Through her four vaginal birth experiences, Jessica Bower has had a bit of everything including her water breaking without labor, inductions, navigating gestational diabetes, shoulder dystocia, back labor, sterile water injection, and more. For her 4th birth, Jessica wanted an unmedicated vaginal birth at a birth center but ended up at the hospital with a version and 39-week induction. It still was a glorious experience on her own terms. Check it out!
What we talked about:
- First baby: wanting an unmedicated vaginal birth
- Water releasing with no labor…
- An induction to get it moving
- “That was awesome, but next time we get a doula.”
- Second baby: first, let’s process the first birth
- Slow to progress
- Sterile water injections
- And then the head was out!
- “Flip over, please.”
- Counting up in 30-second intervals
- A bumpy start after shoulder dystocia
- Third baby: rebuilding trust in the birth process
- “Mission Make a Smaller Baby”
- Taking charge of her sugar levels
- Fourth baby: Healthy respect for the birth process
- Discouraged about her sugar levels and needing insulin
- Scheduling an induction at 39 weeks
- Getting baby in place with a version and a Velcro band
- Cytotec, Pitocin, slow-release AROM
- “I need to eat my hamburger first.”
- Coming full circle to her desired waterbirth
Helpful resources, books, and podcasts*:
- Why this doula needs a doula, blog post written by Jessica
- Video of Jessica’s birth!
- Real Food for Gestational Diabetes: An Effective Alternative to the Conventional Nutrition Approach, by Lily Nichols
- Real Food for Pregnancy, by Lily Nichols
- Sterile water injections for pain relief during labor, from Evidence Based Birth
- Labour and birth—sterile water injections for relief of back pain in labour, from Mater Mothers’ Hospital
- Waterproof Mattress Protectors
- The Bradley Method
Related Birthful podcast episodes:
- Big Babies and Shoulder Dystocia, with Rachel Reed
- Gestational Diabetes, with Lily Nichols
- Newborn Sugar Levels and Breastfeeding, with Dr. Casey Rosen-Carole
About Jessica Bower
Jessica lives in Greensboro, NC with her husband, Ray, and four children, ages six and under. There’s never a dull moment in the Bower house as you can imagine, but there is a lot of love, excitement, and fun. When Jessica isn’t with her family, she’s spending time working as a birth doula. She has been a part of the Natural Baby Doulas team which is based in Greensboro for the past three years. She thrives on meeting with expectant moms during pregnancy, preparing them for birth, and then helping them adjust to life with a new baby. Her other favorite pastimes include spending time with good friends and eating healthy food!
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