Few things occur with such clockwork precision yet the first baby at Pioneers Memorial Healthcare District for 2019 was born just as the clock struck midnight, an event easily rivaling the world’s most notable New Year’s Eve celebrations.
“I’m tired but feeling lucky,” said mother Navil Valenzuela, a Calexico resident. “This time it hurt, although my first time was super easy. But I’m very happy.”
The child is a healthy boy weighing in at 7 pounds and 12 ounces. This the second child for Valenzuela and her husband Kevin Retes, who works as a waiter in Mexicali.
Valenzuela named her son Kevin Roman in honor of her husband and father who is named Ramon Valenzuela. The Valenzuelas’ first child is a daughter, Rivka, age one and a half.
“I was expecting him at 1 a.m. but then the doctors told me ‘No, this is going to be a New Year’s Eve baby,’” recalled Valenzuela. “I was thinking, ‘Are you kidding?’ But when I saw him I think, ‘He’s wonderful. I cried when I saw Kevin for the first time.’”
Both the mother’s sister, Nirvana, and father accompanied her to the hospital for the exciting occasion and agreed babysitting will be no problem.
“We were here before midnight, and personally, I think the baby was waiting to be born at midnight,” said Nirvana.
Added Ramon, “First thing, the baby is healthy. The next thing, he is a New Year’s baby.”
The birth was completely natural, did not even require an epidural to ease pain and the labor routine, explained physician Vanessa Hernandez. When questioned why so many more babies seem to be born around midnight Hernandez speculated this birth may have had something to with Monday’s rainy weather.
“Often when there’s a decrease in atmospheric pressure it seems to put expecting mothers in labor,” she said. “We had four births between midnight and now (10 a.m.). And the day is still young. I didn’t even have coffee yet.”