When Nicolina Newcombe was pregnant, she knew her baby felt a bit on the heavy side, and that the little one certainly knew how to use its legs while still in the womb.
She was often left feeling sore when it kicked, but the baby’s measurements weren’t off the scale compared to Nicolina’s own measurements, so doctors didn’t think anything was out of the ordinary.
When the little tyke popped out weighing a whopping 13lbs 7oz (5.9kg) however, it was fairly obvious why a kick from the baby would leave his mother sore.
The arrival of the heavy baby, named Tobias, shocked not only the mother but staff at Waikato Hospital in New Zealand, as he came out the same weight as a six-month-old.
Nicolina even gave birth to Tobias naturally, without the aid of an epidural, when she was induced at 42 weeks, according to the NZ Herald.
That was a good thing because if we had have known that he was going to be such a big baby they might not have let me do it naturally.
So many people said to me, ‘have you got twins in there?’ But I actually did have a baby the size of two babies.
Given mum Nicolina’s height of 175cm, no one picked up that baby Tobias would weigh so much.
If you look at the chart for birth rate, there’s the 99.6 percentile is the highest you can go and he is heaps more off the chart, he’s way off the chart.
The newborn nappy size is 0 to 5kg and he was born 5.9kg, so no newborn clothes fit him.
As would probably be expected with a baby this size, the birth wasn’t completely plain sailing. Tobias’ shoulder became stuck in Nicolina’s pelvis on his way out, which needed some assistance.
As Nicolina said:
He came out head first and once my midwife realised [his shoulder was stuck] she pressed the emergency button. Heaps of doctors came in and helped pull him out.
Everybody was like ‘wow, what a big baby’ and ‘how big is he’, everyone was really shocked.
I was more worried if he was okay, and he was fine, so I didn’t really care how big he was but I suppose it’s a bit of a thing.
As well as the relief of the baby being well, was the relief that Nicolina knew she wasn’t making things up when she said she was sore during pregnancy.
As she said:
I felt like my stomach was so heavy and the kicks were really sore and I was really, really tired all the time, and I thought to myself that I’m complaining too much.
When he came out and he was 13 pounds I was like ‘see, see, I was allowed to complain, I wasn’t making it up’.
As the average baby weighs around 7-8lbs, the nurses at the hospital dubbed Tobias ‘Hercules’, a fitting nickname for the big guy.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.