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  • Pinay Mom Gives Birth In The Family Pickup With Dad Catching Baby In His Arms

    She originally wanted a water birth, but her baby had other plans.
    by Kitty Elicay .
Pinay Mom Gives Birth In The Family Pickup With Dad Catching Baby In His Arms
PHOTO BY Courtesy of Andrea Intalan
  • Having a birth plan is helpful so that moms can have a say on how they will deliver ther baby with the support of their birthing team. Then again, we’ve learned that sometimes, no amount of planning can prepare you for childbirth — it can happen when you least expect it, like in a car while en route to the hospital.

    This is what happened to Andrea Intalan, 36, when she gave birth to her second son, Dakila, at the backseat of their pickup truck last July 30, 2021. It happened on their driveway at their home in Las Piñas.

    Planning a water birth

    Andrea with her husband, Jed, and their sons, Kidlat and Dakila.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Andrea Intalan

    Andrea shares that her second pregnancy came with mixed emotions, especially as it happened in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We were just not emotionally ready for another child,” the mom tells SmartParenting.com.ph via email.

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    She and her husband, Jed Intalan, had just moved from Manila to Ilocos Norte for her job as an events and activities manager in a resort in Pagudpud, so they thought her missed periods were due to stress. They also felt they were not done “loving” their eldest son, Kidlat, who was only 3 years old.

    “When I heard Dakila’s heartbeat, acceptance was then overcome with guilt, as I realized how selfish I was for neglecting my developing baby in his first trimester,” she shares.

    Andrea spent the rest of her pregnancy “making it up” to her baby by nourishing her mind and body through healthful choices, like eating nutritious food and doing yoga. Since she gave birth to her firstborn via unmedicated vaginal gentle birth, she planned to do the same for her second child. She also hoped to have a water birth this time around.

    “I was well guided by my doula and my OB when I was preparing for our first baby, and since I had the same birth team, I knew we were all on the same page,” Andrea shares. “I still prepared and printed out an elaborate birth plan that listed out our preferences from the environment, the different stages of labor, delivery up to post birth to be shared with my birth team.”

    Unexpected delivery

    Dad Jed caught the baby in his arms!
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Andrea Intalan
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    Despite the preparation, Andrea gave birth two weeks before her estimated due date.

    They had just driven back from Ilocos to Manila and set an appointment with their OB for a routine check-up. They also needed to secure permission from the hospital to allow them a water birth, plus schedule RT-PCR tests for her and Jed according to COVID-19 hospital protocols.

    After the routine checkup, Andrea and her husband went back to the hospital to submit their letter of request for a water birth. “I had a bit of bloody discharge earlier that morning and was having some mild discomfort which I shared with my doula and OB. My OB asked me to come by her clinic to check and I was 1cm dilated already. She advised me to get an RT-PCR test as precaution.”

    Still, Andrea thought it would be a while before she gave birth, as she experienced being in labor for 24 hours with her first child. She even walked around Bonifacio Global City with Jed — “I was feeling strong though I was experiencing some discomfort every now and then.”

    That night, she and her husband started timing her contractions — she was feeling a stronger and lengthier surge. She tried to sleep and breathe through the surges though it was increasing in intensity.

    After getting a couple hours’ sleep, the couple decided to go to the hospital. While Jed was preparing their bags, Andrea waded in a tub of warm water to ride out the surges. “It helped me calm down and breathe through my contractions,” she shares.

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    “I allowed each surge to flow and embraced the pain’s purpose as it coursed in and out of my body.”

    Jed helped Andrea dress up and she asked her brother to drive them to the hospital. But while walking downstairs, she felt an “instinctive urge to push.” When she got on the backseat of their truck, she realized she couldn’t sit down because of the intense pressure in her pelvic area. She ended up on her knees while facing the back of the pickup.

    Shortly after they left, Jed realized that he left some documents that they would need at home, so he sprinted back to the house. “As soon as he left, I told my brother that I couldn’t hold it in much longer,” Andrea recalls.

    When Jed got back, Andrea felt another uncontrollable urge to push and told him that she could feel their baby coming. When he checked, he could feel their baby’s head already. Their brother asked whether she wanted to go to the hospital or back home and Andrea chose the latter.

    “As soon as the truck came to a halt, I breathed out and slid Dakila out [of my body] and into my husband’s arms. I felt a sudden rush of peace and relief and disbelief as my husband handed our baby to me,” Andrea shares.

    They parked the truck in their driveway and ended up surprising Andrea’s parents with a crying baby. “With my baby still connected to me, we managed to swaddle him with some clean towels,” Andrea says, adding that since Kidlat was with them in the car, he woke up to the sight of his baby brother covered in afterbirth.

    Andrea holds her son Dakila in her arms after birth.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Andrea Intalan
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    Shortly after, they again left for the hospital to get Andrea and their baby checked. “I sensed another strong surge and as I breathed out, my placenta emerged,” Andrea shares.

    “I felt another wave of relief come over me and then managed to chuckle as I saw my husband’s face as he witnessed the birth of my placenta beside him,” Andrea recalls.

    “Upon arriving at the hospital and meeting my OB, still overwhelmed at what just happened, all I could really tell her was ‘SURPRISE!’ she adds.

    Lessons learned

    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Andrea Intalan

    Andrea shares that trusting her body and her baby paved the way for a successful natural and gentle birth. Based on her experience, her advice to expecting moms is to also mentally prepare for their baby’s arrival.

    “Don’t underestimate the power of mental preparation when it comes to childbirth.  A lot of time and effort is given to preparing for birth physically (what to eat, what not to eat, how much to move etc), but not a lot of time and effort is given to mental prep.  This is just as essential in the preparation process,” she says.

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    A husband’s role during the entire process is also crucial. “Knowing when and how to support you, when to be strong for you, when to be calm, when to be intimate, when to touch you becomes instinctive to them because you’ve been preparing TOGETHER as a team,” she shares.

    Lastly, no amount of preparation or planning can prepare you for birth, and not even you can dictate when, where, or how your baby will come out. “Learn to connect with your baby and your body and submit to the organic process of birth,” Andrea says.

    Read more incredible birth stories here.

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