First baby of 2018 born at St. Luke's in Cedar Rapids only 3 minutes after midnight

Parents didn't expect Camden Austin would be a New Year's baby

Drake Austin holds his son Camden James as he sits with his wife Sarah, all of Marion, Iowa, at the Helen G. Nassif Center for Women’s and Children’s Health at St. Luke’s Hospital in northeast Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on Monday, Jan. 1, 2018. Camden was born at 12:03am on New Year’s Day. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Sarah and Drake Austin of Marion didn’t expect to have the first baby born in 2018.

Sarah’s due date was Jan. 21.

But on Sunday morning, the couple arrived at St. Luke’s Hospital in Cedar Rapids and Sarah was induced for labor.

“We ... figured it would be afternoon or early evening,” Sarah said. “It just took a little while for things to progress. We checked in and one of the nurses made a comment, ‘You could have the New Year’s baby.’ We laughed it off as if we’ll be done and moving past that part by midnight.”

However, Sarah’s labor took a bit longer than she expected, and she didn’t start pushing until about 11:30 p.m. Sunday. Still, Sarah said she didn’t expect to have the new year’s first baby born at the hospital.

“They told me it would be an hour to three hours for a first-time mom,” Sarah said. “I was like, ‘It’s almost midnight. N way it would be the first baby of the year.”

But it went quickly, and Camden James Austin was born at 12:03 a.m. The dark-haired boy weighed in at 7 pounds and 4.6 ounces, measuring 20 inches long.

“I think this guy is our New Year’s resolution,” Drake said. “It’s a definite blessing. We couldn’t be happier.”

His gender also was a surprise for his parents. They had elected not to know.

“It was kind of a double surprise of gender and what year (he) was going to be born in,” Sarah said.

Not only is Camden the hospital’s first baby of 2018, he’s the first grandchild on his father’s side of the family.

“He was timing it the whole time,” Drake laughed. “He’s the only one that had a choice in the matter.”

l Comments: (319) 368-8516;