Lake Bell Recalls 'Life and Death' Experience with Her Son's Home Birth: 'He Was Not Coming to'

Lake Bell's son Ozzi was "in the NICU for 11 days" after being "without oxygen for longer than the 4 minutes that is associated with being okay"

'Home Again' film premiere, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA - 29 Aug 2017
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Lake Bell‘s second home birth was not the experience she was envisioning — and for a little while, she thought her son would lose his life.

“He was not coming to,” the actress, 40, said of now-2-year-old Ozgood, a.k.a. “Ozzi,” this week during an episode of Dax Shepard‘s podcast Armchair Expert. “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,” Bell continued. “The paramedics are on their way, he’s still there. This person you don’t know.”

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

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The Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later star had been “empowered” during her previous “primal bonding” experience with home birth, when she and Campbell welcomed daughter Nova in October 2014.

But it wasn’t without its complications, either. Just like with Ozzi’s birth, “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 recalled.

Bell said her son was “in the NICU for 11 days,” explaining, “He was hypoxic, he was without oxygen for longer than the 4 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.”

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Despite Ozzi’s entrance into the world, which marked the “most egregious up and down of [Bell’s] entire life,” and the period of guilt she felt, her youngster has hit his growth markers like a champ.

“I had this incredible little boy who rolled over at 2 months and walking at 9 months as if to say, ‘Mom, I got this. I’m working these milestones early so you can chill the f— out,’ ” Bell joked.

And she has a big appreciation for childbirth, which she likens to “war” but also calls “the most extraordinary ordinary thing because every motherf—er goes through it.”

“There’s no getting out of it that it hurts, or that it’s extraordinary, or that it’s life and death or high stakes, it is what it is,” Bell said.

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