Mum delivers her own baby in car just minutes from hospital
SHE was the little girl who just couldn't wait to be born, arriving in the family car just minutes from the maternity hospital.
Orlagh McCann was delivered safely by her mum, Stacey Heffernan, in the front passenger seat and weighed in at 6lbs 13oz as dad Johnny sped to the hospital.
"I was saying to him, 'The baby is coming. You'll have to stop the car', but I don't think he realised the baby was actually physically coming that second," Stacey (37) told the Herald.
The couple's journey began at home in Abbeyfeale, Co Limerick, last Saturday when Stacey felt she was going into labour.
The couple also have a little boy, Eoghan (2), who was left with his granny Noreen as they began the 40km journey to Tralee.
But as they neared Tralee, Stacey realised she was in trouble and might not make it to the hospital on time.
She said her handbag and mobile phone were not nearby so she couldn't even ring the hospital for advice.
"Then nature just takes over and your body tells you what to do and the baby just starting pushing herself," she said.
"I just leaned on Johnny physically, using my other hand to catch the baby as she came out. I don't know how he didn't crash the car. I'll never forget the look on his face.
"Johnny ran into the A&E shouting for help while I waited in the car with the baby. I don't know how long we were there but it felt like forever.
"My main thing was for someone to take her, make her warm and tell me she was OK. That was the longest part and it felt like a lifetime."
Stacey said it was only when little Orlagh was safely installed in the maternity unit that relief - and shock - set in.
"We're blessed. She's absolutely perfect and healthy. It's just a miracle," said Stacey.