Healing from Birth Trauma: Unplanned Hospital Birth in the UK + NICU Stay

After a surprise, but wanted, pregnancy, Jessica dove into the birth world in preparation for a home birth with her first baby. Despite her best efforts, her pregnancy was marked with many difficulties including multiple bleeds, polyhydramnios, an irritable uterus and a preterm labor scare at 29 weeks. Jessica ended up having an unplanned hospital birth when her daughter arrived a month early on Christmas Day 2021. She managed to fight for the unmedicated birth she desperately desired, but felt very disempowered by how she was treated by certain hospital staff. Her daugher Poppy was born, but surprised everyone with unexpected health complications that resulted in a 6 week NICU stay full of uncertainty. Jessica also suffered from a major obstetric hemorrhage and vaginal wall tear during the birth.

Jessica and her husband Mark did everything they could to be there for Poppy as they waited to learn what her life might look like. After the prayers of hundreds of thousands of people around the world, Poppy went from an unresponsive, floppy baby with no suck, swallow or gag reflex, to latching at 5 weeks and being sent home as a healthy baby with no tubes at 6 weeks old! Jessica’s postpartum involved a very difficult breastfeeding journey where they overcame weeks of tube feeding, oral ties and low supply to nurse successfully for 13 months. She has also spent the last two years doing everything she can to heal her perception of what birth can be and to overcome the trauma of Poppy’s delivery and newborn days. 

Jessica Reynolds-Corden Bio

Jessica is a wife, mama, and lover of Meg Ryan movies and oat milk lattes. Originally from Hershey, PA, she now lives just outside of London with her British husband, Mark and daughter, Poppy. Jessica is passionate about real food and also chocolate, about full bellies and easy cooking, about endometriosis and how to flourish with an illness. As a stay-at-home, work-from-home mom she shares all of it over on instagram, along with life in the messy middle of motherhood. Connect with her on Instagram: @jessicaeatsrealfood or her website: www.jessicaeatsrealfood.com



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