AWWWW, is there a prouder-looking dad anywhere around?
Luke Kirkby, of Uralla, holds his daughter, Lauren Isabelle Kirkby, the first baby born at Tamworth hospital this year.
Mum Jo Kirkby was booked in for a Caesarean section for tomorrow when Lauren decided she couldn’t wait any longer and had to make a sooner-than-expected appearance early yesterday morning.
“So she’s decided to be a grandstander and arrive earlier than she was planned to – so maybe that’s a sign of things to come,” Mrs Kirkby said yesterday as she rested in the maternity ward after the operation.
Mrs Kirkby’s waters broke at 2.30am while the family was still up celebrating New Year’s Eve; Mrs Kirkby had been texting new-year greetings when she realised what was going on.
Earlier that night, when the family had been watching Saturday Night Fever, the baby was already signalling her intentions by kicking in utero and being very active – probably responding to the dance music of the Bee Gees, Mrs Kirkby mused.
Mr Kirkby said he stayed calm and “kept within the speed limit” as they headed towards Tamworth hospital; Lauren was born at 8.04am by emergency Caesar.
Mr Kirkby was almost unable to say how it felt to be a dad the second time around.
“Indescribable: I can’t describe it,” he said.
Lauren is a sister to Matthew, 5.
Mrs Kirkby said it felt “really good” to have Lauren finally born safely.
Mum had been told so many times by her obstetrician throughout the pregnancy to “take it easy”, because she has Type 2 diabetes and is in her late 30s, that it was a relief to finally see her little one born safely.
“She was much wanted,” Mrs Kirkby, a relieving head teacher at Walcha Central School, said.
“We moved eight times in eight years – we wanted the second baby, but we’d given up hope it was going to happen. So that whole thing of ‘relax and it will happen’ is true!
“I’m glad she’s here, because she’s been watched very closely because of a high-risk pregnancy.
“In theatre ... she didn’t make a sound. I said to the nurse, ‘Is she all right?’ and she said, ‘Yeah’. But she’s been very quiet: she’s very special.”