A BABY rushed to a specialist unit moments after he was born has been hailed a Christmas miracle after making a speedy recovery.

Little Caleb Bates was the first baby to arrive on Christmas Day at Colchester Hospital.

But within moments he was whisked away from mum Nicole Bates, 25, to receive treatment after a traumatic 12 hour labour.

He was kept under close observation for three days.

Thanks to the care he received in the hospital’s neonatal unit, he was able to feed and was no longer jaundiced and was finally allowed to go home.

Nicole said: “My contractions started at 2pm on Saturday and I was in and out of the hospital maternity unit.

“My labour was slow to get started and on Christmas Eve they induced me and broke my waters.

“I wasn’t allowed any pain relief and only had gas and air. I hadn’t slept or eaten much in the few days before and I was nil by mouth.

“I was in agony.

“The labour was 12 hours but it all sped up in the last 30 minutes. As it came up to Christmas Day they had to get him out within 15 minutes.

“It was an emergency and lots of people rushed in and they had to take him away.”

Nicole was suffering blood loss and had to be treated by doctors.


It was only four hours later she was finally well enough to visit baby Caleb who was covered in monitors and cables as doctors checked he was OK.

For Nicole, who works at a fast food restaurant, it was a harrowing experience.

“He came off all he wires within days and was feeling better by my side automatically,” she said.

“He is our miracle. He is a strong boy and I feel like he has always been with me.

“Naturally now I am the happiest mum in the world as my baby is back with me.”

Caleb had been due on December 29, but Nicole said she always knew he would be born on Christmas Day.

“I knew there wasn’t any room for him anymore – he was 8lb 5oz and he needed to come out,” she said.

“I’d been Christmas dinner shopping and was looking at all the turkeys and some of them were 7lbs.

“It is amazing and the best Christmas present I could ever ask for.


“It was an exhausting experience but also the most rewarding.”

After spending the festive season in hospital Nicole, her partner Elias and Caleb celebrated their Christmas Day yesterday at home in Sudbury.

By midday on New Year’s Day three babies had been born at Colchester and Clacton hospitals.

Senior midwife Julie Hinchcliffe said: “We had a quiet Christmas Day and only two babies were born. New Year’s Day has proved busier.”