Alvaston couple's shock as their baby is born in bathroom at home
A WOMAN who gave birth in her bathroom has spoken of her shock at having her baby at home.
Gemma Blackham's husband Caine had to be talked through the early stages of the delivery by a 999 operator before paramedics arrived.
Earlier in the day, the couple, of Waldorf Avenue, Alvaston, had actually been in Royal Derby Hospital but were given the all-clear to go home.
Mrs Blackham had had a routine appointment with her midwife, who advised her to go in because a heart monitor had a low reading.
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Mr Blackham said: "They put Gemma on the monitor but everything seemed okay.
"At that point, she was having three pains every 10 minutes but didn't think they were contractions.
"They said it was okay for us to go home as Gemma wasn't in full labour yet.
"When we got home, she was having them every five minutes but we were told not to go back to the hospital until they were a minute long every five minutes."
Mrs Blackham, 31, said: "I had a 20-hour labour with my second son and thought it would be a long night, so I had a rest.
"I got out of bed and it started to happen. I went into labour. The pains were horrific and I had no pain relief. Caine started getting ready to go into hospital but the contractions were telling me to push and I knew I wouldn't make it into hospital. I went into the bathroom so there wouldn't be a mess."
Mr Blackham, 36, rang for an ambulance and was told by the operator what to do for his wife.
He said: "It was daunting. I couldn't accept it was going to happen at home.
"The 999 lady was shouting at me, she was just doing her job, and I was shouting at Gemma, trying to get her to lie down.
"It was all a bit mad! Then I saw the baby's head, it kept coming out a bit and going back in again and I was worried he was in distress.
"Before I knew it, I could hear the sirens but they seemed to go on for ever.
"I was so worried about the stress to both of them.
"The paramedics came into deliver him and he was absolutely fine and so was Gemma."
The baby, Oliver Ellis, weighed 6lb 10oz, exactly the same birth weight as their other two sons, Dylan, nine, and Zack, five.
Mrs Blackham said, although the experience was scary, it was nice to give birth in her own home.
She said: "The paramedics gave me a gas cylinder and, after I had four puffs, he was born.
"Because I had a bad labour with my second son, I was worried about this birth but it was lovely.
"A few hours after he was born and the midwives had visited us, we were able to go to sleep in our own bed."