Mother daughter duo, Midwife Paula Schnebelt LM & Doula/Student Midwife Michelle Vess-Ochoa are a team empowering and guiding women in Napa, Sonoma, Solano and Marin throughout all stages of life; prenatal, birth, postpartum & beyond.
Senior Midwife, Paula Schnebelt, LM.; student midwife and doula, Michelle Vess, and her group of apprentice midwives make up the passionate cohort of birth professionals that are 'The Midwives'!
Paula and her team of midwives are passionate about aiding women and families in birthing naturally in their home, on their terms.
Paula's experience is often called upon by midwives in the area as she is looked at as a mentor by many. Recognizing her love for midwifery and teaching, Paula frequently brings on apprentice midwife students to be a part of her birth team. Paula attends every prenatal and postpartum visit, attends every birth and is a fountain of birth resources.
Paula has been midwife in Napa, Sonoma, Solano and Marin to over 1,200 births including VBAC, etc.
She feels that it is her calling to be an advocate for women and the normalcy of birth. She truly loves embarking on every birth journey!
In addition to monitoring your medical needs Paula and her team will support you during the challenges, celebrate the joys and help you navigate the emotional and physical changes. We are privileged to live in a time where we have the option to have a home birth or a hospital birth--whatever the mom and her body decides. Fortunately, Paula Schnebelt, LM is experienced in both.
Meet Paula Schnebelt, LM
Paula is passionate about protecting the birth process. Her desire is that everyone will feel great about their birth experience. She remains current in evidence-based practices and works hard to protect and support each couple's desires and personal plans for the birth of their baby. She recognizes that no two mothers or babies are the same, and guards each experience as the unique event it is.
Paula is a mother of five daughters, three of which were born at home. Paula has been attending births for over twenty years and is a California Licensed Midwife and a Certified Professional Midwife. She remains current in BLS CPR and Neonatal Resuscitation. Paula loves guiding women on their path toward motherhood and would be honored to share in your birth journey.
She is a member of the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) as well as the California Association of Licensed Midwives (CALM) and actively attends workshops and conferences to further her knowledge in all areas related to women’s health
Meet Michelle Ochoa
As the oldest daughter of Paula Schnebelt, Michelle has spent most her life listening and watching her mother support mamas and their families in experiencing the joys of homebirth.
Through tears, and struggling to hold a 2-year-old while taking pictures, Michelle’s first home birth attendance was that of her youngest sister. Since then she has attended many home births, is a practicing doula, and is currently in the process of becoming a licensed midwife.
Michelle takes great joy in her work and feels so fortunate to have the opportunity to work and learn with her mother on a daily basis. She greatly enjoys following mamas from prenatal appointments through to their postpartum journey. She finds the work inspiring.
Michelle & Paula integrate much care and love into their practice taking great pride in their ability to give clients as much time and individualized attention as they need.
"25 years ago I was very much involved in my first son's birth at a hospital. I felt that I had to be very strong with the doctor as to my wishes to assist in the delivery. Paula and her team were just the opposite. She and her team made us feel that it was all about us and our child coming into this world, not them. I had no idea how wonderful the journey could be. Every day I am so thankful for Paula helping us bring Phoenix into our family. I would highly recommend her as a midwife to anyone considering her team and the services they provide."
"Paula and her team are an amazing group of loving, knowledgeable, skilled women who supported me in having the most peaceful, empowering, and magical home birth. Paula inspired confidence in my body and the birth process and I felt secure with her level-headedness and skill that everything would be okay. Prior to my homebirth, I had a hospital birth with a doctor and medication. My home birth and experience with Paula and The Midwives group were 100% better in every single way. I would encourage anyone interested having a natural, safe, and beautiful birth to work with Paula! Almost 3 years later I still think of my birth experience almost daily and feel eternally grateful to Paula and team."
"I can not express enough how thankful I was to have such amazing support and knowledge from Paula and team at both my son's and daughter's home births. She was calm and collected when both of my stubborn children didn't want to come out. She was quick and stern when she needed to be lol. I praise God for her passion and dedication to love and nurture me and my whole family during the transition for a new life to enter our family. She is full of so much knowledge and willing to share all her amazing tips and tricks! We love her so!"
Our primary care provider, Paula, had her first two births in a hospital and her more recent three births at home.
The word "doula" means "servant", aka mothering the mother.
Ancient Midwives were often paid in food, clothing, animals, or a jug of molasses in return for their services.