Justine Rotteveel’s gave birth to her daughter Olivia in just over an hour – after just eight minutes of contractions she was ready to push.
“I went from zero to 10 centimetres dilated in eight minutes. It was just crazy.
“It was really petrifying because it was my first labour. In a lot of the prenatal classes they kept saying that first labours take a long time, you’ll feel the way, the contractions will build and you’ll have time to ease into it.
Justine is now pregnant with her second child. Image supplied.
"So when my waters broke and it all started happening - it went to zero to 10 in pain instantly, and I was petrified and I just kept thinking ‘this is just the beginning, I might have to maintain this level of pain for 10 hours'. I didn’t realise that the end was really near."
The Melbournian says she had a well thought out birth plan for her first labour.
"I wanted a really calm, quiet environment. I was open to epidural and drugs if I needed them. But basically I just wanted a really calm, quiet environment and I didn’t want any judgement if I wanted an epidural or anything like that, I just wanted to follow my body’s cues and see what I needed at the time."
The first time mum had been enjoying her pregnancy, it was late summer, and she wasn't bothered at all by being five days overdue. Then one night she started bleeding and the hospital advised her to come in.
"I just remember thinking on the way to the hospital, because I wasn’t in any pain or anything - ‘my poor husband, they’re going to keep me there for a couple of hours and he has to go to work tomorrow and he’s going to be really tired’," she said.
Justine was advised to stay overnight. She would never had made it to the hospital in time if she'd been at home.
"I was walking around the room and I said to my husband - 'I’m kind of feeling tightening in my stomach' - but I wouldn’t say it was painful and I have a really high pain threshold anyway - I don’t know whether that’s normal."
The midwife assured the then 28-year-old that she wasn't in labour. Hospital staff thought it was Braxton Hicks.
We asked women in the office what went through their head when they were giving birth. Post continues after video.