Russell is a home boy

Derek Montague
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A second home-birth for Labrador couple was not quite planned that way

Amanda Dinsmore holds her newborn baby, Russell, while her husband Darren holds their oldest son, Jasper. Just like his big brother, Russell was born at home, rather than a hospital.

Amanda Dinsmore still had eight days to go until her second child was due to be born. It was Saturday, Feb. 8 and her mother was arriving at the Goose Bay airport at 6 p.m.

After Amanda and her husband, Pastor Darren Dinsmore of the Happy Valley Baptist Church, picked up her mother and arrived back to their home in Northwest River, something unexpected happened.

“I came back, had a cup of tea and then we’re getting ready for bed and the pain started,” Amanda explained during a recent interview.

“The last one was a really long labour so I said, ‘we’ll relax, go to bed and maybe it’ll stop.’”

But the pain didn’t stop. Instead, it rapidly grew in intensity. Amanda realized the baby was coming in a hurry.

“By the time we got to the truck in the driveway, I realized there was no way we were going to make it (to the hospital in Goose Bay),” Amanda said.

“It was pretty evident it was on its way,” added Darren. “So I ran in and called the ambulance.”


A baby and a bench

Amanda and Darren decided they would have the baby in their living room, with nothing but a bench to use as support.

Amazingly, this would be the second time Amanda would give birth at home. In May of 2012, when the couple still lived in Ontario, they planned to have their first child, Jasper, at home.

Unlike in Labrador, midwives are still available in Ontario. So, giving birth at home seemed preferable to a maternity ward.

“The midwives were amazing. They are so wonderful,” Amanda noted. “They do the prenatal with focus on education and natural childbirth.”

Shortly after moving to Labrador in May 2013, Amanda became pregnant. Due to a lack of midwives in the area, they decided to have their second child born in the hospital. But Amanda was still hoping for a home birth, as long as it could be done safely.

“Early in the pregnancy I said, ‘Well Lord, if you can promise me a safe delivery I would like to have him at home.’”

Two paramedics arrived to the Dinsmore’s home just in time. According to the couple, the paramedics wanted to get Amanda into the ambulance, but she was convinced the baby was coming too fast.

“They were trying to convince me that we were still going to get into the ambulance, but I was telling them no,” Amanda recalled.

“They thought there was still going to be time. But they didn’t know what I knew.”


Here comes Russell

After just one hour and 15 minutes of labour, Amanda gave birth to a beautiful boy in her living room.

Little Russell, weighing six pounds, seven ounces, arrived without a hitch. It was everything Darren and Amanda could have wished for.

“After the baby was born I said, ‘Well Lord, it looks like you’ve answered my prayers,’” Amanda said.

Organizations: Happy Valley Baptist Church

Geographic location: Goose Bay, Northwest, Ontario Labrador

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Recent comments

  • Dawn
    February 24, 2014 - 18:48

    Amazing. Praise the Lord. So glad it all worked out. What a testimony to the ambulance workers and your community.

  • Theresa Johnston
    February 24, 2014 - 13:53

    Wow! God still answers prayers. Congratulations!