Crystal started the journey to midwifery on an ambling trail through the natural world. As a child, she witnessed many lambs and calves being born on her father’s farm, and this instilled amazement and wonder at the incredible entry into the world we all make. As a young woman, this wonder and amazement was further fostered through adventures and apprenticeships with herbalists, healers, yoga and spiritual teachers and energy workers. Eventually this journey led to the world of birth, in support of the amazing transformation women, families and communities make when a baby is born. Crystal has been supporting women and families in pregnancy and birth for over a decade, having completed a 400hr holistic doula training program in 2003, and graduating the Midwifery Education Program, cum laude, at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario in 2011. After practicing for a year at the beautiful Birth Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Crystal and her family relocated to Kelowna in 2013. Her favourite part of being a midwife is supporting and witnessing women, individuals and families make informed and empowered decisions about their own health and pregnancy journey. And, of course that first newborn cry! That’s pretty amazing.
When not midwifing, Crystal spends her time with her supportive husband and their two life-loving sons – camping, hiking, gardening and enjoying wild-crafting herb walks. She also loves a good cup of strong black tea with milk and honey.
One of my earliest memories is walking hand-in-hand with my mother, after a half-day at preschool when I was three years old. There was a pregnant woman walking and speaking with my mom, and they were both were encouraging me to look at her pregnant belly and touch it if I wanted. I started crying because it was overwhelming for me to imagine a woman growing a baby inside of her body, and my mother apologized to the woman for my weird behaviour. Today, I am still overwhelmed by the miracle of pregnancy and birth on a daily basis; some things never change.
After high school, my parents encouraged me to study something that I loved; so, I earned a Bachelors of Kinesiology from McMaster University, inspired by my interest in the human body as a dancer of many years. Amidst academia, I took my itchy feet on as many international expeditions as I could manifest. One such expedition took me to Costa Rica. There, I met a midwife, and was overcome as I witnessed the profoundness that empowered childbearing can have for women and families. I completed the Midwifery Program at the University of British Columbia, a four-year Bachelors degree. I learned from many wise women in BC, at a waterbirth centre in Alberta, and at two public hospitals in Uganda, East Africa. Since then, I co-founded Malachite Midwives here in Kelowna, and have worked for Doctors Without Borders internationally.
When not catching babies, I am dabbling in beginner piano playing, exploring Okanagan Lake in my inflatable kayak, and attempting to mature my Okanagan wine-tasting skills.
After growing up in Alberta, I heard the West Coast of BC calling. There, I raised my wonderful daughter and enjoyed a successful career for over 32 years as a Respiratory Therapist and Polysomnography Tech.
Not long ago, I felt the need for a shift in my life and began a journey of self discovery. After a lot of travel and reflection, I landed in beautiful Kelowna and found myself drawn to the Malachite Midwives team.
Using new skills, engaging with, and being accepted by this wonderful group of caring women makes me feel very fortunate. Motherhood has been an exceptional journey to experience and as time moves forward, the bond is strengthened.
Travel has always been a passion of mine, in which I have gained much awareness, acceptance and outstanding life experiences. May my future continue to transform as I embrace the wonder of all those around me!