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Baby Kion was born at 12am today at the NMC Royal Hospital, Khalifa City, to COVID-19 warrior nurse Elsa Kurian and husband Thomas Alexander. Image Credit:

Dubai: As the world rang in 2022, over a dozen couples in the UAE welcomed their special New Year babies into the world with unequivocal thrill and gratitude.

The babies began to arrive from the stroke of midnight across all emirates, according to hospitals and parents representing a wide spectrum of nationalities. In fact, three babies were born at 12 am.

The first babies of 2022

As the clock struck 12 and the calendar slid to 2022, Baby Kion was born at the NMC Specialty Hospital, Abu Dhabi to a COVID-19 warrior nurse Elsa Kurian and husband Thomas Alexander. While the mother works as a nurse at the NMC Royal Hospital, Khalifa City, Alexander works for the Zayed Military Hospital. A normal delivery, the male baby weighed 2.99kg. He was delivered with the help of Dr Sunita Gupta, specialist obstetrician and gynaecologist at the hospital, who said she was delighted to have the honour to deliver the first baby of 2022.

An ecstatic first-time mother, Elsa told Gulf News, “It seems God gifted us with this bundle of joy as a reward to our selfless service to humanity, braving all odds, fighting this pandemic. I have nothing but gratitude on being a first-time mother making my 2022 really special.”

Simultaneously, at 12 am, Burjeel Hospital, Abu Dhabi too clocked in their first baby. Baby boy Mohammad Ashar was born to Indian expatriates Asfiya Sultan and Mohammad Abdul Almas Ansari.

Baby Mohammad Ashar
Baby Mohammad Ashar Image Credit: Supplied

Thrilled parents, Mohammed and Asfiya, said they are grateful to the Almighty for blessing them with a baby boy on the first day of the year. “We were expecting our baby to be born close to the New Year. However, welcoming our little prince on this special day is a proud and happy moment. This is our third child, and the entire family has been waiting for this day. He brings new hope to our family,” said a happy father.

The delivery of the baby Mohammed Ashar was performed by Dr Pathukutty Mohammed, Specialist Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Burjeel Hospital.

At the Thumbay University Hospital, Ajman, as the date changed to 2022, a baby boy, weighing 3.19 kg was born to Indian expatriate couple Gurpreet and Mandeep Singh.

Gurpreet
A baby boy, weighing 3.19 kg, was born to Indian expatriate couple Gurpreet and Mandeep Singh at Thumbay Hospital, Ajman. Image Credit: Supplied

Holding her first born who is yet to be named, in her arms, Gurpreet said, “It was important to have a healthy baby, but to have my first child at the start of 2022 is the icing on the cake.”

Thumbay University Hospital also reported the delivery of another baby boy and a baby girl three hours into midnight.

Baby Sabrine Assegad made her entry at 12.01 am into the world, at Burjeel Hospital, Abu Dhabi. Born to Moroccan couple M Assegad and Imane Aissi, the New Year baby is the second child in her family. Dr Fady Georges Hachem, Consultant –Obstetrics and Gynaecology, who helped the mother deliver the baby, said, “New year is an occasion that brings hope, happiness, joy and prosperity. We are delighted to welcome baby Sabrine and wish the family the best."

Sabrine Assegad
Baby Sabrine Image Credit: Supplied

Twin bundles of joy

At NMC Specialty Hospital, Sharjah, a baby girl Riyah was born at 12.04am to Indian expatriates Mohideen Fathima Rishana Shah and Shahul Hameed SM. The third child of the couple, the baby, weighing 3.03kg was was delivered with the help of Dr Selvakumari N, Consultant Obstetrics and Gynaecology, through an emergency C-section.

Baby Riyadh
Baby Riyah

In a different delivery room at NMC Royal Hospital, Sharjah, the newborn-team of nurses and neonatologists helped deliver twin sisters Seela and Seleen at 1.37am and 1.58am, respectively.

Seela and Seleen
Seela and Seleen Image Credit: Supplied

The Egyptian parents Nada Eid Mohamed and Mohamed Said ElKhadoary were truly ecstatic and said, “We are grateful to Allah for this truly blessed day.”

Dr Ashraf Moawad, Consultant Obstetrics and Gynaecology and IVF and Dr Mohamed Fadi, Specialist, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, said, “Although the little girls weigh 2.3kg and 1.6kg respectively, they are doing good and both the mother and the twins are doing fine."

At 1.29am, baby boy Humaid Hassan Alshaiba Alhattawi was born to Emirati couple Hassan Alshaiba Alhattawi and Ayesha Mubarak Almamari at Burjeel Hospital, Abdu Dhabi.

Baby Humaid
Baby Humaid Image Credit: Supplied

Dr Sausan Abdul Rahman, Consultant – Obstetrics and Gynaecology, who assisted in the delivery said she was happy that the baby and mother are healthy and safe. “To be blessed with a baby on a special day adds to the happiness of the family. We wish the family and the baby a very happy and healthy life.”

A blessing after eight years

Elsewhere at NMC Speciality Hospital at Al Ain, baby Mohammed Muhaibullah was born to his Pakistani parents Ayesha Imran Zubair - a homemaker and his goldsmith father - Imran Zubair Liaqat Ali. Baby Mohammed was born through normal delivery 3.9kg at 12.42am. The baby came in their lives after eight years of marriage.

Baby Mohammad
Baby Mohammed Muhaibullah with mom Ayesha Imran Zubai and dad Imran Zubair Liaqat Ali Image Credit: Supplied

Recounting the challenging delivery, Dr Sheeba Binoj, Specialist, Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the hospital, said, “This patient undergoing a high-risk pregnancy came to the hospital on December 30, even though the expected date of delivery was January, 3, 2022. It was a vacuum assisted delivery at 00.42am and the healthy baby weighing 3.9 kg was born. Now, the mom who experienced motherhood nearly eight years of her marriage is very happy."

Yet another COVID-19 warrior

At NMC Specialty Hospital, Al Ain, baby girl Sienna Catherine Jis came into the lives of Neethu Augustine – another COVID-19 warrior and her husband Jis Thomas. This is the first child to the Indian couple. She was also delivered with the help of Dr Binoj through a Casearean section, weighing 2.65 kg at 6 am.

Baby Seinna
Baby Seinna Image Credit: Supplied

Every baby a miracle

Commenting on the baby births, which always seems such a miracle Michael Davis, CEO of NMC Healthcare, said: “It is such an enduring and adorable symbol for the New Year with the birth of newborn babies in our hospitals across the UAE. The beginning of each year holds this symbolic promise of hope and new opportunities. My best wishes to families of the newborn and wish them a safe and a rewarding life ahead.”

Why birth of New Year babies is significant

The imporatance of the birth of babies marking the onset of a New Year has been a practice in existence since circa 600 BC and has its roots in ancient Greece. Every year, the Greeks celebrated Dionysus, the god of fertility, and this celebration would include parading a baby through the streets in a basket, which represented Dionysus’s birth. A baby was also a symbol in Egypt to represent the birth of a new year and the passing of an old one. Since the 14th century, Germans celebrated the Baby New Year and, with their immigration to North America, the tradition continued to spread. In the current times, every baby that is born in the first few hours of a New Year, is considered a special blessing.