It’s always an occasion — even more than most — when Lisa Rema gives birth.
Due Christmas Day, Rema and her husband Anil Sadanandan headed to Etobicoke General Hospital after she went into labour around 3 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
Ten hours later, Anika became Etobicoke’s first baby of 2013.
“(Lisa) thought she could make it 12:01, but she couldn’t,” a still-exuberant Anil said Wednesday, laughing. “Everyone was excited about this case. Everyone came in the room at midnight. At 1:07 a.m., she came out.”
Born a quiet seven pounds, two ounces, little Anika’s name means kindness in Malayalam. Her parents immigrated to Canada from India 12 years ago.
The family headed to their Etobicoke home with their latest bundle of joy on Wednesday afternoon. Older sister, Kajal, 6, couldn’t keep her eyes off her baby sister.
Kajal’s name translated means eyelashes. Kajal, too was a holiday baby. She was born on Canada Day.
“People keep asking, ‘what’s the trick behind (having babies on holidays)?’” Sadanandan said. “I tell them, ‘it’s God’s trick.’”
The local couple received a large gift basket of baby items donated by the Hwy. 10 and Mayfield Shoppers Drug Mart and the Metro Punjabi Sports Club.
“We’re all so excited,” Sadanandan said of his second daughter’s birth. “We want to thank everyone at the hospital who were so co-operative and made this happen.”
Anika was one of the first babies born in Toronto on Jan. 1. Wynn Christopher Laforet became Toronto’s first baby of 2013. He was born at exactly 12 a.m. at St. Michael’s Hospital to parents Jane Maggs and Casey Laforet.
Each year, William Osler Health Systems’ hospitals, including Etobicoke General and Brampton Civic, delivers more than 7,500 babies.