The actress elected for a home birth, and opened up about the experience in a personal essay in the September 2020 issue of British Vogue.
“Every stage of my pregnancy brought its own challenges and lessons,” the 33-year-old said. “Nobody really teaches you about what your body goes through to bring a child into the world until you’re actually doing it.”
The British actress-model got pregnant after completing filming Queen & Slim. During her first trimester, she was still promoting the movie in America while filming Without Remorse in Berlin. On top of that, Jodie experienced "constant nausea and fatigue, in addition to subchorionic bleeds" (also called a subchorionic hemorrhage, and refers to a collection of blood that can develop between the gestational membranes, such as the placenta and the uterus, during pregnancy).
The later stages of pregnancy were met with the spread of COVID-19 and lockdown measures, and the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and many other Black Americans spurring the Black Lives Matter movement and more calls for equality and social justice.
Jodie said this was part of why she and Joshua elected to have a home birth at their Los Angeles home.
"We had already decided on a home birth, because of concerns about negative birth outcomes for Black women in America — according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the risk of pregnancy-related deaths is more than three times greater for Black women than for white women, pointing, it seems to me, to systemic racism,” she said, according to Essence.
Additionally, the home birth meant Joshua could be present, unlike in the hospital where COVID-19 restrictions limited people.
Jodie recounted the support of her husband, who was there for every aspect of the pregnancy and birth, which saw the Without Remorse star in labour for nearly four days.
“Early in the morning on my third day of labour, my husband and I shared a quiet moment," she penned. "I was fatigued and beginning to lose my resolve."
Doting Josh ran her a bath then she "talked" to her body and daughter.
"In that moment, he snapped a picture of me," the mom of one said, referencing the beautiful shot that accompanied the article. "An honest moment of family and togetherness – a husband supporting a wife, our baby still inside me, the sacred process of creating a family.”
Jodie also admitted she wonders how she will explain to her daughter about her birth.
"The historic events, the social unrest, and me – a new mother just trying to do her best," Jodie said. "I think I will tell her that it was as if the world had paused for her to be born.
"And that, hopefully, it never quite returned to the way it was before.”
On Instagram, the new mom thanked British Vogue Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful for the chance to share her story.
"Many many many thanks to @edward_enninful for giving me the space to write about birthing at home during these fraught times in the incredible @BritishVogue september issue," she penned.
And the actress gave a sweet mention to Joshua.
"Also congrats to my loving husband @vancityjax for being a vogue photographer now."
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