Bornclear Testimonials

Nothing I have accomplished has given me more confidence than birthing my children at home naturally. I was so high after delivering my children-not just because I had a new baby, but because I was so proud of what my body (and mind) were able to do. I strongly encourage women not to give this power away. "Better Birth, The Ultimate Guide to Childbirth from Home Births to Hospitals" is a great way to prepare women for the most beautiful and raw experience and to remind us all that on a very primal level, birthing is as natural to us as women as breathing.

Cindy Crawford


This workshop and book, Better Birth was 500 times more helpful then I possibly could have hoped for. Denise's ability to cut through all of our illusions and to reveal our base fears, how they were generated, and most importantly, how to overcome them was life changing.

Winter Cantagallo


The BornClear method not only changed our approach to labor but our approach to life! All featured in her book “Better Birth, The Ultimate Guide to Childbirth from Home Births to Hospitals”. Denise's techniques as a one-on-one coach were exactly what we needed as we prepared to be first-time parents.  She strengthened us in ways we did not expect. She helped me understand and believe that a woman has tremendous power to shape her birthing experience.  

As a result I was able to mentally, emotionally and psychologically create my perfect birthing space and also included all the material details that I felt would be supportive.  Our midwife told us that in her eighteen years of practice, she had never had a patient who took as much responsibility for her labor as I had!  Because of what I learned from Denise I was able to, before and during labor, allow my mind to lead my body in ways that were productive and healing.  I attribute a huge part of my under 8-hour, unmedicated, and powerfully amazing labor to Denise.  

In addition, she lead my husband and I to be aware of the possibilities within ourselves and the limitations that have been blocking us, limitations that might inevitably negatively affect my labor if we continued to choose not to change.  Denise's ability to tap into specific impediments to a positive birthing experience lead to other miracles in our lives (reuniting with my father, employment for my husband), miracles that positively affected the birth of our son.  

With Denise's help we were able to give our child the gentle birth he deserved.  I now feel that she is not only our birthing coach but a mentor and a spirit sister (one who is not afraid to tell you the truth about yourself!).  I have been applying what I have learned from Denise to heal more aspects of my self, inspire my friends and create a better life.

Neibaur and Leila McCarrey, Program Officer, Lantern Group & Director, Committee for U.N. Delegations


Born Clear made us aware of how our emotions and fears effect our babies and our births. The tools Denise gave us to clear away anything that was worrying us or getting in our way of a clear birth were tantamount to the beautiful and intense experience that was the birth of our son. Her explanations of the mechanics of the birthing process and the emotional components that effect how we birth made it possible for us to clear away any issues and clutter that would have blocked the birthing process and allowed us to bask in the moment. Our baby is incredibly calm, and I can't help but associate the clarity and peace we had going into his birth with the guidance Denise gave us. They are actually lessons to be used before, during and into the life of our child. She makes you do the work, and it pays off in folds! I can't recommend it enough.

Liz Willette


Usually I don't plan too much in my life. I just wait and see where life is going to take me and if I don't like it, I know I won't do it again. So taking the class with Denise and really looking at how I wanted the birth of my 2nd son to be was pretty challanging. I never had gotten past that I wanted a waterbirth at home. We were in the midst of renovating our new home and moving, so I was already 8 months pregnant when we started taking our classes and it was really convenient for us to have the classes over the phone.

It also was great to have Denise check in with me every now and then to make sure I was relaxing despite all the chaos around me, so childbirth preparation didn't become something else to do but actually a time to look forward to - to relax and create. My son's birth was the most amazing experience and I definitely would do all of it again. And everything turned out the way we had wanted it to be: quiet, easy, fast, just perfect.

Martina Caviezel-Schenk



The birth preparation and experience represented a profound journey for me and an opportunity for growth, transformation and intimacy. I will always have a vivid (or should I say blissfully foggy?) memory of a peaceful, conscious birth. It was a birth that my dreams and visualizations were made of, that I think all women hope for. I feel grateful for every stage of my labor/birth, the times when I was focused and at ease as well as the times when I was afraid and uncomfortable, because those times reminded me of the power of my mind.

When I realized that my thoughts had shifted from my original intention to trust my body fully, I was able to pull myself back, surrender my body and mind, and return to watching the miracle unfold on it's own. BornClear was an amazing anchor, teaching me to trust myself and my body and how to stay focused and relaxed. I attribute my experience of ease and empowerment to the training I received through reading, instruction and practice.

Laurie Gerber



Denise's class was inspiring and really empowering. She puts together such a rich array of material, then presents it so clearly and down-to-earth, everything she said made perfect sense to us. You leave the session feeling like for once, labor, delivery and post partum aren't mysteries to confuse you, but natural, organic aspects of life which you can relate to in a very direct and helpful manner. We left the one day class feeling on top of the world, ready for labor and like we'd just spent the day with our best friend, coach and mentor.

Dana Fabbro



My first birthing, the birth of my daughter, was completely traumatic, both emotionally and physically. When I was 5 months pregnant with my son, my second child, I was panicked and terrified. I did some research and found Denise's class, BornClear.
Denise helped me rethink all aspects of my life and encouraged me to make all the necessary changes I needed to, to fulfill my dream of an easy, clam, and peaceful birth. I listened to daily affirmations and relaxation tapes. Yoga aided me physically and spiritually, by preparing me for the deeper more profound level of consciousness I needed to be successful in my birthing. The birth plan helped me clarify in my mind who and what I needed present in those crucial hours to help me feel safe and honored.

When the contractions started, I had the tools to make this a truly awesome birth. My experience was one of spiritual nature. I was able to let go of tension and fear, and replace it with deep trust. My baby was born so quickly, I had a hard time believing he was actually there. Later that night, my baby in my arms, I listened to another woman laboring. Her screams and moans lasted hours, and I thought, she does not know that it does not have to be this way. I want other women to know - you can crate the birth that you want.

Jill Ordonez



BornClear and Denise Spatafora, helped me to create the birth experience that I truly wanted and will cherish forever. Having "toughed" out my son's birth without drug interventions, I was skeptical about the value of Hypnobirthing, but equally sure that I wanted something different for my daughter's birth. The natural birthing classes I had attended had given me plenty of information about what to expect, but armed me with very few tools about how to deal with the actual birth. In the end, I did have a drug-free birth, but I was unable to share the event in a meaningful way with my partner because I was too consumed with the effort of managing my contractions. My husband simply had his hands full dealing with me. The techniques that I learned through BornClear helped me to remain calm and focused during the early stages of my labor. I stayed at home, took a bath and even fell asleep for a short time.

When labor intensified, we were both able to be fully present and engaged throughout the entire process. Yes, my labor was intense, but I felt in control and ultimately exhilarated. As soon as my daughter emerged, I was totally energized and ready to walk around the room. All of the energy I had conserved, I was able to use to take care of myself and my baby. It was a beautifully empowering experience. I recommend this course to anyone who has a heartfelt commitment to a drug-free labor but who also has concerns about their ability to cope with their fears and uncertainty around the birthing process. It is a wonderful gift to give to yourself, your partner and to your baby.

Deb Grant


Overall, I had a stress-free pregnancy with Siena. Sure, there were about 2 months early on of what I'd label great physical challenge (exhaustion, gagging, dry-reaching...), but from a mental/emotional standpoint I had never been happier or more relaxed.  And once that cleared it was smooth sailing. I had a delicious 2nd trimester - eating joyfully, heading back to dance classes, and generally enjoying life. At the beginning of the 3rd trimester I started to feel tired again and assumed I was heading into the heavy, exhausting trimester that everyone talks about. Fortunately, at my next obstetrician's appointment he said my iron levels were slightly low, put me on an iron supplement, and I was flying high again. From that point I never had any energy issues to the point that two nights before I hit 40 weeks I was out 10-pin bowling with my family (and with a bit of coaching, do my best bowling ever - not that that says much ☺).

There was one area of the pregnancy however that sent me on my own personal rollercoaster ride. At about 34-36 weeks, my doctor started noting casually that the baby's head (though in the correct position) was still sitting quite high. He wasn't concerned, but did say it was something we'd want to see progress over the coming weeks.

Each week, with a bit more concern in his voice, he'd give me the status update which for the most part was "no change". In the last few weeks, as is his responsibility, he started educating me about the possible outcomes if the head didn't start to drop down into the pelvis. In essence, there was increased likelihood of needing to be induced as well as the possibility of needing a c-section.
Now neither of these things is the end of the world, but they were totally absent from the vision my husband, Ben, and I had created for the birth of our first child (or any of our children for that matter).

Each week I would walk out of my appointment with a brave face and then nearly burst into tears as I walked down the hallway. For a few days it would play on mind creating great anxiety (as well as great personal growth) and then I'd speak with the "right" person or have the "right" thought and I'd come back to center and recreate in my mind how I planned to have the experience go.
By weeks 40 and 41 I was going through life with a dark cloud around me nearly all the time. I couldn't believe it had come to this after such an easy and joyful pregnancy!

Then, just a few days before I was scheduled to be induced, a miraculous thing happened. My stepfather, an anaesthesiologist who had specialized in obstetrics for many years, explained to me so effectively exactly how a c-section works and the actual advantages of it that for a night I actually walked around with the though, "if there's a good chance I'm going to labor for 14 hours and end up with a c-section anyway, maybe I'll just go elective!"

And just like that, my anxieties melted away. At the end of the day, all that mattered was that I was going to have a baby (!!!) - hopefully healthy - and, in the long run, how he or she got out really wouldn't matter *that much*.

And then another miraculous thing happened.  I was already 7 days "overdue" and I was scheduled to go into the hospital on the 9th night to be induced. My family and I went to my cousin Miriam's house for dinner. Miriam is an extraordinary energetic and psychic healer, and very often I've found that I have some sort of physical reaction simply to being in her home. That night was no exception.

Within about 3 minutes of walking through the front door, I started having fairly intense sensations in my pelvis. It literally felt like someone was forcing my pelvis open. I allowed myself to breathe through the sensations (in between bites of pizza as I stood next to the table - too uncomfortable to sit), and Miriam, my husband Ben and I agreed that after dinner we would go to her healing space to further encourage the baby to come.

I don't remember the exact details of our time downstairs, but here's the gist: Miriam started by giving me some lovely massage with the oils she felt were needed. I know one of them was called Magnify Your Purpose as she sensed the baby had gotten a little *too* comfortable in the womb and needed a bit of a reminder as to why he or she was here!

She then helped us to connect with and invite the baby to come out and join us. In the process of reminding the baby why it had chosen to come here, she had us all place our hands on my belly - yum! After a bit more talking, Miriam looked seriously at my belly and said, "Start digging for the light baby, start digging for the light!"

AND SHE DID!

Suddenly the baby started pushing and pushing her way down. The movement was nearly constant (and very determined). Miriam helped me feel the subtle Braxton-Hicks contractions that had started, and then gave us the instruction to go home and make love ("doctor's" orders... ☺).

We fell asleep at about 11:30pm. At 12:04am I awoke to a rush of warm liquid releasing - my waters had broken!

To cut a long story short we were admitted into hospital at about 8am at which point I was 4cm dilated. Our Doula, Emma, helped us get set up and find the position and place in which I was most comfortable having contractions. To relieve the tension around my lower back I was happiest standing in the shower. As I felt each contraction coming on I would throw my arms around Ben's neck, drop my head on his chest and sway, breathing out as hard as I could, over and over, until that contraction had passed (at which point I would crouch down or bend over and stretch a bit).

At 11:30am, my doctor came in, peaked his head around to see me and asked how I was doing. With a smile and a relaxed voice I said, "It's a bit more challenging than I'd expected, but we're getting through it!"

Apparently to him my demeanor and comment meant I was a long way off still. As he was leaving, he said, "Ok, I'll see you in a few hours!" and when he ran into my parents in the hallway they were told that I'd probably be delivering at about 6:30 or 7 that night.

I didn't say it aloud at the time but when I heard him say ‘a few hours' I though, "You've gotta be kidding me! I came in here at 4cm and I've already been doing this for at least a few hours - I must be practically there by now!"

Well, interestingly enough, I WAS! Just minutes later I heard the midwife yell, "Get the doctor!" because I was fully dilated!

I had had no idea of what position I'd want to be in to actually give birth, but when the time came, I felt I just needed to keep standing (although my legs were exhausted and trembling by now ☺). I placed both hands on the bed in front of me and simply kept breathing. The doctor came flying in and set up a soft mat underneath me and talked me through pushing the baby out. About halfway through, I asked if he could lift the baby up to me to hold as soon as he or she was born.

Well, Siena Grace Bradley literally dropped out of me (fortunately Dr. van der Griend very gracefully caught her!) at 12:16pm. He immediately handed her through my legs and back up to me to hold and connect with as Ben stepped over and rejoined us.

While I still believe that however Siena came out would have been perfect, I feel so blessed that I was able to deliver her naturally. It allowed me to be so present and such an active participant in the process, and I know it's a memory that I will always cherish!

Siena Grace


I was so peacefully present to the experience I had giving birth to my daughter Isabella that when I close my eyes, today 5 years later, I can bring myself back to the moment I looked down into her eyes and welcomed her into the world. I thank Denise and BornClear for this. Because of Denise, I will hold for my entire life, one of the most beautiful moments ever experienced as a mother. I came to Denise during my pregnancy with Isabella at 5 months. I knew of her techniques and methodology of combining relaxation methods with her sense of meditation, knowledge and teaching of trust. I needed her help. I was getting ready for my second baby and I wanted to have a beautiful experience. I had in my mind how I wanted it to go but what was getting in my way was Fear. I was afraid of not having the stamina to breathe through the pregnancy as I had learned by watching the birthing tapes and I read almost every labor and delivery and meditation book but I was still nervous. I also planned the birth to be in a hospital but I wanted that experience to be as soft and natural as I could make it.

My husband and I took the BornClear course and learned how to trust each other, how to calm our minds and how to plan the birth of our baby. Denise taught me more about my body and about giving birth than I had learned during my first pregnancy with my OB/GYN. Denise’s caring and understanding of what I was sharing with her, about my fear of pain, and my fear of not being able to breathe and my fear that I wasn’t going to be able to do it, She helped me work through all of it.

Isabella was 15 days early and I went into labor during dinner with close friends. We had invited them over and planned to do a photography session after we ate ~ I wanted to have black and white photos taken of me and my husband with our son and my belly before the baby was born. I got a little nervous that I wouldn’t be able to have the pictures taken but we did it. I was a lot of fun knowing that I’d be having the baby within the next day or so. At 5am the following morning, it was clear the contractions were coming on much stronger and I became a little nervous. I couldn’t focus on what I had learned and I called Denise, within minutes she phoned me back - she brought me back to that peaceful place and reconnected me with my baby and my body. I was so in touch with what was going on and I could talk to Isabella it was amazing. I could feel myself being able to help Isabella position herself to be born. We got to the hospital, checked in and I was ready to go. I was able to breathe life in and out and the experience was incredible. Isabella was born right into my arms.

Lisa Robbins


When I found out I was pregnant I sent my husband out for books.  I began to eat thru them by the handful.  I was ignorant about the aspects of pregnancy and childbirth, and devouring books was the only way I knew how to educate myself.  It became clear very quickly that finding unbiased information was nearly impossible.  The naturals mistrust the medicals and the medicals think the naturals are quacks. Early on, under the influence of my obstetrician, I assumed that I would take an epidural and any other drugs they would give me at the first possible moment during labor.  It was not until several months into pregnancy that I began to question that assumption.  I was reading

“The Birth Book” and, while much of it was incredibly biased against the medical profession, a lot of the author’s points rang true for me.   I started to believe that my body was not just able to handle childbirth, but was in fact made for it.  I realized that women were giving birth to babies for thousands of years before the invention of drugs.  I wasn’t ready to question the prudence of having my doctors perform sonograms and genetic testing, but I did begin to wonder if I would need the epidural and other painkillers after all.
(read more)

Elisa Rader


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