The 8,000-mile birth coach
Yashira Paredes was hoping her husband Edwin would see the birth of their first child. But with Edwin stationed 8,000 miles away at a military base in Iraq it seemed unlikely.
That's when Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center offered it's technical support to make it happen.
The day after Christmas as 20-year-old Yashira was in labor, the media services department at Beth Israel Deaconess, assisted by the non-profit Freedom Calls, established a live connection via the internet to Taqaddum, Iraq. It was the first time the two had seen each other since Edwin, a Marine Lance Corporal, left for duty in August.
For six hours, Edwin talked to his wife as she went through the birthing process.
"Are you ready?," Yashira asked her husband as the contractions got closer.
"The question is, are YOU ready," he joked.
Just before 5a.m. on Dec. 27, Mia Victoria Paredes made her way into the world-- 7 pounds, 11 ounces with a full compliment of black hair.
"I was so happy Edwin was able to be there." said Yashira, who lives in Medford. The two were high school sweethearts in East Boston.
They've been married for two years. "It was just like having him in the room with me."
Media coverage of the story here, here, here and here.