PORTLAND – The first baby born in Maine in 2012 arrived three weeks early, and with much fanfare.

Alejandro Joseph Mejia came into the world at 3:03 a.m. Sunday at Maine Medical Center, the first child of Alex and Carley Mejia, a pair of physician assistants from Springvale who work at Southern Maine Medical Center in Biddeford.

“His due date was January 21st, so he’s several weeks early,” said Alex Mejia. “My wife had been in the hospital for the past week because of low amniotic fluid.”

Doctors attempted to induce labor Friday and performed an emergency C-section early Sunday. Mejia said his wife and son are both doing well, relatively speaking. As of Sunday night, she was in recovery and the baby was in intensive care.

“I’m exhausted, but things could be worse,” said Mejia, 30. “We’re lucky to be where we are right now.”

The father said after his son was born, nurses began calling hospitals around the state to see if any other 2012 babies had arrived. Not yet, came the replies.

“It was hilarious,” he said. “They called 20 hospitals, at least. There was a lot of commotion.”

The proud parents even watched their newborn son featured on local television news programs Sunday night.

“First day of his life and he’s already on TV,” Mejia said. “It’s been a wild last 48 hours.”

Despite arriving early, the baby tipped the scales at 8 pounds, 2 ounces. As for a possible nickname, the parents were still deliberating. They don’t want to use initials, Mejia said, so no “A.J.”

“So far the leading contenders are ‘Applejack’ or ‘Alex,’” he said. “We want to keep it simple.”

Not far away at Mercy Hospital, the first baby of 2012 was born four days after his due date. Theodore Bendix Martin arrived shortly before noon, at 11:50 a.m., the second child of Erik and Valeska Martin of Durham and brother of 2-year-old Elliott.

“He was so excited to meet his baby brother,” said Valeska Martin. “He just wanted to sit and cuddle with him.”

Theodore — who will probably wind up answering to “Ted” — weighed 8 pounds, 6 ounces and was 20 inches long.

“We’re very, very happy to have him here,” his mother said. “It’s a great start to the new year.”

At Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick, no 2012 babies had been born as of 7 p.m. Sunday.

“We don’t have a New Year’s Day baby yet,” said maternity unit secretary Hannah Lindahl, “but we are hoping for one.”

Staff Writer Glenn Jordan can be contacted at 791-6425 or at:

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