From Panic to Joy – Unassisted Birth in the Car!

Let me start by saying I have planned an all natural childbirth (no pain medications) from the beginning, and lied to anyone who asked if I was planning all natural. We hired a doula around 16 weeks pregnant and sat in several hours of childbirth classes. We felt prepared.

On Thursday, June 9th, we (David and I) went to the Albertville Farmers Market from 3-6 to sell pork and eggs. Afterwards we ate at Maters with my sister, Anna and her kids. The first contraction came while they were paying the bill. We had to go by Anna’s when we left and then to CVS to buy pads because my mucus plug had started coming out that morning. While David was in CVS the contractions got a little stronger, I started timing them. Five minutes apart lasting one minute each, which is when my doctor said to come to the hospital. They were manageable though. When David got back in the car I told him we needed to get home fast.

I text my doula, Courtney, she asked me to time contractions for five minutes and let her know how they were. After three minutes I text her describing them and how often they were coming, she replied that she was going to go ahead and make her way to our house. That’s the moment I realized this was the real deal and started to cry, I could tell my husband got very nervous, too, but was trying to be strong for me. Courtney lives within 15 minutes of the hospital, so I joked that we should just meet her at the hospital instead of her driving an hour north to see us just to turn around and go back.

Contractions continued to get a little stronger. She arrived at the house at 9:15. At 10:00pm she mentioned that I might want to go to the hospital because contractions were getting worse, and quickly. David wanted me to labor at home a little while longer but I felt like it was time to go. David knew once we got to the hospital if I didn’t progress as fast as they wanted then interventions would start. He wanted to avoid that.

We were in the car by 10:20 heading to the hospital an hour away from our house. Right when we got out of town I told David she was coming. He of course didn’t believe me. By this time contractions were bad, actually horrible. I kept yelling at David to get me to the hospital and asked a million times how much longer, he would reply “Not much longer, you’re doing great.” I had emailed him birth affirmations that week and asked him to read them with each contraction. I’m so glad I did; each one he said helped me so much. Courtney was following us to the hospital and had suggested I ride in the backseat so I could squat on the floor… thank goodness she did! I started praying that God would help me because I knew we weren’t going to make it to the hospital. David was driving almost 100 MPH, but when we finally passed by a shopping mall and I knew we were no where close to the hospital.

That’s when I let go and let my body take over. I yelled at David again that she was coming and he needed to pull over. He wouldn’t. I finally had the courage to reach down and feel if she was crowning or not. I felt the water sac, it felt like a water ballon hanging between my legs. With the next contraction it broke and my daughter came out in my hands. I guided her out and in to my pants. It was 11pm, it was so dark I couldn’t see anything, I was terrified to lift her up onto my chest not knowing what I was grabbing or if I would somehow hurt her if I didn’t pick her up correctly.

David immediately pulled over and called 911, Courtney followed. I opened the door and yelled for Courtney, she grabbed our daughter up out of my pants and realize the cord was wrapped around her neck twice and tight. Courtney took over and tried desperately to remove the cord. After what seemed like several minutes she was finally able to remove it. I held our blue, what looked like lifeless daughter, talking to her, putting her to my breast, rubbing her, trying anything to get her to breath. Courtney took her from me and tried some things she has seen a midwife do, which included breathing into our daughter’s mouth.

She immediately took in Courtney’s breath and started turning pink. I got our daughter back and she let out a loud beautiful cry.

Without the support of my husband and the natural childbirth class we had taken I never would have been prepared for our daughter’s birth.

birth in car, unassisted birth


  • Marsha

    How very brave! Amazing what we are capable of, when in a situation concerning our children. Amazing birth story to share with your daughter.

  • Fallon

    You are truly amazing!!! I too had a story very very similar 7 months ago. Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby and no medical interventions, wonderful. You go momma!!!!!

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