On December 11, 2011, tiny 5 foot 4 inch, Erin Kellam, gave birth to a 11 pound 11 ounce baby boy at St. Joseph's Hospital in Hamilton, Ontario. That's a whole lot of 11s. And a whole lot of baby. Like an early Christmas miracle, Kellam had this baby vaginally. Gasp! How did she do it? How could a 128 pound woman (before pregnancy) be able to have a child that big? That's almost double the size of your average baby.
Perhaps it's just one of the great mysteries of the world. Something record-breaking. So profound it belongs in Ripley's Believe It or Not. Or maybe ...
... it's just totally natural. The hospital said they believe it's the largest baby born there, but little big baby Elijah Andrew Clark isn't the biggest born in Hamilton. A larger newborn was born vaginally at McMaster University Medical Centre, though they won't say how much the child weighed. Perhaps to protect the baby from the onslaught of inappropriate fat jokes.
We sure are weight-obsessed, aren't we?
Jaws dropped over a 16 pound baby delivered via c-section; and again over a 13 pound baby born vaginally. Many couldn't believe an 11 pound 2 ounce baby could be born at home. These women and babies sure prove that it can be done. It's stories like these that every pregnant woman should read and realize that women have been birthing babies of all sizes since the start of (wo)mankind. And birth is nothing to fear. A large baby is nothing to fear.
Baby Elijah's dad, Wes Clark, said he was "relieved that he was big," adding, "I’m a little clumsy, so I’m a little nervous when it comes to smaller babies. He’s nice and big and strong already.” This made me smile.
Interestingly, the ultrasound had estimated Elijah’s weight between nine and 10 pounds -- even more proof that ultrasounds don't always show the exact number, nor should they create worry. Mama Erin's pregnancy was normal, she gained around 50 pounds, and she didn't have gestational diabetes. Her due date was December 1st, but was born at 9:34 p.m. on December 11th after about 24 hours of labor.
Kellam needed stitches and a blood transfusion, but she was in good hands and is home now and is recovering well. This first-time mom had faith in her body; she trusted that she could birth a "large" baby vaginally, and I'm really impressed that the hospital trusted in that, too.
Congrats to the new family!
Do big babies worry you? Or do you have faith in a woman's ability to birth a child even if larger than average?
Image via fruity monkey/Flickr