Karisma: Our Surprise Baby!

clip_image002At 3 am on the morning of October 31st, my wife Zuzana delivered our second child: Karisma Sarah Elizabeth Sneed. To everyone’s amazement, the baby arrived while we were still at home, before we had the chance to get in the car and go to the hospital! In fact, she arrived even before the paramedics came on the scene, leaving it to myself and Delilah, our birth assistant (called a “doula”) to catch the baby. When Zuzana’s water broke and her contractions were coming about every 3 minutes, I asked her to get in the car and leave. But, recalling the length or her first labor, she refused, and the doula was backing her up.

Outnumbered two to one, I acquiesced. Finally, when the contractions were growing more intense and lasting over two minutes, I issued an ultimatum: we are leaving NOW! She was in the bath tub, so I opened the drain plug to let the water out. As we were lifting her out of the tub (she could not get up on her own strength), she exclaimed, “Baby!” Sure enough, the baby’s head was starting to come out. I immediately called 911. Then as I looked down, I saw the baby’s whole head pop out. Before I knew it, the doula caught the baby and we both lifted her up, placing it on Zuzana so she could bond and start breast feeding.

The 911 dispatcher had me tie off the umbilical cord with a shoe string. By the time the paramedics arrived, Zuzana was sitting with the baby in her arms on a small ledge inside our bath tub (it’s a large garden style type). The baby was crying and Zuzana was doing fine, relieved that the whole thing was pretty much over. The paramedics allowed me to cut the umbilical cord with a scalpel. Then they loaded her on a gurney and into the ambulance. After a about a 20 minute ride (averaging 70 mph), we arrived at the hospital, Medical Center of McKinney (Texas), where our doctor was waiting for us. Even with all the commotion, I managed to click off a few photos using my cell phone.






Although unexpected, the experience was not as traumatic as I thought it would have been. I’m just grateful we did not have to deliver the baby in the car! All in all, a home birth was a refreshing experience. However, I would recommend at least a midwife. That said, our OB-GYN, Dr. Jennifer Allen, did a great job with the latter parts of the delivery and repairing the minor injuries Zuzana sustained as a result of the fast delivery. After a day of recovery at the hospital, Zuzana, Kerrigan and I are looking forward to integrating Karisma into our expanding family.

About Tony Sneed

Sr. Software Solutions Architect, Hilti Global Application Software
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11 Responses to Karisma: Our Surprise Baby!

  1. Delilah Ray says:

    Wonderful story- and it was a wonderful birth! Definitely a “first” for me, ha ha! I highly recommend homebirth… WITH A MIDWIFE… next time!

    Karisma is lovely and Zuzana is a rock star!

    Delilah (the doula)

  2. Andie says:

    Tony, Zuzana, Kerrigan and Karisma,
    We are so happy for all of you! Wow! Karisma will always be able to tell her exciting birth story to impress her friends! We are so thankful that God blessed you all with a safe delivery. We can’t wait to meet Karisma. I am sure she will be as special as Kerrigan!

  3. Genny Sneed, proud Grandma says:

    What an incredibly beautiful story of the birth of my newest graddaughter. Amazing!! IT looks like Zuzana has been preparing well. I am so happy for this beautiful loving family. Congratulations!

    May the Good Lord Bless you, protect you and give you good health & long life. You have so much to be grateful for.

    With all my love,
    GrandMa Genny

  4. Andrea Figueroa says:

    I am so proud of both of you! I am amazed that she came so quickly! I am so happy that it all turned out ok and you can always remember how much she is eager to be here and I am sure she will be eager with absolutely everything! Enjoy! And like I said I can’t wait to see all of you again!

  5. Tony says:

    Thanks you, Delilah, for keeping a cool head, for your hard work, and for sharing in a joyous birth experience — one for the record!

  6. Congratulations!! on the birth of Karisma. What an amazing story. Thank God Zuzana, Karisma and you are well. I bet she’s going to do great things in life. If she was so impatient to enter the world, God must have great plans for her and she couldn’t wait to get started.

    Lots of happiness, health and a joy to your whole family and may every news out of the Sneed family be as good.

    All the best,

  7. Jan says:

    Tony and Zuzana, congrats! And since we are expecting in 6 weeks, this is a little frightening, since this can happen soon here 🙂

    God bless you all and hold on! The fun just began 🙂

  8. Maciej Nejmantowicz says:

    Tony and Zuzana, congrats!

    I wish you and your baby much health and happiness.


  9. Ahojte Tony a Zuzka,
    gratulujem vám k babatku a tesim sa s Vami , Zuzka si uzasna ze si to tak zvladla. ked som si to citala ako prisla Karisma na svet, ved to je ako z filmu. Vazne je to fantasticke, ale asi aj tazke, vsak. ale stalo to za to! MAte dalsieho clena rodiny.Takze budte zdravi, a verim ze sa pridete ukazat aj na Slovensko.! budem rada!

  10. Virginia says:


    congratulations! Zuzana, some people actrually do it by choice, I did for example,since the baby and mother reunite much better without machinery… Also, hospitals present you with a lot of unnecessary choices that become involuntary, for example, C-sections, epidurals, inducement, etc. You had an uncomplicated birth,the true experience with the dad and doula present. I wish you and baby be healthy and happy!!! Tony , best wishes to you as a dad!

  11. martina nemcova says:

    Ahoj Zuzka a rodinka, pozdravujú Vás Nemcovci. Ako sa máte, kedy prídete na Slovensko? Chýbaš mi Zuzka. Ja som teraz u mami a má tu internet, tak Ti píšem. Samko mal už rok. Vaša malá tiež, ale to zbehlo. Mi ?akáme ?alšie bábo v júny. Aleluja. Ako to zvládneme, z Božou pomocou to pôjde. Tak papa Zuzka moja, chýbaš mi tu. Bolo fajn ke? si bola na ?ahanovciach. Pozdravujeme Vás. God bless You. (Boh Vás žehnaj, som dúfam dobre napísala).

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