A new year allows people to make changes in their lives as they start with a fresh slate. For a Medford family, the year began with the arrival of its bundle of joy, Mirabel.
It was New Year’s Eve, three days after Mirabel’s expected delivery date, and Jessica and Jeremiah Pinto were ready to have a calm New Year’s celebration. Then, after nightfall, Jessica began having contractions.
“We weren’t expecting it as she was supposed to be due on the 28,” Jessica said. “We got to the hospital on Tuesday night and we weren’t sure if she’d arrive on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day.”
The couple took the nighttime trip to Virtua Voorhees Hospital off Route 73 and made themselves comfortable in the maternity unit, anxiously awaiting their daughter’s arrival.
Mirabel appeared shortly after the stroke of midnight Jan. 1, the start of the new decade. The Pintos received warm congratulations from their obstetrician, nurses and hospital employees because Mirabel was the first birth for the Voorhees hospital in 2020.
“Everyone kept stopping by and they were giving us the good news and our doctors were so excited and really nice to us,” Jeremiah Pinto recalled.
Of the approximately 8,600 babies Virtua Health delivers each year at its network of hospitals, it is common to have someone born on New Year’s Day, and, in rare instances, Leap Day, according to spokesperson Kathy McLaughlin.
From her past experiences at another hospital, McLaughlin can say it’s a big deal to have a child born on Jan. 1, 2020, but any birth is important as families welcome their newest additions.
The Pintos were blessed with gifts from the Voorhees hospital that included a diaper cake; a giant, pink stuffed animal; chocolates; and a handmade onesie that says New Year’s Baby on the front and Virtua 2020 on the back.
Her parents said Mirabel — Mira for short — is a healthy newborn who slept on the ride home from the hospital Jan. 3. Her 6-year-old and 3-year-old sisters were excited to meet their newest sibling.
“Honestly, it’s spending time with her as a family and getting her siblings acclimated to one another and hanging out and being silly,” Jeremiah said cheerfully.
As the family accepts congratulations from family members, friends and the press, the Pintos said they are simply happy to welcome another healthy daughter into the world.
With Mirabel having a holiday birthday, Jessica said they’ll likely celebrate the milestone in some fashion either on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day each year.
For now, they’re excited to have a new baby and are ready to “get used to the new normal” of having a five-person family spending more time with one another.