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Baby comes shortly after mom was sent home from Harrison
Trenidy Hedrick doesn’t think that her son should have been born in the passenger seat of a three-door Saturn while a state trooper stood by on the side of State Route 3 near the Newberry Hill exit in Silverdale.
Hedrick is sitting on a hospital bed in room 9 of the maternity ward at Harrison Medical Center in Silverdale on Tuesday afternoon. She’s wearing jeans and a striped shirt while holding her beautiful baby boy in her arms. Hedrick’s boyfriend is asleep on a nearby couch.
Hedrick’s son, James Joseph, was born at 3:20 a.m. on Monday, and weighed 7 pounds 5 ounces and measured 19 inches long. James came into this world shortly after Hedrick and her friend, Alaina Stivenson, who was driving Hedrick back to Harrison after she was discharged the night before, were pulled over by a state trooper for speeding.
Hedrick first went to the hospital at about 11 p.m. Sunday night. She had been experiencing contractions every two to five minutes apart for about an hour.
When she got to the hospital, she says she was checked and was dilated four centimeters. An hour or so later, she says a doctor came in and didn’t measure her again, but gave her a shot and sent her home. The plan was for her to come back the next day to be induced.
At home at around 1 a.m., she began having “really bad contractions,” she said.
“I felt like something was really wrong. I was having really bad pains and when I got up off the couch, there was water everywhere.”
They got into Stivenson’s car at about 2:45 a.m. and headed back to Silverdale as fast as they could. The baby was born at 3:20 a.m.
“We were in Gorst and he was crowning so I was going like 90 mph to get her to the hospital,” Stivenson said.
At that point, Hedrick was trying her best to not have the baby before getting to the hospital.
“She’s like, ‘Don’t push. Don’t push,’” Hedrick recalls Stivenson telling her. “But, I wanted to push really bad. It felt better to push.”
Shortly after passing the Newberry Hill Road exit, Stivenson was pulled over by a state trooper. Stivenson was amazed that the trooper wouldn’t escort her and Hedrick to the hospital.
“He just stood there and didn’t help delivering the baby at all,” Stivenson said. “He’s like, ‘I don’t know what to do’ and I said, ‘You think I know what I’m doing? I’m not a doctor.’ The head of the baby was out so I pulled (Hedrick’s) clothes off and caught the baby.”
Hedrick is grateful for her friend’s help.
“She said, ‘push,’” Hedrick said. “I pushed three times and he was out.”
Stivenson said the baby was cold and a blanket the trooper gave her was scratchy so she wrapped him up in her coat. Stivenson said Hedrick did a great job and she’s proud of her.
Like Stivenson, Hedrick was also less than impressed by the trooper.
“He stood there not knowing what to do,” she said. “I said, ‘If you’re not going to help me, then at least call an ambulance.’ He looked kind of mad that I yelled at him, but I was in a lot of pain. After the baby was out, he called an ambulance.”
Trooper Russ Winger, a regional spokesman for the state patrol, said an aid car was called right away by radio before the baby was born.
“It’s certainly not prudent to let someone continue (driving) if the birth is that imminent,” Winger said. “It’s usually safer for aid to respond than to let someone continue, especially when they are driving like that. As far as I know, he made the right call on it and it was within minutes of making the stop that the baby came along.”
Winger said Wednesday afternoon that he had not spoken with the trooper directly, but stood by his decisions.
“We did what we could and it all came out OK,” Winger said. “I don’t know what other moves that trooper could have made ... He’ll get second-guessed no matter what he did. But he made the right decision in making the aid call. From what I gather, there wasn’t really any time to do anything else.”
Hedrick also isn’t pleased that she was discharged and sent home Sunday night, only to have to come right back to the hospital.
“What that says to me is they weren’t looking out for (the baby’s) best interests and his health,” Hedrick said. “That’s what it said to me.”
Dr. M.H. Anderson, chief medical officer at Harrison Medical Center, said in a written statement that Hedrick was observed by a board-certified obstetrician and observed by medical staff for two hours “and was determined not to be in active labor and left Harrison not in active labor.”
Anderson continued, “Medical staff at Harrison followed proper procedure with Ms. Hedrick and discharged her because she was not in active labor. There’s no way to predict the onset of active labor. After delivering the baby, both mother and baby were transported by ambulance to Harrison for evaluation. Both mother and baby are doing fine.”