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Billie's Story - En Caul Birth

I was 39+6 when I lost my mucus plug around 6am, at 11.30 I had a sweep, I wasn’t dilated and my cervix still needed to soften, my midwife said she didn’t think the sweep would be successful. I had some aches and pains but they really weren't that bad. The following day around 12.30am I rang triage asking whether I should go in as I had been having contractions for about 20 minutes lasting 30/40 seconds about 5 ish minutes apart. My waters had not gone at this point. The triage nurse didn’t want me to waste my time so told me to stick it out at home.

The pain didn’t improve and gradually got worse. I have never had a baby before so didn’t know what to expect, I couldn't sleep and was biting down on my sofa whilst my partner slept as I didn’t want to wake him unless I needed to go to hospital.

At 4.30 I really started having the urge to push, I was not thinking I was actually giving birth, just needing the toilet, I just thought it was my body wanting to pass a poo (naive). I couldn’t move so I decided I needed to ring 999 at 4.46, I woke up my partner, he called my mum and told her to come quickly. As my mum arrived, the babies head was crowning, she was going to arrive at any minute! The paramedics arrived at 5.06 and baby was here at 5.10! My waters didn't break and my baby arrived in her sack. I didn’t have ANY time for even gas and air.


An en caul birth is also called a “veiled birth.” This is rare, happening in less than 1 in 80,000 births and is considered lucky in many cultures.