Size 6 Student Thought Contractions Were IBS And Didn't Realise She Was Pregnant Until She Was In Labour
Generally, expectant mothers get at least seven months to prepare to welcome their little bundle of joy - but for one woman it was more like seven hours.
Beth Martin, 18, from Blackpool, got the surprise of her life when she went into labour while studying at college - and she didn't even realise she was pregnant.
The Border Force student first realised something was amiss when she collapsed in college and started getting sharp pains in her abdomen, only later to realise this was the start of her labour.
Beth continued getting contractions from Thursday right through to Saturday evening, at first putting them down to a bad case of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It was only until she started bleeding, that a 111 call operator advised her to get to hospital right away.
Known as a 'cryptic pregnancy', Beth's baby had grown behind her ribs, showing no physical bump. The mum had even taken two pregnancy tests which showed up negative.
Recalling the moment she found out she was pregnant, Beth said: "By the time I got to the hospital I was in so much pain.
"A nurse told me straight away I looked pregnant - and then I discovered I've been in labour for 69 hours.
"I had seven hours to prepare for the fact I was about to become a mum. My two older brothers - Leo, 22 and Liam 24, both thought I was playing a prank."
Maizie Loraine Martin, weighing 7 lbs 5 oz, was born after 76 hours of labour, three hours of pushing and less than 24 hours notice for Beth.
"I'd never wanted to have kids but now I can't imagine my life without her," Beth said. "My dad was so happy, and my mum came after, shaking her head - we were all in shock."
Beth had been training to become part of the UK's Border Force, and undertaking extreme physical activity such as army and police riot training throughout her pregnancy.
Despite taking two negative pregnancy tests, Beth noticed she had put on a small bit of weight and was increasingly tired, the latter of which she put down to her training.
She said, "I'd taken a pregnancy tests two months before Maizie was born in October, 2018.
"Someone at work had said I looked pregnant and I remember thinking how rude she was.
"I was doing a course into uniformed public services and had my heart set on becoming part of Border Force.
"My education was sport based, about 70 hours a week of intense physical activity. The week before I'd had Maizie, I was doing riot police force training, where I had horses chasing me - it seemed surreal."
Beth, who has since returned to college after just three month of maternity leave, said: "I've absolutely loved becoming a mum - Maizie is the best thing in my life."
Cryptic pregnancies, otherwise known as stealth pregnancies, are a form of pregnancy that conventional testing methods don't pick up. It's thought roughly 1 in 475 births start as cryptic pregnancies, according to a study in National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Featured Image Credit: Caters