By Connor Adams Sheets
Selina Wong, the first child of Ting Li and Richard Wong, was also the first baby born in Queens in 2011.
Born just one minute after midnight Jan. 1, the child brought a healthy dose of holiday cheer to the Fresh Meadows couple’s lives.
“I feel very ecstatic, this was a special moment already and to be one of the first babies in 2011 made it that much more special. So very ecstatic,” the proud father said Monday afternoon, shortly after the family returned home from New York Hospital Queens in Flushing. “It was very surreal. The TV was on, we turned it on and watched the ball drop in Times Square, that was happening at the same time. My head was turned to her and the TV and back and also at the clock wondering if we would make it before the New Year’s. Everyone was very excited. After the ball dropped, a lot of people came in wanting to see the first baby born in 2011.”
The first known baby born to a Queens family this year was Kacper Nieczyslaw Kozlowski, whose Maspeth mother, Marta Kozlowski, gave birth to him at Beth Israel Hospital in Manhattan exactly 57 seconds after the ball dropped on New Year’s Eve.
The boy, who weighed 7 pounds 14 ounces, is Kozlowski and her husband Jacek’s first child.
Back across the East River, baby Selina weighed in at 7 pounds, 12 ounces when she was born, and her arrival as the hospital’s first baby of the new year earned her a $1,000 savings bond, a congratulatory basket of flowers and a stash of baby goods. Li’s due date was Jan. 4, but the baby’s early appearance made her a star at NYHQ.
“It’s exciting and unbelievable,” Ting Li, who is originally from South China, said after giving birth. “I never thought I would have one of the first babies of the new year.”
The family is getting all the assistance they can get to help care for the newborn, enlisting Li’s parents to shoulder some of the responsibility and stay with them through the baby’s first days.
“We just hopefully will have mutual cooperation between my wife and I to take care of the baby, and the in-laws are here also to assist us,” Richard Wong said. “And also I have to balance my life between me and my baby and hopefully I can do it.”
Reach reporter Connor Adams Sheets by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-260-4538.