Hunter was in a hurry: friend delivers Rochell's baby in hospital carpark

MOLONG’S Rochell Watts is a mother of two, but has yet to give birth in a hospital.

Ms Watts’ son, Hunter James Hayward, was born a week early in a car in the emergency car park outside Orange hospital on Wednesday after a short labour.

Hunter’s godmother Natalie Palazzi said the experience had become a joke between friends, because Ms Watts’ elder son, Phoenix, was born at the Royal Hotel at Cumnock five years ago in a similar experience - he was two weeks early.

“She nearly got to a hospital, she wanted to have this one at the hospital, she nearly made it,” Ms Palazzi said with a laugh.

Ms Watts had experienced back pain earlier on Wednesday morning, but she attributed it to a slipped vertebrae.

“The midwife said to me that he could come early because once your first comes early, kids after that can come early, but he wasn’t engaged last week at my last midwife’s appointment so that’s why we thought we had plenty of time,” she said.

During the course of the morning, she washed her horse and volunteered at Phoenix’s school canteen before the pain intensified and she realised she needed to go to hospital.

With dad-to-be David Hayward working in Forbes, she reached Garra before she called her friends, Ms Palazzi and Krystle Heinze, for help.

Ms Heinze drove her the rest of the way to Orange hospital, but the baby’s head began to crown at Gardiner Road.

“She said, ‘The baby’s head’s there’ and I said, ‘No it’s not sweetie, you’re doing fine,” Ms Palazzi said.

“Then I realised it really was there, so I put my hands down to grab his head and he pretty much came straight out, it would’ve been 15 seconds.

“Luckily for me, my godson was born in my hands. I was scared, I was excited. I think I think I’m a lot closer to my best friend than I’ve even been before, I think we’ve now got a bond that will never let us go.”

Ms Palazzi held Hunter as he was born before midwives arrived to cut the cord and take mother and baby inside.

They were released from hospital yesterday in perfect health, apart from some bruising due to the fast delivery.

Hunter weighted in at 3.6 kilograms.

Ms Watts believed she gave birth quickly because she was surrounded by friends during both experiences and she felt comfortable.

“He’s been really good, he slept the whole night,” she said of her newborn.

Hunter also joins half-siblings Alexander, 4, and Georgie, 1.

Ms Watts said she wouldn’t rule out a third baby, but would stay close to a hospital as she neared full term if she fell pregnant again.

danielle.cetinski@fairfaxmedia. com.au

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