Skarlette Ruiz smiles as she recaps her son Paulo’s unusual birth story: An urgent arrival on the Urgent Care sidewalk, just steps away from Cox Branson’s front doors.
“I live about an hour away, so I was really paying attention to the time between my contractions,” says Ruiz, who lives in Cape Fair. “When they suddenly got closer together, I called my dad at work and told him it was time to go!”
By the time Ruiz got to the hospital’s entrance Saturday afternoon, her water broke on the sidewalk and she crouched down on her hands and knees, afraid to move.
“My dad frantically yelled for the Urgent Care staff because I felt the baby coming,” she recalls. “I was so afraid to stand up. It just all happened so fast.”
Dr. Heather Bridges was working in Urgent Care when she heard a frantic knock on the door.
“I heard a yell for help coming down the hall, so I ran out to the parking lot to find a woman delivering the baby on the sidewalk," says Bridges. “When I got to her side, the grandfather had already caught the baby and was holding him.”
Bridges clamped and cut the cord. “He had a strong cry, and I knew immediately when I heard that crying that everything was going to be okay,” she says. “The mom was feeling hot and her hair was down. Our nurse Jennifer used her own ponytail holder to tie up the mother’s hair. EMTs and fire fighters helped give her privacy and clean up the area, so it was just a great group effort. So proud of our team!”
The Labor and Delivery staff arrived to transport Ruiz and her baby safely to their room. Baby Paulo was checked out and was a perfect 8 lbs. 1 oz. and was 20 ½ inches long.
“Everyone took amazing care of us even though our story was kind of crazy,” Ruiz says. “I’m so thankful for the staff and that Paulo is healthy due to the circumstances.”
Paulo will join 2-year-old sister Lucy at home. Hospital staff says they’re just proud to be part of the family’s exciting – and very unusual – day.
“I’ve been a nurse for 30 years, and we’ve never had a sidewalk story,” says Joyce Abernathy, RN. ”This one has a happy ending and we’re so happy to be part of Paulo’s life. He’s just perfect.”