Brisbane mum-to-be Tara Bishop was planning a cesarean birth. However, her twins, Evelyn and Harvey, had very different plans for their arrival.
When Tara was 32 weeks pregnant, her waters broke in the middle of the night and she started to experience intense pain almost straight away.
Just over an hour after her waters broke, Tara found herself on the side of a busy motorway in Brisbane, in the back of an ambulance cradling not one, but two babies.
Two babies, less than two-hour labour
Rewind to 2:15am on October 31st. This is when Tara’s waters broke. At first, she and her partner, Hayden Davies were planning on driving to the Mater Mother’s Hospital in Brisbane together.
However, Hayden realised his partner was in too much pain and called for an ambulance.
The paramedics collected Tara from the couple’s Sunnybank home and began the drive to the Mater Mother’s Hospital, with Hayden following them in his own car. However, once the paramedics inspected Tara, they realised they weren’t going to make it the hospital. The twins were ready then!
Evelyn was born first, on the side of the road of the Pacific Motorway at the Tarragindi exit. She was born breech, weighing 1.7kg.
Six minutes later, her twin brother, Harvey, arrived, also breech, weighing 1.74kg.
‘Everything happened so fast’
Hayden, who was driving behind the ambulance, watched as the ambulance pulled over to the side of the motorway but didn’t think his partner had already given birth.
“I was following the ambulance in my car and noticed they had pulled over, so I ran to find out what happened. I thought the ambulance stopped on the highway because Tara, who has a history of epilepsy, was having a seizure. But that wasn’t the case,” Hayden said.
“When I got there the paramedic said Evelyn had arrived and we needed to get to the Mater straight away.”
“It was a pretty dramatic arrival. Obviously both of them couldn’t wait to meet us,” Tara adds.
“Evelyn arrived at 3.31am and Harvey at 3.37am. Everything happened so fast.”
Harvey and Evelyn are now two weeks old and remain in NCCU at Mater Mothers’ Hospitals’ Neonatal Critical Care Unit. While Harvey had some breathing troubles at birth, he is now “happy and healthy” as is his sister.
The twins will remain in NCCU for a little longer before heading home with mum and dad.
World Prematurity Day
The new mum and dad share their story ahead of World Prematurity Day on 17 November, a globally celebrated awareness day to increase awareness of preterm births as well as the deaths and disabilities due to prematurity and the simple, proven, cost-effective measures that could prevent them.
Worldwide, one in ten babies is born too early – more than 27,000 each year in Australia alone. To show your support for World Prematurity Day, check out:
- Miracle Babies
- Life’s Little Treasures Foundation
- Preterm Infants Parents Association (PIPA)
Share your own story
If you have your own premature birth story you’d like to share, we’d love to feature it. All stories and videos are welcome.
What to read next
We also have some beautiful real mum stories featuring several little miracles and the emotional roller coaster involved in having a baby born prematurely.
Check out the following:
- 1 in 10 Babies are Born Prematurely. It’s Time to Celebrate These Teeny, Tiny Little Fighters
- I Watched My Baby Fight for His Life Inside NICU
- My Son Spent 6 Weeks in NICU and It Changed Me
- The Genius Invention That Could Benefit Millions of Premature Babies