Survival

First-time mum’s story – ‘My intestines fell out in the shower!’

Mel speaks out about her experience

First-time mum Mel Bremner, 39, was in the shower when something unexpected happened. Here, she tells the story in her own words…

‘Please come for a drink after work,’ my friend Jo begged as we worked together at a pizza restaurant.

‘Okay,’ I sighed.

So after we’d finished, we headed to a nearby bar.

‘I’ve invited my housemate, Aidan too,’ said Jo.

When Aidan rocked up, I was pleasantly surprised.

Handsome and charming, it felt like we’d known each other for years.

He and I started dating and quickly became a couple and moved in together.

A few months later, I realised my period was late.

‘I can’t be, can I?’ I gasped.

Doing a quick pregnancy test, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when two lines appeared on the stick.

‘I’m pregnant,’ I blurted when Aidan came home.

Shocked, he didn’t know what to say, but once we both got our heads around the news we were excited to start a family.

At 20 weeks, we found out we were having a girl and the rest of my pregnancy flew by.

Mel Bremner with her intestines
I had to sit and hold my intestines (Credit: Supplied)

But by 41 weeks I still hadn’t given birth.

I wasn’t dilating – despite medical intervention.

‘We’re going to have to perform an emergency C-section,’ the doctor said.

I was whisked into theatre and our baby girl – who we named Nadie – was born.

‘She’s beautiful,’ I cooed, as midwives placed her on my chest.

She had a cute button nose and a shock of dark hair.

Sore after the op, I spent a few days in hospital before nurses inspected my wound and allowed me to go home.

‘What are those two white blobs in the middle of your scar?’ Aidan asked, as we checked it.

‘I’m not sure,’ I said, puzzled. ‘But I’m sure it’ll be fine.’

Once home, I tried to take it easy – not doing any heavy lifting or exercise.

‘Ah, what a shame,’ I sighed, jokingly. ‘I won’t be able to vacuum or do any housework for a while.’

‘Don’t get used to it,’ Aidan laughed.

The next day – five days after I’d given birth – I woke at 7.30am to give Nadie her morning feed and popped her gently back in her cot.

‘I’m going to nip in the shower while she snoozes,’ I whispered to Aidan as he lay in bed, beside Nadie’s bassinet.

‘Mmm,’ he groaned groggily, barely lifting his head from the pillow.

Sleep deprivation was hitting us both hard and I was determined to make the most of any baby-free minutes.

Me with my family
Me with my family (Credit: Supplied)

I made myself breakfast before heading to the bathroom and running the shower.

‘Ah bliss,’ I sighed as the hot water splashed over me.

But just as I bent down to pick up the shampoo bottle, I felt a tear and looked down at my C-section scar.

It had burst open and my organs were literally spilling out!

Instinctively, I grabbed hold of my intestines.

They felt warm and slimy in my hands.

‘Arrghh!’ I screeched.

I realised if I shouted, it would put pressure on my stomach and my intestines would completely fall out so I was just trying to call out calmly to Aidan.

‘Babe!’ I cried.

He leapt out of bed and ran to the shower.

‘What on earth..?’ he said, catching sight of me.

‘You need to call emergency,’ I told him.

‘Let’s get you sitting down first,’ he said, helping me hobble to the sofa.

Aidan fetched a towel to cover my naked body, while an ambo rushed to our home.

We've now got three amazing kids
We’ve now got three amazing kids (Credit: Supplied)

We contemplated wrapping my organs in cling film, but decided to wait for paramedics to arrive instead, so I sat holding my intestines the whole time – terrified to move my hands.

It was all gurgling around and wriggling. It was awful.

‘Oh God, I’m holding my insides!’ I squirmed, trying not to pass out or throw up.

In shock, it didn’t hurt too much and I’ve always had a high pain threshold.

Medics turned up and called an air ambulance to fly me to hospital.

My mum Sue dashed over to look after Nadie and I was wheeled into surgery as soon as I got to the hospital.

There, surgeons pushed my intestines back inside and stitched me up.

After a few days, I was allowed home again.

I bounced back from the op this time, but I was devastated I’d had to leave my newborn daughter while I was in hospital – she wasn’t even a week old.

I’ll never get back those first few special days.

The consultant later speculated he had cut the end of the thread too short while stitching me up, or not tied the knot tightly enough.

Those white blobs had been the first sign that something wasn’t quite right.

Nadie is now seven and we joke about what happened, although it wasn’t funny at the time!

Aidan and I have since added to our family with our daughters, Allie, now five, and Robyn, three.

They were both born by caesarean despite my traumatic experience.

People think a C-section is the easy way out, but what happened to me proves it’s really not. ●

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