Let's say you're a 15-year-old boy just sitting around playing Xbox, and your mom calls out from the bathroom because she's giving birth to your baby brother two weeks early. "Call 911!" she says. Do you 1) run screaming from the house, 2) pass out in a cold faint as soon as you see the birthing process, or 3) pick up the phone, calmly interact with the emergency responders, and help deliver the child?
Most 15-year-old boys I've known would probably have gone with the first or second option, but Texas teen Dameyon Howard not only stayed present and accounted for while helping his mother with her surprise delivery -- he tied off his baby brother's umbilical cord. With a SHOELACE.
Dameyon's mom Angela Howard had been sent home from the hospital on February 2nd after doctors said she wasn't in labor. She was still about two weeks from giving birth, they estimated. Hours later, though, Howard felt "some type of pressure" and thought she had to use the bathroom -- but that's when she felt the baby's head descending.
It happened so fast, I didn't have time to scream or be scared or anything.
Dameyon had been in the other room playing Xbox when he heard his mother ask for help.
She was like all out of breath saying, 'Call 911!' I go to this program at my school... it's like 'How to be a Man.' I remember one program segment that said when you call 911, you've got to be calm.
He started following the first responders' directions, but got briefly stymied by their instructions to tie off the umbilical cord … until he made good use of his brother's size 5 Nikes.
They said, 'Do you see the umbilical cord?' and I said, 'Yes.' They said 'Tie it with a string,' I was running down the hall and couldn't find any string... and then I saw my brother's shoe.
Dameyon balanced the phone on his shoulder while he tied off his baby brother's cord, and later the hospital described it as "a perfect job." Fourteen minutes after the call, firefighters and paramedics arrived to find everyone calm and healthy. Little Jassiah weighed eight pounds, two ounces, is super adorable -- and is going to have one hell of a story to share with his brother when he grows up.
Here's a video of the Howard family talking about their surprise delivery:
Are you surprised a teenage boy was able to step up like this to help during an unexpected birth?
Image via YouTube