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Baby in big hurry By Taylah Eastwell
The relieved couple welcomed their first girl, Bonnie.
Jenae Petersen holds baby Bonnie for the first time and shares a laugh of relief with husband Paul after a speedy trip to the hospital. Pictures: ENG PHOTOGRAPHY AND DESIGN look at me and just said ‘Angliss? Follow us’,” she said. By this stage, Ms Petersen’s mind was preoccupied, but being pulled over by police while in the pointy-end of labour during the Covid-19 pandemic where the pair were not meant to be outside of their 5km radius made an incredibly stressful situation all the more intense. But the two Mooroolbark officers were quick to act,
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with Senior Constable David Grey and Constable Jason Lloyd-Sanderson jumping back in their police car and escorting the couple - at a slight speed - through Kilsyth, The Basin and Ferntree Gully until they reached the Angliss. “There were no questions asked, they just took off and said follow us,” Ms Petersen said. “My husband is happy he got his Fast and Furious moment down Forest Road,” she laughed.
Husband Paul said he probably passed a total of five other cars for the whole trip. “We pulled up straight outside the door where my second support person was waiting and she grabbed the wheelchair after seeing how full on I was,” Ms Petersen said. While Paul moved the car from the ambulance park, the two police officers picked up Ms Petersen’s bags and walked her in to the elevator before saying their goodbyes and good-lucks. Once up in the maternity ward, Ms Petersen made it onto the bed before Paul caught up with her after parking the car. “He helped me onto the bed and I literally rolled on my side and she was head out. The nurses were saying ‘you can relax, you’re here, you made it to hospital, just relax’. Her head came out and with a little push during my next contraction she was here,” Ms Petersen said. After arriving at the hospital with the police escort, it only took Bonnie seven minutes to enter the world - with Ms Petersen only in the birthing room for mere minutes. Continued page 6
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Many minds wonder what happens if you are pulled over while speeding to the hospital in labour, but for little Bonnie Petersen and her parents, that exact question will prompt one of the greatest 21st birthday stories imaginable. When Jenae Petersen’s waters broke around 11.25pm on Saturday 14 August, her husband Paul knew he didn’t have time to waste. Ms Petersen had a history of short labours with their two young sons, and Paul wasn’t taking any chances on a last minute roadside birth. After the couple frantically called Ms Petersen’s sister-in-law to come and watch their boys, they piled into the car and left their Mooroolbark home for the Angliss Hospital in Upper Ferntree Gully. “When my waters broke that was the first sign of labour and that was when the contractions started between four and five minutes apart,” Ms Petersen said. “I went into labour pretty much straight away. We got into the car and realised we needed petrol, so we chucked some petrol in but by the time we got from Manchester Road to just before the basketball stadiums on Liverpool Road I had completely changed. I couldn’t talk, I was in full blown labour, so my husband started speeding,” she said. The distressed couple were doing their best to make it to the hospital, with little Bonnie in a rush to enter the world, when they noticed the dreaded blue and red flashing lights in their rear-view mirror. “We saw the coppers chuck a u-turn behind us. We kept going, not as fast, but they pulled us over and my husband jumped out and said ‘my wife is in labour I’ve got to get her to hospital’,” Ms Petersen explained. “They shone their torch in and had one