As a nurse midwife, I have worked hard to be able to offer families all birth options: home birth, birth center, and hospital birth. I started out as a doula and childbirth educator before getting my RN degree. I believe all women benefit from prenatal care with a midwife due to the emphasis of the Midwifery Model on education, partnership, and natural childbirth.
I have three amazing sons, two of which were born at home with a midwife. As a health care provider, I encourage natural remedies for healing and have taken course to increase my knowledge. I do, however take pride in my ability to offer medication when necessary. All women deserve to make choices during their birth process and it is an honor to help offer natural childbirth options to families in our community.
It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the birthing families of Central Florida as a midwife for the past sixteen years. During that time I have owned and/or operated two birth centers and had a busy homebirth practice, as well. In addition, I served as president of the board of directors for the Seminole County Healthy Start Coalition for 2 years. Part of my mission and calling as a midwife is to serve in developing, low resource countries and educate providers that work in those areas. I have done disaster relief work in the Philippines at the Bumi Wadah birth camp after Typhoon Yolanda and in Guatemala conducting prenatal and health clinics. Locally, I am a preceptor and mentor for two Florida midwifery schools helping to train and educate student midwives.
I have had the pleasure of attending over 1,300 births and still find it to be an amazing and wondrous process! It is my belief that every women benefits from respectful, caring, midwifery modeled care. It’s thrilling to see a woman become more and more empowered and confident as she learns about her own body and her growing baby as she is an active participant in her care. As a midwife, I take a natural, holistic approach in the care I provide. A lot of time is spent on educating, talking, listening and building a relationship of mutual trust. I view pregnancy and birth as a normal, healthy event in a woman’s life. I believe that unnecessary interference in the birth process can disrupt the body’s normal function, leading to intervention-caused complications. Therefore, I embrace the role of midwife as guardian of the normal in childbirth. I believe that the birthing woman who has her physical and emotional needs met, and who is given skillful and caring support during pregnancy and birth, has the best chance for a normal and positive birth experience. I’m excited to be a part of the Tree of Life Birth & Gynecology team!
Rhonda has been serving families in the Central Florida area since 2004 as a doula, lactation counselor and childbirth educator. She came to work for Tree of Life in 2011 as receptionist then office manager she then felt called to pursue her midwifery education. She enrolled at Florida School of Traditional Midwifery in 2012. She graduated in April 2015 and received her license the following month. In her time off, Rhonda enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters as well as sewing and cooking.
Sabely Nichols, CNM, ARNP, WHP-BC: I always knew I would be a midwife. I come from a big family and was the oldest of the grandchildren, so I was always around birth and babies. It intrigued me to find out more about the body and all that it does throughout our lives. Because of this, I decided to become a Registered Nurse. I received my Associates of Science Nursing from Southern Adventist University in Collegedale, TN in 2007. I met my husband in university and decided that we would live in Florida, since his family lives here. I was very pleased to find a job as a Mother/Infant nurse at Florida Hospital Orlando, and moved to Florida right after graduation. I worked for the Florida Hospital system for 7 years in different capacities, different units and different hospitals. I attended Georgetown University in order to get a dual masters degree. I had the pleasure of having Kaleen Richards as my preceptor during one semester in my graduate program and completely fell in love with Tree of Life. I was exposed to a different side of women’s care that aligned with my values and beliefs. It was so amazing to hear the empowering stories about women who wanted to take charge of their health and be an active participant in their pregnancy, labor, birth, and beyond. I graduated in 2014 with a Master of Science in Nursing, with an emphasis on Midwifery and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner. I started working at Tree of Life in November of 2014 and the more I work here the more I realize that I am blessed to work with such an amazing group of Midwives and staff who are very passionate about the work we do.
Educator/Birth Assistant @ Deland
Educator/Doula @ Deland