Lake Bell Opens Up About Feeling Guilt After Son’s Traumatic Home Birth

There is nothing scarier as a parent than whenever something happens to your child. No matter what this situation may be, we take on the bulk of the guilt, as if we really had something to do with it. Actress Lake Bell had a recent experience during the birth of her second child, and she opened up about the labor experience for the first time.

Recently, Bell was talking with her her Bless This Mess costar Dax Shepard on his podcast Armchair Expert. She described the experience as “amazing magical mayhem.” Her and her husband, Scott Campbell welcomed their second child, a boy named Ozgood in May 2017, and recalled the “egregious up and down” of her home birth in Los Angelos.

Bell shared that this was her second home birth, as they also had one for their daughter. “We had two home births. The first was with [daughter] Nova in Brooklyn. I felt very empowered … the home birth was this amazing primal bonding,” she said. “When my daughter came out, she had the [umbilical] cord wrapped around her neck, and it was very scary. She was on my chest and she wasn’t breathing. The midwife gave her three lifesaving breaths on my chest and my husband was there. She came to life and we saw it.”

But the second time around it was a completely different experience. However, she wanted to do a home birth again because of how empowered the first home birth made her feel.

She told the story of her son's home birth in detail, saying “I got pregnant again, and this time we’re in L.A. and I said, I want a home birth again. We had him at home. I was huge, he was 11 lbs. The same thing happened, I was at home and he had the cord wrapped around and he was on my chest,” Bell shared. “He was not coming to. Now you’re in really f—ing life and death. Your child is there and the entire room is trying to resuscitate him and they can’t. The paramedics are on their way, he’s still there. This person you don’t know.”

“The paramedics come in, the cord is still on so he has oxygen through my blood. They cut the cord and Scott ran out half-naked [with their son] and I was naked after my seven hours of laboring.”

It got even more complicated from there, as Bell was informed by her midwife that she was going to have to be induced so she could deliver her placenta. “I was looking at my phone as they were sewing me up and I get a little video from Scott: little Ozzy just barely taking breaths with the oxygen mask and I just passed out. Because I was like, ‘He’s alive,’ and then I just passed out,” she said.

Ozzy had to stay in the NICU for 11 days. “He was hypoxic, he was without oxygen for longer than the four minutes that is associated with being okay. … We were told that he could [have] cerebral palsy or never walk or talk. That was our reality. … Children’s Hospital Los Angeles saved his life.”

Until opening up about this experience with Shepard, Bell says she hasn't publicly shared the story of Ozzy's birth, but felt compelled to because she was so proud to share that they had left the hospital with a clean bill of health.

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