A mum from Devon popped into her local Tesco to pick up some cat food and paracetamol, when in a monumental shock, she went into labour and gave birth to her child
Image: DEVON LIVE/BPM MEDIA)
A mum gave birth during a shopping trip at Tesco for paracetamol and cat food.
Lauren Ewings welcomed her baby boy Edward on January 22 – four weeks away from her due date. The 27-year-old began to feel in a state of discomfort, but pushed it to one sign, blaming it on Braxton Hucks (false labour pains). However, what she didn’t realise was that there was nothing ‘false’ about what she was feeling. Carrying on her day as normal, she dropped her eldest off at school before popping to the shop to pick up her essentials. As she entered the supermarket, her water broke. Lauren bolted to the disabled toilets to clean herself up and called her partner to walk over from their nearby home to help her.
However, things soon escalated past the point of return. Realising the baby was coming, Lauren called her mother and auntie, who subsequently contacted an ambulance and the Tesco staff to inform them that she needed help.
Rushing to her aid, a staff member found the pregnant woman in the toilets and put up a privacy screen. In a heroic moment, first-aid-trained staff member Lisa Haymes delivered the baby within 30 minutes.
DEVON LIVE/BPM MEDIA)
Lauren told DevonLive: “I got into the disabled toilets, and five or 10 minutes later, I felt a heavy pressure down below, so I called my mum. She called the ambulance cause I was in so much pain. My auntie, who was with her at the time, called Tesco Tiverton to try and get someone to come and help me.
“I’d been on the phone for about 10 minutes, and then five minutes later Lisa, who works at Tesco, came in and then two minutes later, I crouched down, and he started coming out. Two minutes later, I delivered the placenta, and then about 15 minutes later, the paramedics arrived. I went in at 9:10 am and he was born by 9:40 am. It was really quick, especially because my two previous children were c-sections, and this was my first natural birth, so I didn’t have any pain relief or anything.”
She continued: “‘I never expected to do that on a Monday morning. It’s been a bit hectic, and we’ve only just come out this morning because he was a little bit jaundiced, and they were a bit concerned he had a heart murmur. But other than that, it’s absolutely fine. He’s technically four weeks early, so he weighed six pounds two, so he’s proper dinky.
“It was a very unexpected day, considering it was my middle child’s fourth birthday, and it’s the day after my mum’s birthday as well.” Unsurprisingly, Lauren has heaped enormous praise on all the staff that helped her. She beamed: “The Tesco staff were all in shock and really excited. We’ve got a couple of friends that work there, and they were talking about it all day.”
In Lisa’s 30 years of working at Tesco, she’s never experienced a day quite like that. The 54-year-old said: “In all my years working in many Tesco stores, I’ve never seen anything like what happened on Monday. And while I am first-aid trained, you’re never taught how to deliver a baby.”
She added: “So when I saw Lauren in the toilet cubicle in so much pain, I knew I had to deliver it there and then relying on adrenaline and instinct. Luckily, it all went well. I looked after Lauren and the baby boy, keeping her calm until paramedics arrived. I feel an incredible sense of pride that I made a difference in someone’s life and was able to help deliver Eddie successfully.
“I am also so grateful for my colleague Caroline, who kept me company from outside the door, talking to paramedics and talking me through how to care for the newborn and mum. When I came back to work the next day I felt like a celebrity and all my Tesco colleagues have been so supportive not to mention the family who have been in touch to say a big thank you. I hope when Eddie grows he’ll keep a special place in his heart for our store in Tiverton.”