Lake Bell is opening up about her home birth with son Ozgood in 2017.
The “No Strings Attached” actress spoke with Dax Shepard on his podcast “Armchair Expert” about the “egregious up and down” of the birth of her second child.
“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,” Bell recalled. “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.”
Bell then added that she was “empowered” after the birth of her daughter and wanted to do it a second time.
Yet, the birth of her son did not go as well.
“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-pounds. 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**king 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 actress then continued, “The paramedics come in, the cord is still on so he has oxygen through my blood. They cut the cord and Scott [Campbell] ran out half-naked [with their son] and I was naked after my seven hours of labouring.”
The midwife then told her she would have to be induced to deliver the 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,” Bell remembered.
Ozgood was “in the NICU for 11 days” before being released. “He was hypoxic, he was without oxygen for longer than the four minutes that is associated with being okay,” she added. “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.”
Bell said that looking back the “most egregious up and down of [her] entire life” she once felt guilty for having a home birth.
“I took it on because I insisted on having a home birth. I’ve dealt with that since. You could blame the midwife, you could blame yourself, but ultimately the result is the only thing that matters,” she said. “I’ve gone through therapy and was medicated for a year-and-a-half. I did wean myself off but I was on antidepressants to help kind of regulate. I barely take Advil but I was like, this is absolutely imperative in order for me to function.”