Baby born at side of road at St Helena, Byron Bay
CHARLOTTE Ann Hart McCabe chose the roadside on St Helena Hill at Byron Bay as the place to make her dramatic entry into this world around 2.40am last Wednesday morning.
Her parents Dan and Natasha McCabe were racing to the birthing suite at Mullumbimby Hospital from their home at Lennox Head when it became obvious that Charlotte was not going to wait.
"The labour came on about 11.30 but the contractions weren't strong or regular so Natasha went back to sleep," said Mr McCabe.
"Our first labour was 14 hours long so we thought we had more time.
"Then around 2am. we had to jump in the car and head for Mullum."
Ms McCabe said by the time they reached the top of Ross Lane she knew the birth was imminent.
"My breathing had changed and I had already climbed over into the back seat," she said.
They pulled over into St Helena Road and after three more contractions Charlotte was born.
"Thank goodness we had a great midwife, she had talked us through an emergency car birth just a few days before," she said.
"It was so quick and I wasn't scared, I was just focussed on delivering her.
"You are just in that zone, you don't have to think, your body just does it."
"I grabbed her as she came out, ripped off my shirt and wrapped her up," said Mr McCabe.
"She didn't cry straight away so I cleared her airways and made sure she was breathing."
The McCabes had called the ambulance before setting off for the hospital and watched as it sped past up the hill searching for them.
"They turned around, put Tash in the back and took her to Mullumbimby hospital," he said.
"We would have preferred a home birth and would have stayed there if we had known Charlotte would arrive so quickly.
"I felt great about the whole experience but I had the easy job, it was Natasha who did all the hard work."
Mother baby are back home with Charlotte happy to just sleep and feed after her exciting arrival.