Woman Gives Birth on Subway All By Herself

nyc subwayOne of my biggest fears when riding the subway during pregnancy was going into labor while deep under the city. That and getting a seat. Wanda Dueno faced that fear head on when she was on a J train after leaving a friend's house in Queens to go to her sister's place in the Bronx and went into labor. Despite trying to keep him in, baby boy was ready.

Typically there are tons of people on the subway, but when Wanda was giving birth, no one was on the train with her. No one? It was because it was 1:30 a.m. This is the clincher for me on why I think Wanda is extremely brave. I'm a lifelong New Yorker and I would never take the subway alone at 1:30 a.m.


But Wanda did. And now she has an incredible birth story to tell her little one someday.

I've seen lots of things happen on the subway in New York City. Wild, crazy, dirty, criminal things. But this 24-year-old mama shows us all that amazing things happen there, too. Wanda's due date wasn't for five days, and her own birthday was coming up, so she was in NYC from Philadelphia to visit family and friends. She already has a 1-year-old son, so she knew what she was in for when it comes to giving birth, knew those dates are often just guesses, and thought it was no big deal to travel and even take the train alone.

When her contractions began, she hit the emergency button on the train, but baby wasn't going to wait the few short minutes it took the conductor to arrive. Birth in minutes. How great would it be if it was always that easy? The 7-pound, 2-ounce little boy was born just as the train pulled into the Chambers Street station in Downtown Manhattan. Mama named him Libasse. Thankfully NOT Metrocard as her sister suggested.

What a great birth story and a happy subway tale. And while I'm all about natural birth and amazing stories like this, I still wouldn't recommend riding the subway solo after midnight.

Do you worry about traveling anywhere close to your due date? Do you think you would stay calm and give birth alone if faced with a similar situation as Wanda?


Image via Spencer T./Flickr

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