December 8, 2021

First baby of the year full of surprises

Couldn't wait for scheduled C-section

Nick Graziano/contributing photographer

Michelle Watson kisses her newborn, Livia Maya Watson, Tuesday morning. Livia is the first child born in Cortland County this year, at 5:35 p.m. Monday at Cortland Regional Medical Center.

CORTLAND — Livia Maya Watson has been surprising her parents since her conception.

Born at 5:35 p.m. Monday at Cortland Regional Medical Center, the 7-pound, 7-ounce baby with a full head of black hair, was the hospital’s first baby of the year.

Besides media attention, the family will get a gift basket from the hospital — her parents Derrick and Michelle Watson of Cortland are just happy their third girl is healthy.

The pair thought they were done having children, but when Michelle Watson wasn’t feeling well, she discovered that a baby had been growing inside her for 23 weeks.

“I thought maybe it was just a bud, but she was 23 weeks,” Watson said.

Michelle Watson is in her 40s, so she’s considered to be of advanced maternal age. As a result, the couple was more nervous about this pregnancy. So she had regular checkups to make sure the baby girl was healthy.

“I saw all four chambers of her heart and her kidney, before I met her,” said Michelle Watson.

Watson was scheduled for a Caesarean section today, but on Monday Livia had other ideas. Michelle Watson, with strong contractions, called an ambulance Monday afternoon to take her to the hospital.

Parents Derrick and Michelle Watson sit with their newborn, Livia Maya Watson, Tuesday morning. Livia was 7 pounds, 7 ounces at birth.

Both she and her husband, who was at the store getting her pickles at the time, were worried. Their whole plan to drop their other daughters off at school then come to the hospital for the scheduled delivery was shot.

A few hours after arriving at the hospital Monday, Livia was born. Their worries ended.

“She’s perfect,” said Michelle Watson, between laying kisses on her newborn’s head.

She is now the youngest sister to 20-year-old Derrick Watson Jr., who lives elsewhere, 12-year-old Lazetta Watson, and 7-year-old Layonna Watson.

Baby No. 2 a healthy girl

The second baby born this year at Cortland Regional Medical Center is an 8-pound, 20-inch girl, Madilynn Clark, born at 12:40 a.m. Tuesday to Marybeth Towers.

Derrick Watson Sr. takes comfort in the fact that while he may be the only man in the house, his
daughters are into sports like him.

“Once you have a girl, everything changes,” he said. “It’s different with a girl. The world is just about them.”

Watson admitted sometimes he has to escape the drama of sisterly fights, but said he “wouldn’t change it for nothing.”

“I love it,” he said.

Michelle Watson was looking forward to getting some sleep. But her pickle cravings haven’t ended.

That’s OK. Her husband dutifully brought a jar to the hospital.