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After delivering 3 babies in hospital, Alicia had a homebirth. It was "terrifying".

Birth: there's nothing quite like it, and it's clear no two birth stories are the same. Which is why we're asking everyday women and some of our favourite celebrity mums to share theirs, in Mamamia's My Birth Story series.

This week we speak to Alicia Ramos, a super mum-of-four under six; Alexander, Aiden, Arthur and Athena. Together with husband Alan, they make up the Ramos ‘A-Team’.

If you thought a quick labour was a good labour you might want to talk to Alicia. She discovered that fast is not always best when it comes to birth, especially if you want to have your babies in hospital.

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Birth one, with baby Alexander.

“In January 2015 and with my first son, I was induced earlier than planned as my obstetrician was concerned about the baby’s heart beat,” Alicia says.

“I didn’t have a birth plan, but while I favoured a natural delivery, I was quite happy to ask for drugs. Once the pain really intensified after a few hours, I had to scream at the medical team to give me an epidural and by this point I was 3cm dilated.”

Ten minutes after the epidural kicked in, Alicia felt as if she needed to poo. 

“The midwife checked me again as she thought that seemed unusual and discovered I was now 10cm dilated – I started pushing and very quickly after an episiotomy, Alexander was born!”

Birth two, with baby Aiden.

Second baby Aiden was almost born in the hospital lift, as like his big brother he was in a hurry to get earth-side.

“I had been checked that morning and given a steroid shot as he was still four weeks premature,” Alicia says.

“I went home, but by 3pm I was in excruciating pain. [We returned to the hospital] and when they checked me after I came out of the lift, I was already 10cm dilated!”

An incredibly stressful and fast-paced birth followed, during which Alicia was told to prepare for an emergency c-section - and then a moment later that there was no time. 

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“Aiden’s heart rate had flatlined on the monitor, so the obstetrician made the quick decision to get him out with a vacuum.

“He said, ‘this is bad, but you will be okay’ and as Aiden came out he had the cord wrapped around his neck and needed CPR which my husband helped to perform!”

“I was aware of Alan crying and a lot of action going on around me. Afterwards, the midwife of 20 years came to see me and said she had never seen a baby born in this posterior position in all her years of work. 

“By that stage I was just grateful we were both alive and well.”

Birth three, with baby Arthur.

After the extreme stress of baby Aiden’s arrival, Alicia was afraid of the same thing happening again. 

“I was very fearful that I would get to hospital too late, so for my third birth I rang the midwife in tears as soon as I realised I was in labour.

“I was very clear about wanting an epidural and not leaving it too late. Having been through a traumatic birth, they didn’t try and argue with me this time. 

Thankfully Arthur’s birth went well, and it was a positive experience for Alicia and Alan.

“Arthur’s calm and well-managed birth really helped me to bond with him so much easier, something that had taken me a few weeks to feel with my eldest two after their hectic arrivals into the world!”

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Birth four, with baby Athena.

But it was the fourth and final birth of daughter Athena that was the most memorable for Alicia.

“I was over 39 weeks pregnant and while I had been having a few pains on and off, I was feeling okay. I even managed a trip to Coles the night before!

“That same night I slept well but woke early with a painful ‘thud’ on my cervix.”

After walking around for a bit, Alicia was feeling well enough so husband Alan went to work. 

Thankfully, something told him to turn the car around and come home, which was a relief for them both as he pulled into the driveway and heard a loud scream.

“I felt this horrendous constant pain unlike anything I had felt before with my previous births, it was as if my pelvis was ripping in two," Alicia shares.

“Alan called the ambulance after we realised I could barely move from the bed. The screaming woke up five-year-old Alexander who very calmly kept talking to the phone operator as Alan stayed with me.”

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When the first ambulance arrived, the paramedics initially planned to try and get Alicia to hospital as that was where she wanted to go. They requested another ambulance in order to help lift Alicia safely out of the house.

They all soon realised that there was no time to get to hospital.

“The second lot of paramedics arrived as they got me to the bedroom door. It was then I told the senior paramedic as I got onto my hands and knees that I needed to push. Two pushes later and Athena was born on the bedroom floor.”

Image: Supplied

While Athena was a healthy baby weighing 3.6kg, the trauma of the fast birth meant that Alicia suffered third degree tears and needed surgery. 

“I have had a lot of physiotherapy and my bowel area is still weak, but I can’t complain as Athena and I are healthy. I do know however that I am done – no more babies for me!”

For Alicia, the fact she gave birth at home was not really something to celebrate.

“It was a happy story in the end, but it was very scary as I didn’t know what was happening. For me personally, my home birth experience was terrifying.

“I would have preferred a well-managed hospital birth like I had with Arthur, but I guess that everyone is different when it comes to the type of birth that suits them!”

If you have an amazing birth story to share, let us know by emailing some details to: [email protected] and including 'My Birth Story' in the subject line.

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