BELOIT—Henry Danielson will have quite a story to tell someday.
Henry was born smack dab in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic that has hospital policies changing on a daily basis.
Henry was born on March 27 to parents Emily Cassens Danielson and Travis Danielson at Beloit Memorial Hospital.
Emily said while her first childbirth experience was unique, she wouldn’t have changed anything.
“I’ve just got to say that the people at Beloit Memorial were just outstanding,” Cassens said. “Even though none of the grandparents were able to come and see the baby in the hospital, I feel like I was fortunate to have him when I did.”
Fortunate for a few reasons—the first of which is the uncertainty of future policy changes.
“Things for me just started changing at the end of my pregnancy,” Danielson said. “My husband wasn’t able to see my final ultrasound, and they did induce me a little earlier than I thought they would. But I still made it to 38 weeks and the baby was healthy, so I have nothing to complain about.”
The current policies at Beloit Memorial Hospital, and Mercy and St. Mary’s hospitals in Janesville state that one visitor is allowed in the maternity room. Like everything else, this policy is subject to change at any moment.
Danielson said there was an additional positive that came with quite a twist to her story.
“My mom was teaching in China right before all this happened,” Danielson said. “She came home for a break in January, and of course by the time she was supposed to go back, everything was canceled. So the upshot was that she got to be home when our son came.”
Danielson said she was a little apprehensive as the date came closer.
“There was just so much uncertainty because the policies kept changing,” Danielson said. “We didn’t know until really late that my husband couldn’t go to the ultrasound, but the people at the hospital were very nice about it. They were apologetic and of course we understand why these things are done.”
Danielson went in to the hospital on March 26 and had the baby on March 27. She took her new son home on March 30.
Danielson said she kept a level head throughout the process.
“I got calls all the time, asking if I was scared or nervous,” Danielson said. “But everything went just as it should have. I tell people all the time that if not for this, my mom wouldn’t have been able to come. We wouldn’t have had all this time after the baby to relax.
“And my friends organized a fishbowl meeting. We all went to a parking lot, and they came around the car to see the baby. Some of the others there had small kids, so they made signs and pictures to welcome the baby. Things like that would have never happened without the virus.”