Extraordinary mum delivers ‘surprise’ baby alone in hotel room using YouTube
When Tia Freeman started getting really bad stomach cramps on a long-haul flight to visit a friend, she just assumed she’s eaten something a bit dodgy.
But by the time she got to customs the pain was so bad she was struggling to stand and when she finally made it to her hotel room she realised she was in labour.
Stuck in a country where she didn’t speak the language or know the emergency number, she realised she was going to have to deliver her baby by herself.
The 22-year-old was still coming to terms with being pregnant as she only realised in her third trimester.
The contraception pill she uses means she doesn’t have regular periods and she didn’t gain any weight, so she had absolutely no idea.
When she finally found out she was in shock and decided to keep it a secret, which involved going to visit a friend in Germany as planned.
But her baby decided he was ready to make his big entrance while she was staying in Istanbul on a stopover.
She shared her incredible story on Twitter, saying: "So I’m in a foreign country, where no one speaks English, I don’t know this country’s emergency number, and I have no clue what to do.
"So in true millennial form I decided to YouTube it.
"If no one else had my back the internet would! So here my a** is in my hotel room all by my lonesome learning how to deliver my own baby.
"I don’t have time to be nervous. It’s time to get s*** done. I spring into action.
"It’s weird how focused a person becomes when they’re adrenaline starts going.
"Because at no point ever did I freak out. Like I just did what I had to do."
Tia, who works as a computer specialist in the US Air Force, filled the bath with water and found a towel to bite down on so she didn’t scream too loudly.
She got into the position recommended online, used the clock on her phone to time the contractions and started to push.
She said: "I have never felt any pain like this in my life. I felt like I was being split open."
Because Tia was already so far along, it only took five or six pushes and within just a few minutes she met her son.
As she was getting her breath back, she decided to call him Xavier.
But there was still work to do and she knew from her panicked research she needed to deliver the placenta.
She then had to Google how to cut the umbilical cord, and improvised using shoelaces she sterilised with boiling water from the hotel room kettle.
She said: "I did a mighty fine job if I do say so myself.
"At this point exhaustion is beginning to set in. But I need to clean up the bathroom because it looked like the set of a horror movie.
"So I clean up the bathroom, breastfeed my baby, and go to sleep."
She got up the next day, as planned, and went to the airport where she had the difficult job of explaining why she now had a baby.
The embassy called in a police officer and a doctor, who checked little Xavier was healthy, and Turkish Airlines staff went out to buy the baby boy a little outfit.
After a lot of explaining, paperwork and waiting she was taken to hospital and then the airline put her up in a hotel for two weeks until little Xavier could fly home.
A month on, mum and baby are now back home and Tia is finally coming to terms with what happened.
Her incredible story has now been shared thousands of times on social media.
But giving birth unexpectedly in a different country isn’t cheap, and Mia was forced to set up a Go Fund Me page to help her pay the bills while she was away.
On the page she says: "My name is Tia Freeman and while traveling abroad I was surprised to go into labor and have my baby in Instanbul, Turkey before I could return to the States.
"After paying over a $1000+ dollars in hospital bills (because my insurance doesn’t cover me internationally), my hotel fair, taxi services, baby supplies and for my baby’s Passport and Birth Certificate.
"I am very short on funds and in dire need of help.
"Xavier Freeman (my baby boy) can’t fly until he’s two weeks old therefore we can’t return home until the 21st of March.
"I still need to pay for the rest of my stay in the hotel, food, taxi, etc. Please Please if you can donate that would be immensely appreciated. If you can not donate please spread the along!!!"
This is Tia’s full story, in her own words:
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