Meet your midwives

Melanya Gonshorowski

Midwifery first called to me when I was 19 years old. I was studying birth in different cultures while attending UC Santa Cruz for my undergrad in anthropology. I realized women and families deserve to have the choice of where, how, and with whom they give birth. Becoming a Licensed Midwife and learning the ancient art of midwifery in order to help women in their own homes, was my ultimate goal. In order to fully be present for midwifery and having my own family, I also realized I was still very young and had some other forks on the path to follow first. Sometime you can ask me about living and working in a National Park, being a camp counselor, working on 10 day self-supported canoe trips for 8th graders, and my travels to South Africa, Mexico, and Guatemala.

In 2007 I became a Dona Certified labor doula before studying with celebrated midwife, author, and teacher Elizabeth Davis. After meeting Jessica through a mutual friend that same year I decided to go to Birthingway College of Midwifery to complete my training in homebirth. I began taking classes in 2008 and finished my course work in 2011. Within a few months, I completed my 2-year apprenticeship through Alma Midwifery Birth Center in Portland, specializing in both home and birth center births. In 2011 I returned to Nevada County to begin our practice together (as Jessica and I had whimsically discussed on long walks in the No Name neighborhood).

I graduated from Birthingway with a Bachelors of Science in Midwifery, passed my qualifying exam, and had a home water-birth, all in 2012. Experiencing first-hand what I’d witnessed over 250 women journey through has had a profound impact on my dedication to provide holistic homebirth services to women and their families. When Enzo was around 6 months old I began attending births again with the loving support of my husband, Alex, and our wonderful community of friends.

Having been born at home in Northern California to parents ahead of their time in many ways, I have a deep trust and appreciation for the natural birthing process. Also influencing how I practice midwifery are the several conferences I’ve attended (2003 and 2005) about how babies psychologically experience living in their mamas’ belly. I am a member of MANA (Midwives Alliance of North America), BEPE (Birth and Early Parenting Educators), and am regularly certified in adult, infant, and neonatal resuscitation. I am proud to be a Licensed Midwife and love my job witnessing the miracle of life and transformation several times a month.