"I almost died giving birth to my daughter."

A near-death experience made this Aussie actress reconsider the choices she was making in her life.

Rachel Griffiths has opened up about nearly dying whilst giving birth to her second child in 2009. Rachel suffered from a ruptured uterus while giving birth to her daughter Clementine.

She now says that this horrifying near death experience led her to re-evaluate her priorities.

Rachel and husband Andrew Taylor had been living in the US when she went through her difficult labour. Rachel had worked 70-hour weeks for years and even returned to filming US show Brothers and Sisters only six weeks after having her daughter. Then, she says, her traumatic experience caused her to realise that life was too precious to be spent away from her loved ones, leading her and her family to move back to Australia.

Rachel with her children Adelaide and Banjo.

“You just have to live the life you want to live after that, you’ve been given a second chance,” she says. “You’re aware of your mortality and the mortality of your parents and the people you love … (and want) to make sure you have time to enjoy as much of your children’s lives as you can.”

Rachel's husband Andrew was supportive of her decision, with his work as a painter allowing him the flexibility to look after their children while she was working.

“I couldn’t have done the hours I was doing if I was married to a banker, I wouldn’t have felt comfortable having the emotional part of child-raising outsourced, so I was always confident they had their Dad,” she says.

Whilst Rachel had to put her Hollywood career on hold, she didn't doubt that this was the right decision for her family.

“I didn’t doubt that it would be the right thing for everybody emotionally, but it was a bit of a risk work-wise, because I wasn’t sure what would be available,” she says.

A lighter work load has allowed Rachael to spend more time with Andrew and her children Banjo, Adelaide and Clementine whilst currently working on the Australian drama House Husbands.