Not only is one Canadian mom being hailed a rockstar for going into labor with triplets while at home and maintaining her calm, but she also saved one of her children’s lives by performing CPR while still in labor with the other two! Just over a year ago Danielle Johnston went into labor at 32 weeks gestation while at home, but after delivering her first child she noticed she didn’t seem to be breathing well.
Johnston told The National Post that she had previously returned from a doctor’s appointment when she began to experience “wicked contractions” while at home. She ended up delivering her first of the triplets, daughter Karlee but noticed that she didn’t appear to be breathing well.
“Her breathing was really shallow and lagging so I just gave her CPR and pumped her chest until the ambulance came,” Johnston said, despite still being in labor with her other two babies. Johnston, who lives approximately about 130 kilometers southeast of Regina, said it took the ambulance over 45 minutes to arrive, and she kept performing CPR the entire time.
"I just kept doing CPR on the baby and ... meanwhile I have two more inside me and I'm fighting contractions," she told HuffPost Canada of the ordeal.
When paramedics arrived little Karlee was given oxygen and the baby and her mother were transported to the hospital. Johnston ended up delivering her other two children, sons Liam and Jack, by cesarean section. While Karlee was born last year on July 16, her triplet brothers were born on July 17, giving them different birthdays.
Johnston is now a mom of seven children and credits her oldest son Dillon, who was 15 years old at the time, for helping her after she delivered Karlee. While her younger children were already in bed when she went into labor, Dillon called for the ambulance, helped his mother to the couch after delivering Karlee and ran to the end of the road to flag down the ambulance. Johnston’s husband Trevor arrived home to find his oldest son at the end of the road, Johnston laughed when she recalled Dillon’s explanation of his actions to her husband. "He just kind of said 'Mom had a baby and I have to wait for the ambulance'."
She did tell the Post that she thinks Dillon should consider becoming an EMT in the future. "Because he was so calm and cool and collected," Johnston said. "It was just amazing for a kid. Jeeze, he just did wonderful. I’m so proud of him."
The mom of seven is a school bus driver and said that she learned CPR from her local Mayor who teaches classes.
Johnston told HuffPost Canada that she did what she had to do in an unexpected situation. "I don't think you have any choice. You just do it," she said.