A mum who welcomed her son into the world in the ocean has said her experience was “worry-free” and made her “feel really good” – despite comments from some who claim it wasn’t “sᴀɴɪᴛᴀʀʏ”. She called the ʟᴀʙᴏʀ and ᴅᴇʟɪᴠᴇʀʏ a “free birth” and had her partner catch the ᴘʟᴀᴄᴇɴᴛᴀ with a sɪᴇᴠᴇ. Josy Peukert, 37, uploaded a post on Instagram showing how she and her partner drove to the beach so she could have her baby on the shoreline of Playa Majagual, Nɪᴄᴀʀᴀɢᴜᴀ, with the water lapping at her back.
The video of waves crashing into her back as she ᴡʀɪᴛʜᴇs ɪɴ ᴘᴀɪɴ through ᴄᴏɴᴛʀᴀᴄᴛɪᴏɴs has been watched over 200,000 times. Josy said: “The waves had the same rhythm as the ᴄᴏɴᴛʀᴀᴄᴛɪᴏɴs, that smooth flow made me feel really good. I got this idea in my head I wanted to ɢɪᴠᴇ ʙɪʀᴛʜ in the ocean and because the conditions were right on the day that’s what I did.”
When Josy knew her ʟᴀʙᴏʀ was starting, her children went to stay with friends and Benni drove the couple to the beach with a ʙɪʀᴛʜɪɴɢ ᴛᴏᴏʟ kit which included towels, a bowl with a sɪᴇᴠᴇ to catch the ᴘʟᴀᴄᴇɴᴛᴀ, ɢᴀᴜᴢᴇ and paper towels. Josy said: “After Bodhi was born and wrapped up in towels, I went back into the ocean to freshen up. Then I got dressed and we packed everything up and drove home where the three of us got straight into bed. Later that evening we weighed Bodhi with luggage scales, he was 3.5kg or 7lb 6oz.”
The mum-of-four says she wanted her baby to be born with no ᴍᴇᴅɪᴄᴀʟ intervention because doctors and ᴍɪᴅᴡɪᴠᴇs take away from what the ꜰᴇᴍᴀʟᴇ body can do on its own. She said: “I wanted to be worry-free for once. My first birth was ᴛʀᴀᴜᴍᴀᴛɪᴄ in a clinic and my second birth was a home birth but by the third even a midwife in my home was too much. This time I had no doctor’s appointments or sᴄᴀɴs or outside influence. We didn’t have a due date or deadline for the baby to arrive we just trusted that our baby would make its way. I had no fears or worries to welcome a new little sᴏᴜʟ into our lives, just me, my partner and the waves. It was beautiful. The sᴏꜰᴛ ᴠᴏʟᴄᴀɴɪᴄ sand under me reminded me there is nothing else between heaven and earth, just life.”
Josy gave birth to a baby boy, Bodhi Amor Ocean Cornelius, on 27 February 2022. He is now 13 weeks old. She said: “For weeks, I monitored the tide and so when the time was right for me to ɢɪᴠᴇ ʙɪʀᴛʜ, I knew the beach would be safe for us. Bodhi is a really calm and satisfied baby. Everything is wonderful for him if he is in mama’s arms. He is just as relaxed as he was in my tummy.” Josy and her husband-to, Benni Cornelius, 42, emigrated to Nɪᴄᴀʀᴀɢᴜᴀ from Germany where they met and had their first child together, Marley Mune, now two. Between them, they have seven children.
When Bodhi was two days old, Josy shared a video and birth story on her Instagram page , where she has 6,800 followers and her video was shared all over the world. It has now been seen over 200,000 times. However, after sharing her experience, Josy received some comments of concern and ᴄʀɪᴛɪᴄɪsᴍ about her choice to free birth in the sea. One commenter asked: “Is this sᴀɴɪᴛᴀʀʏ? There’s a lot of ʙᴀᴄᴛᴇʀɪᴀ in the sea.” Another wrote: “What a sʜᴏᴄᴋ for that bubba – from a warm ᴡᴏᴍʙ to the cold ocean.”
Responding to the trolls, she added: “Bodhi was born in the midday sun when it was about 35 degrees, we weren’t worried at all that he’d be cold and I had no concerns about ᴡᴀᴛᴇʀʙᴏʀɴᴇ ɪɴꜰᴇᴄᴛɪᴏɴs. He is perfectly healthy. I did all the research I needed to to make sure it was safe. Water is a barrier that is ᴍᴇᴅɪᴄᴀʟly proven. For me and this baby I wanted to feel completely connected by my own self-directed care. This ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ was the greatest gift we could have imagined and wished for.”