Talk about a wild ride.
On Sunday, Kentucky mom Heather Skaats gave birth on the side of a road while her five other children sat in the car.
“I was having light contractions before we left, so I figured I had time to run an errand," Skaats, 34, told TODAY Parents, noting that her due date was three weeks away and she labored for hours with her older children.
“I thought I wouldn’t have a baby in my arms until eight or ten hours later,” she said.
But suddenly Skaats’s contractions intensified and started coming very close together, an indication that labor has begun.
Skaats said she started driving faster, in hopes that she could have a home water birth as planned. But it quickly became clear that there wasn’t going to be enough time.
“I pulled over — assured the kids that everything was OK — and then I grabbed my phone and got out of the van,” Skaats shared.
Skaats said was in a squat position on the ground when her water broke.
“I put my hand down there and his head started coming out with his body,” she said. “I didn’t even have to push. It was so quick. I was on the phone with my husband, Nick, and 20 seconds later, I was like, ‘He’s here!’”
Skaats was able to catch the little boy, who weighed seven pounds.
“He started crying right away, and he just opened his eyes and looked at me and I said, ‘Yeah, buddy that was fun, huh?’” Skaats recalled.
With the baby still attached to her placenta inside her body, Skaats slowly got back into the vehicle where her children, Kaelynn, 13, Aneleigh, 11, Austin, 6, Luke, 3, and Alyssa, 2, were eager to meet their new sibling. Skaats and her husband are also parents to Leilah, who died of cancer when she was 4 in 2016.
“I wrapped him in a blanket and drove with him close to my chest,” Skaats said. “I think the kids were in shock. They were pretty quiet.”
Once they finally got to the house, Skaats delivered her placenta in the shower, with help from her 13-year-old daughter, Kaelynn. Soon after, Skaat’s midwife arrived.
"We had to pick the grass off him," Skaats shared.
“I think having having home births in the past sort of taught me to trust my body,” Skaats said, explaining how she was able to remain calm. “Knowing the process really helped.”
Skaats and her husband are still working on a name for the newest member of their family. They’re currently considering Porter or Wolf — the street names near where he was born.