“Motherhood is teaching me patience and flexibility beyond imagination. I believe all decisions, choices, paths, interactions, relationships, traumas and opportunities I have encountered these 41 years have prepared and molded me into the midwife and woman I am today. In the community birth setting, I have the opportunity to honor each woman's journey in a gentle, comforting and intuitive way, offering information and evidence to help facilitate her decision making. I am grateful to all the people who have inspired and supported me along my path.”
Carissa knew from age 17 that she would become a nurse-midwife. After graduating from the University of Portland's School of Nursing with a spirit of hard work and service, she immediately dove into midwifery. Her first experience was volunteering as a maternity nurse at Holy Family Birth Center on the Texas/Mexico border. This confirmed her aspiration to become a midwife and launched her into understanding what an exemplary out-of-hospital midwifery practice (and community) looks and feels like. Carissa spent the next 15 years having and raising three children (all born at home with Catherine Schaefer and Nora Tallman in attendance!) and assisting in births in a variety of birth settings.
To continue her dream, Carissa achieved her master's degree in nurse-midwifery and her CNM certification. In practice, she enjoys teaching women about their reproductive health and promoting a healthy and calm postpartum episode for both partners. If growing your family is not your plan, Carissa also places IUDs and can discuss optimal use of natural family planning techniques.
When she's not working, you may find Carissa jogging in the forest--hanging upside down or doing yoga--sipping some fabulous Nossa Familia Coffee (the family business), or reading a parenting book on teenagers.
Master of Science, Nursing Midwifery, Frontier Nursing University, 2015
Bachelor of Science, Nursing, University of Portland, 2000
American College of Nurse-Midwives