Gemma: first baby born at The Mother Baby Center

In year one, 5,153 babies were delivered at The Mother Baby Center.

Michael and Kristin Towle describe their fourth child, Gemma, as a real go-getter. And, one might add, she has perfect timing.

Although she was due on Jan. 31, 2013, she managed to keep her parents waiting just long enough to be the first baby born at The Mother Baby Center, a building that combines Abbott Northwestern Hospital’s maternal and fetal services with Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota’s pediatric specialty care.

The Towles knew that The Mother Baby Center would open around the due date. “As we learned more about it, we were kind of hoping we’d end up there,” said Michael. Still, it seemed quite unlikely that their baby would be five days late.

As Jan. 31 came and went, they began to wonder. Finally, in the wee hours of Feb. 4, Kristin started having contractions. The couple was in touch with their midwife, Kathrine Simon, CNM, and at about 9:15 a.m. they decided it was time to go to the hospital. The Mother Baby Center had officially opened its doors at 7 a.m.

“Everyone was so excited when we got there,” said Kristin. The couple had made arrangements with their midwife to have a water birth, so after labor progressed, they were brought to the water birth room. “It was a beautiful, calming room,” recalled Kristin. “And Kathrine, the nurses and the entire team did a phenomenal job of preparing us.”

Michael noted that his wife had always had positive birth experiences, but during the water birth, she seemed particularly serene and confident. Weighing in at 7 pounds, 6 ounces, Gemma was born at 11:18 that morning.

Before long, Gemma, Kristin and Michael were back in their own room, soon to be joined by Gemma’s brothers, James and Michael Jr., and her sister, Sabina. “The whole experience was positive for us,” said Kristin. They appreciated that their choice of using a midwife was supported and affirmed by The Mother Baby Center, and that their desire to keep things simple and natural was respected.

As Gemma’s first birthday approached, the Towles were preparing themselves and their household for life with an active toddler. “Even when she was still in my tummy, we would always marvel at how active she was,” said Kristin. “She started to crawl at an early age, is very verbal and has a lot of energy. Of course, she’s trying to keep up with her brothers and sister.”

“It’s been a joyful and eventful year for our family – we’re grateful for all that was done at The Mother Baby Center to make Gemma’s birth such a memorable experience.”

All about Gemma
Favorite food: Anything with mango in it
First word: Ma-ma
Most recent milestone: Standing up on her own
Favorite toy: An empty box, especially if she can crawl into it
What makes her laugh: Papa goofing around with her siblings: Michael, James or Sabina
Most resembles: She bears an uncanny resemblance to her Grandma Peggy

See and learn more about The Mother Baby Center.