The magnificent Jacqueline Hammock and Morris (8 months). Jacqueline researched pregnancy and birth long before she ever decided it was her time. Once it was, she had a healthy pregnancy and knew she wanted to deliver with midwives in an alternative birthing center. Everything was set but at 34 weeks, Jacqueline and her husband were visiting family to prepare for their baby shower and her water broke unexpectedly. She tried to rest and when she got a hold of the midwife to see what they should do, she told her to go straight to the hospital locally rather than risk having her baby on the side of the Interstate, trying to get home.
While this meant delivering with an OB she'd never met in a hospital she'd never seen, Jacqueline says the hospital was wonderful and supportive. They gave her a quiet corner room and tried to respect her wishes as much as possible. She was able to have a vaginal birth and Morris was taken to the NICU in hospital where he remained for a week. Jacqueline says that one of the hardest things she's ever done was to walk into the hospital pregnant and leave without her baby.
She began pumping right away and the hospital was able to give Morris her breastmilk. They allowed him to be put on scheduled bottle feeds in order to get him home sooner and were able to transition from bottle to breast at home without any issues. Morris is very healthy today and his doctors don't expect any delays due to his prematurity.
Prior to becoming a mother, Jacqueline is a lawyer and the primary breadwinner in their household. They decided to move back to her husbands hometown so that she can, at least temporarily, be a stay-at-home mom. Her son was thriving in her constant presence while on maternity leave, and so they took a temporary step backwards, moving to a place with a lower cost of living so that she can stay with the baby at least as long she is his primary source of his sustenance.
Jacqueline says that as she's grown older, her feminism has become increasingly radical, and she thinks this movement is profoundly important to the cause. "Celebrating the bodies of mothers, where the trials and tribulations of parenting are writ large, and highlighting the beauty of the changes motherhood brings to one's experience of self; these are crucial steps in dismantling the patriarchy."