Friends assist mom with at-home birth
March 14, 2011
- Friends assist new mom in at-home birth.
VILSECK, Germany -- Family member Julia Gallegos lounged on the couch in her home on Rose Barracks in the early morning hours of Jan. 6, and watched movies with her friend Ninfa Compean. The sun had long gone to bed but Amanda wasn't tired, she was too excited.
Maybe it was the fact her husband Sgt. Oscar Gallegos of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Squadron, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, was on a plane making his way home from Afghanistan for Rest and Recuperation leave, or perhaps it was the anticipation of her upcoming due date.
A baby would be in their lives in approximately two weeks, she thought.
Two weeks, however, was too long of a wait for little Phoebe, their daughter who was born just a few hours later and delivered under unique circumstances.
Gallegos sat next to her friend Amanda Sands as she relived the story more than a month later.
They looked at each other as most good friends do, giggling with their eyes and finishing each other's sentences. At first glance you wouldn't expect these two to be friends, and they acknowledge that.
"We couldn't be more different," said Sands. "In the way we dress to our personalities, but it just works."
Sands held baby Phoebe and gently rocked her back and forth.
"It was an amazing experience watching her being born and it brought us even closer together," she said.
"Yeah, it's a shared experience that not of lot of people can say they have had," added Gallegos.
On that Thursday morning in January, Sands had just arrived to work as an operations assistant for Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation at Rose Barracks' Langenbruck Center, when she received a phone call. A panicked Compean was on the other line.
"Get over here now," said Compean. "The baby is coming."
Five minutes later Sands arrived on the scene followed by the military police and emergency medical technicians. Conditions for driving to the hospital were not ideal as an ice storm had hit the night before. Plus, according to Sands, they would have never made it in time.
"Julia's contractions were coming every two minutes and she had already started to crown," said Sands.
In layman's terms, the baby was on the way.
"At that point, the crowded bathroom floor was how it had to be," said Gallegos, garnering laughs from her two friends.
"There were six of us crammed in there," said Compean. "It was a delivery with an audience."
Within 30 minutes from the time Compean made the phone call to Sands, Gallegos had given birth. In addition to the timing of birth being a surprise, so was the sex of the baby.
"I screamed, 'It's a girl!' as soon as she came out," said Sands. "I think I was more excited than Julia."
"It all happened so fast," said Gallegos. "It was such a crazy experience and hard to explain, but I'm glad they were there for it."
"It's a special bond that extends past our friendship into the next generation," said Sands, taking the tiny hand of the baby still cradled in her lap.
"And that's Pheobe."