That Works as well as everything you need to know about my signature online childbirth education class, the Birth Preparation Course. Again, that's drnicolerankins.com and I will see you next week.