Fast arrival for new addition;
Friday, 1st April, 2016
By Darrin Manuel
Netallie Station’s James McClure found himself thrust into the role of a midwife on Wednesday, but after just one day in the job, he’s decided he’d much rather stick to working on the land.
James’ wife Kimberley suddenly went into labour three days ahead of schedule this week with the couple’s second child, Oliver, who was determined to enter the world and meet his family as soon as possible.
Although the family was in Broken Hill, the birth was occurring so quickly that there was no time for the couple to make it to hospital, so they called an ambulance and James attended to the delivery personally at home.
He said the rapid birth had caught the couple off guard, as it was a direct contrast to their experience with their first child, Angus, who is soon to turn two years old.
“Angus was very slow, we were taken a bit by surprise I guess because Oliver came on a lot quicker,” he said. “It turned into a bit of a situation.”
The couple had been staying in a cottage in Broken Hill since Monday in anticipation of the birth, and despite Oliver’s sudden arrival, Kimberley said everything went smoothly.
“Ollie” Bede McClure was born at 10am weighing a healthy 7lb 10oz, and Kimberley credited the successful delivery to her “cool, calm and collected” husband, and also local midwife Shae McCunnie.
Ms McCunnie played a crucial role in the delivery, instructing the couple by phone throughout the delivery on positioning, technique, and urging them to stay calm.
She said they weren’t the only ones feeling the pressure, as this was the first time she had helped with a birth over the phone.
“I’d never had to do anything like this. I thought ‘I can’t believe this is happening and I’m doing this at 10 in the morning, but let’s roll with it,’” said Shae.
“I just talked them through it each step of the way and gave them clear information and tried to help them stay calm.”
Ms McCunnie praised the couple for their ability to work through the situation together - a situation that James said reinforced the importance of midwives.
“I wouldn’t say it’s an easy job. I now have a lot of newfound respect for the girls that do it,” he said.
“I certainly wouldn’t be able to make a career out of it.”