It Takes a Village: The stories behind Baby Led Enlightenment
We are all here because we believe in the Baby Led Enlightenment mission. Our journeys are all very different, but the Universe has brought us all together for one, very important reason: because it takes a village! Learn more about our stories here.
Certified Master Life Coach and Founder of Baby Led Enlightenment
For the past 11 years, Jelynda has been navigating the challenges of parenthood and all that comes with it. She has 2 amazing girls, each with their own special needs, and raised them amid her own challenges with health concerns, neurodiversities, relationship issues, economic struggles, traumatic events, and more. This has given her deep insight into the world of many special interest communities, such as autism, ADHD, dietary restrictions, natural health and healing, polyamory, LGBTQIA+, video game addiction, narcissistic abuse, physical disability, homeschooling/unschooling, peaceful parenting, freebirthing, pregnancy loss, and so many more!
12 years ago, I began a journey that transformed my life…
I got pregnant with my oldest daughter
My husband and I had been trying for 5 years after losing our first accidental pregnancy, and had just given up. I had thought I knew all I needed to know about having a baby and being a parent, since I had spent years researching and forming my opinions on what I thought was best. I quickly realized I knew NOTHING.
When I found the OB group I wanted to go to, they didn’t even want to see me until I was 12 weeks pregnant. Surely there were things I needed to be doing before then to have a healthy baby, I thought. I got all of the tests they offered, except for amniocentesis because I had heard there was a risk of miscarriage, and I knew I wanted to avoid anything and everything with the slightest risk of that. But that was the only risk I knew about beyond birth defects from vitamin A and “don’t clean the litterbox!”
I ended up so sick
…that I lost 12 pounds in a week and became severely dehydrated. After spending a few days in the hospital, I spent 2 weeks on an IV at home, then nearly the rest of my pregnancy with a nausea medicine pump attached to my stomach. My pregnancy was terribly miserable and I couldn’t wait for it to be over.
When I got to 36 weeks, I started trying all the “natural induction” methods I could find. I took all the supplements, both orally and vaginally, tried all the essential oils, nipple stimulation, and wore my husband out with sex that wasn’t enjoyable for either of us. Shockingly, I even allowed my doctor to do FIVE sweeps! I wanted her to come out, but didn’t want to do a “medical induction” because I had heard all the scary things. But I thought natural methods were fine. I thought there were no risks.
…ended in an emergency C-section. I felt like a failure. I struggled to breastfeed my newborn, and struggled to bond with her for months and became severely depressed. My anxiety got so bad, I could never relax. I blamed myself for all of it. If only I had researched more, if only I had tried harder to be a good mom, if only I was smarter, if only I had done this or that or the other thing…
In trying to find support, I reached out to moms’ forums. Eventually, I joined facebook (yes, I was a late joiner) and joined a lot of groups. I had to stumble across all the different factors I needed to take into consideration to become the mom I wanted to be, and have an enjoyable pregnancy and the birth I wanted with my second daughter.
3 years later…
I found the one person that directed me to what I needed to know and how to learn it. She connected me to exactly where I needed to be, in my local birth network and a few online ones. Where had she been all my life? Why couldn’t I have found her sooner? Why doesn’t everyone have someone like this in their life?
I knew I needed to pay it forward
…and help other women the way she and others helped me along the way. But I wanted to catch them before they went through the heartache I did. I spent years trying to help women on facebook, throwing out advice when I saw someone who needed it, and then having my heart broken when they disregarded my advice and went through struggles and tragedies that could have been avoided. I exhausted myself, and burnt out, pouring my heart into trying to help others who didn’t want to be helped.
That’s why I’m here today…
I went through so much and had so many complications that no one warned me about. I had no idea where to start. Because I had to go through all the things I DIDN’T want before I found someone who helped me achieve what I DID want, I want to help you find a starting place FIRST. I want to teach you HOW to start. You don’t know what you don’t know. I want to help you discover what you don’t know and how to learn it. That’s why I created Baby Led Enlightenment. Because it takes a village!
Founder of It Takes a Village, Our Partner Organization
Kayla is the mother of one wonderful daughter and a son on the way. The founder of It Takes a Village and a former board member of Pasco Hernando Helping Children in Need, she helps strengthen our local community ties and share the Baby Led Mission. Without her, we could not connect with and help as many families in our local community.
3 years ago, I started down a path that led me somewhere great…
I had a dream
I’ve always heard “it takes a village,” but I didn’t know anyone who had one. I wanted to bring the village back, so no one would have to feel as alone and unsupported in life as I did. I was a new mom and didn’t have a lot of family nearby. All I wanted was some support and a way to feel connected to other people. So, I created a Facebook group called It Takes a Village. I began setting up regular park play dates and other get-togethers for families in Pasco County, FL, where I lived, to connect with each other.
Life had other plans
Shortly after I began organizing local events, the entire world got shut down. Even after the lockdowns ended, not many people wanted to meet up in person anymore. I kept trying to host local events, but very few, if anyone, came to join me. I started to feel discouraged, but I knew I couldn’t give up. No matter how many times I sat alone at the park, I kept setting up the events, knowing someday people would feel safe to congregate again.
Something wonderful happened
When I moved to Citrus County 2 years later, I wanted to continue trying to bring the community together. I began hosting events there for families to gather and get to know each other. The turn out was much better, and people were enthusiastic about getitng out and meeting others. Jelynda came to one of them and told me about Baby Led Enlightenment. It must have been kismet, because our values and mission aligned perfectly. After a few months, we decided to partner up to double our ability to help our community while also supporting each other. I have loved the security in knowing we have each other’s back along this journey.
Administrative Assistant for Baby Led Enlightenment
A former ESL teacher in the Philippines, Kenn comes from a large family and is currently engaged to be married. She has been an incredible asset to Baby Led Enlightenment. Since 2021, she has been helping with various tasks in the operation of the organization. She helps the business to grow so that we can help more and more families in our local community and around the world.
1 year ago, I met Jelynda…
She had a dream
She wanted to help women around the world to become the best mothers they could be and enjoy their journey. I was hired to be her employee, but fate made us more than that.
We became friends
I admired her passion for her work, and she appreciated my help. We got to know each other and came to care about each others’ lives. Our conversations have always focused around caring for each other as fellow humans, not just as employer/employee.
I believe in the mission
My life is busy and I have many other responsibilities, but I will always make time to help Baby Led Enlightenment reach our goals. I hope to become a mother myself someday, and I appreciate learning all that I have in my time here. I know that together, we can create a better world for future generations.