With only an hour and a half advance warning that they were about to become parents for the third time, Sharon and Dutch Harnitz compressed nine months of prenatal anxiety into 90 minutes of quick adjustment.
Cory Andre Harnitz was born at 1:32 a.m. Sunday, shortly after Sharon Harnitz awoke feeling discomfort from what she thought was a bladder infection.
“I woke up and the bed was wet. I felt pressure and went into the bathroom, and that’s when I saw the baby’s foot in the mirror,” she said while cuddling her new baby at Immanuel-St. Joseph’s Hospital.
She called her husband, who was at work, and broke the news. “He was shocked,” she said.
He rushed home and drove her to the hospital where the boy was born by Caesarean section a short time later.
Breech Position Delivery
Surgical delivery was used because the baby was in a breech position.
Pediatrician Donald Swenson said Cory, who weighed 4 pounds, 9 ounces at birth, was four or five weeks shy of being full-term.
“It’s quite common for someone not to know (they’re pregnant) for four, five or six months but this is very rare,” he added.
An internist Sharon Harnitz saw recently for a urinary tract infection did not discover the pregnancy, probably because a full examination was not needed, Swenson said.
Sharon Harnitz, who is overweight, said the pregnancy went undetected because after she had had gall bladder surgery about 1 1/2 years ago, her menses became very light for a while, then stopped.
“I thought I was going through an early menopause,” said the 41-year-old mother.
The couple’s older children, Andre, 20, and Kelly, 17, were surprised, but excited, she said.