The Kennedys’ New Years Eve plans to attend a watch party were thwarted when Crystal Kennedy began experiencing labor pains.
New Years Day would bring a new member to the Kennedy family, a third child, a brother named Daniel.
Daniel Isaiah Kennedy, weighing in at 7 pounds and 10 ounces, came into the world at 10:58 a.m. Jan. 1 as the first baby to be born this year in Faulkner County’s only birthing unit at Conway Regional Women’s Center.
A family friend remarked on Daniel’s “good coloring” Wednesday, and Crystal Kennedy’s nurse, Susan Choinski, said the patient did well through delivery.
Crystal Kennedy admitted she was at times “irritable.”
The mother and baby were healthy and ready Wednesday to go home to see Daniel’s siblings, Daisja, 8, and Joshua, 1.
The Kennedys, Conway residents since 2009, watched the New Years Eve celebration in New York City’s famous Times Square on television at home because Crystal was in pain.
“We were going to go to a party at church, but I started hurting so we stayed home. I watched the ball drop, offered up a prayer and went to bed,” she said.
Her husband James said his wife woke him at 5:30 a.m. to tell him it was time to go to the hospital.
Crystal was to be induced at 4 a.m. Jan. 11, but James said his son “didn’t want to wait that long.”
The couple arrived at the hospital at 7 a.m. on New Years Day, and their doctor, expecting Daniel’s arrival a week later, was unavailable.
Daniel was delivered by Dr. Andrew Cole, hospital staff said.
“We got in our room at (10 a.m.), and I had him at 10:58,” Crystal said.
Four hours of labor seemed brief for Crystal, who said she experienced 22 hours of labor with her first child, and seven with her second.
“Just five or six pushes and he was out,” James Kennedy said.
Crystal said she was thankful for her nurse, Susan Choinski, who she said kept her calm.
“She never lost her patience with me though I was irritable,” Crystal said.
Two nurses Crystal Kennedy said were a big part of the birth Terri Walker and Kayla Dollar.
“Terri’s a loving person who cares, and she was constantly checking on us. Same with Kayla.,” she said.
James said, “You can tell they love their jobs.”
Choinski said she’s delivered “a lot of babies,” but having the first of the new year was special.
There were 1,872 babies born in 2012 at Conway Regional Women’s Center.
(Staff writer Courtney Spradlin can be reached by email at email@example.com or by phone at 505-1236. To comment on this and other stories in the Log Cabin, log on to www.thecabin.net. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)