Pregnant with her fourth baby, Sarah knew what to expect when she woke to her water breaking. Her other labours had lasted for up to 22 hours, so she had plenty of time. Or so she thought.
The NSW mum ended up delivering her own baby, in her car, as her partner made a dash on foot for help. But her baby couldn’t draw his first breath, and it was up to Sarah to help her little boy.
Over their 14 years together, Sarah and Shane had welcomed three beautiful children, Blake 13, Tahlia 11, and Sophia, one. And they were excitedly awaiting the arrival of their fourth little bundle of joy. Smack bang on her due date, Sarah woke to sharp pains low in her stomach.
“I lay in bed for a few more minutes then felt another sharp pain,” Sarah said.
“I then stood up out of bed and felt my waters break. I made my way to the bathroom as my waters were running down my legs, calling out to Shane, ‘Get up, today’s the day’. Shane followed me to the bathroom and I told him to wake the older kids up and tell them bub is on its way.
“I had a shower and the contractions started – they seemed to be about three to four minutes apart. Shane came in to check on me and asked, ‘Should they be coming this quick so soon?’
“As I climbed into Shane’s Toyota Landcruiser I had another contraction. I said to Shane, ‘Get me to the hospital now! Hurry up!’ We got to the top of our street and I thought to myself, ‘We aren’t going to make it to the hospital’. I wanted Shane to get us to the hospital safely so I didn’t want to panic him. One minute from home we got a red light, I’m saying, ‘No, no, no!” I knew we didn’t have much time.
“Shane stopped the car at the hospital’s drop-off zone, and I instructed him to get help. I reached down as I pushed and felt my baby’s head and face, with the next contraction I pushed the rest of my baby out.
“I tried to pull my baby up but realised the cord was wrapped around his neck. I then felt terrified but knew I had to get it off. I put my fingers under the cord and attempted to left it over his head but it was too tight, I managed to use one hand to pull more cord out then I was able to lift it off his neck which he then screamed to my relief.
Shane and a nurse coming back to the car. They opened the car door to me sitting on the front seat cuddling new baby and the look on Shane’s face was priceless. The nurse calmly said ‘Congratulations’. I then realised, ‘Oh my goodness I just delivered my own baby’. Shane then announces, ‘It’s a boy’. I hadn’t even looked in all the excitement and shock.”
It wasn’t long before the shock set in for Sarah, who began shaking uncontrollably. She was ushered into hospital in a wheelchair, her body quivering.
“Once there was a birthing suite ready, I delivered the placenta and they checked us both over. Callum weighed in at 9 pounds 13. That afternoon Callum met his excited siblings, and his grandparents and uncle. We spent the night in hospital due to Callum needing his sugars checked every three hours due to his weight.
“The midwives and nurses were calling him The Car Park Baby. We went home on Christmas Eve just in time to spend a beautiful Christmas as a family of six.”