Oh, baby! 2013's 1st born in Stark County a boy!Twenty-seven hours of labor without pain medication Tuesday and Fressia Alexander, a first-time mother and native of Peru, along with her husband, Keith Alexander, welcomed their son — and Stark County’s first baby of 2013 — to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Dickinson.
By: Betsy Simon, The Dickinson Press
Twenty-seven hours of labor without pain medication Tuesday and Fressia Alexander, a first-time mother and native of Peru, along with her husband, Keith Alexander, welcomed their son — and Stark County’s first baby of 2013 — to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Dickinson.
“When the doctors and nurses told me his head was already out, all I could think was that I thought it would have been a lot worse pain,” Fressia said.
At 7 pounds, 10-1/2 ounces and 21-inches long, Sebastian Liam Alexander arrived two days before his due date.
And he didn’t come without briefly scaring his parents and Fressia’s mother and grandmother, who flew in from Peru to greet and spend about a month with their grandbaby.
“His eyes were open and he was looking around, but he wasn’t breathing,” Keith recalled of Sebastian’s delivery. “They had to give him oxygen to get him breathing, but even then I felt that he would be OK.”
For reassurance from a professional that her first born was in good hands, Fressia looked to an off-duty nurse who had stayed by her side throughout the labor.
“I asked her if Sebastian would be OK even if he did not cry at first, and she promised me he would be fine and he was,” Fressia said, looking down at her son, who wore a baby blue sock hat and a slight smile as he rested with his eyes closed in his mother’s arms less than 24 hours after his birth. “The nurses really encouraged me, and when I said I wanted a natural birth, one of the nurses said she had delivered that way four times. That’s when I knew I could do it at least once.”
The Alexanders didn’t realize, though, that their son would be the first baby of the new year until just before he arrived, though Fressia said it didn’t make her any difference.
“The first baby of the New Year isn’t a big deal in Peru, so when they told me, I didn’t know it would be a big thing,” she said. “The best gift was just to have him out finally, although it didn’t really feel that bad.”
While he’ll never really know what labor is like, Keith said Fressia attempted to show him.
“She had a long labor and I went through labor pain too when she squeezed my arm through my shirt with each contraction,” he joked. “And I was thinking that if she had had him on Dec. 31, we could count him on our taxes for last year.”
The one thing that may still be up in the air is Sebastian’s middle name.
“As for his middle name, I saw the name Liam in a magazine once and liked it, although my husband does not,” Fressia said. “But I always wanted to name my first son Sebastian, which is pronounced differently in Peru.”
Even Fressia’s relatives in Peru didn’t miss out on the excitement of Sebastian’s delivery.
“While I was having contractions, we Skyped with friends and family in Peru,” Fressia said. “I have a friend there who is an obstetrician and they encouraged me to breath and followed my progress every step of the way.”