Monday 18 December 2017

Mum who gave birth outside Garda Station thanks force who delivered her baby: ‘We’ll never forget the dramatics of Senan’s arrival’

Baby Senan with Garda Judy Davern and his mum Jennifer and Dad Jason in Carrick-on-Suir Garda Station
Baby Senan with Garda Judy Davern and his mum Jennifer and Dad Jason in Carrick-on-Suir Garda Station
Patricia Murphy

Patricia Murphy

A mum who dramatically welcomed her baby boy outside a Garda Station earlier this year returned to the station to thank the members of the force who helped deliver her baby safely.

Jennifer Power, from Ballyneale in Co Tipperary, said she panicked when she woke up at 2AM on April 3 to find her waters had broken and she felt an urge to push immediately.

“It was all very unexpected. Although it was my due date, I woke up in the middle of the night and my waters had broken. During my previous labours, the pain had been a bit of a build up but this was instantaneous, constant pain. My husband helped me out of bed and I immediately had this urge to push.

“My husband called my sister Carmel and she rushed over to mind our other two children Clodah (6) and Fionn (4), but later on she told me she didn’t think I’d make the journey to Waterford Hospital,” she said.

Baby Senan with Garda Judy Davern in Carrick-on-Suir Garda Station
Baby Senan with Garda Judy Davern in Carrick-on-Suir Garda Station

Jennifer and her husband Jason immediately got into the car but the mum feared she would not make the 35 minute drive to the hospital.

Jason called Jennifer’s midwife who advised the pair to ring an ambulance to meet them halfway, fearing she would not make the journey.

“As soon as we got into the car my husband called the midwife and she urged us to get into the hospital as quickly as possible, but I felt the need to push right there. The midwife obviously was listening to me in the background and told us to call an ambulance right away and meet them half way,” said Jennifer.

In the midst of her panic, Jennifer revealed that she suddenly thought of the Garda station in Carrick-on-Suir, and the couple pulled up outside what they hoped would not be an empty station.

“Jason was asking me where he should pull over in Carrick-on-Suir and I suddenly thought of the Garda Station. There was one light on but we really thought nobody was in. Luckily there was, Garda Sean Cuddy was there and he instructed the others on patrol to return as quickly as possible. In the meantime, we were on speakerphone to the Paramedics but I felt the baby’s head and I couldn’t help but push.

“The other guards returned and they helped me into the back seat of the car. I was so thrilled to see a female Guard, Judy Davern. Her voice immediately calmed me and allowed me to focus. By this point the ambulance arrived and everyone managed to move me onto a stretcher, where I had a bit of gas, and Senan arrived just minutes later, outside the station,” she said.

Jennifer admitted that she worries about what could have happened without the Guards’ assistance and said she and Jason were very lucky to have had their help.

“When he was out all the Guards came into the ambulance to meet him and Garda Cuddy joked that I’d have to call him Sean after him. They said he’ll definitely be a Garda when he’s older.

Baby Senan
Baby Senan

“When I think about the way that situation could have gone... it could have been dreadful if it wasn’t for the Guards. We were lucky that they were there because it could have been a different story,” she said.

Jennifer said the Senan’s safe arrival is all the more precious as they tragically lost their daughter Realtin last year.

“It was particularly scary because last year we lost our daughter Realtin, she was stillborn, and being in the middle of nowhere about to have a baby was terrifying.

“Senan is so precious to us after losing Realtin so it has been an emotional few months with him but he’s thriving. I’m breastfeeding him now and I’d say he’s nearing a stone," she joked.

“He’s our rainbow baby but we’ll never forget the dramatics of his birth."

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