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Baby’s birth surprises Duluth runner training for half-marathon race

The baby girl born Monday, June 3, 2013, to John and Trish Staine of Duluth doesn’t have a name yet, but her father says “Miracle” tops his list of ideas. (Photo courtesy of John Staine)

By Mike Creger

DULUTH - John Staine pinched the doctor on Monday.

“It was like a dream,” the new father said of the odyssey he and his wife have experienced in the past two days. “I wanted to make sure it was real.”

Trish Staine is one of those rare cases of a woman who didn’t know she was pregnant until minutes before she gave birth.

Trish remained in the hospital and out of reach by telephone Tuesday, so John told the story. Both Mom and the new baby girl are doing fine despite a delivery five weeks early.

It started Sunday when Trish felt some back stiffness after training for the half marathon on Grandma’s Marathon weekend.

John said Trish’s pain increased throughout the day Monday. John was stuck in Superior for a hospital checkup. He had seen his wife crying in pain earlier in the day and it eventually led to “screaming, crying and yelling out,” he said.

She had run at least nine miles Sunday. They thought maybe it was a pinched nerve, a kidney stone or a burst appendix.

She took some pain relievers. She took baths. She lay down. It got worse.

Finally, two of the couple’s older children were asked to take her in to the hospital. But the pain was too great and an ambulance was called instead.

When John later walked into Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center, doctors said “you have a brand new girl,” John said.

“Whose baby is that?” he recalled saying. “It’s not possible.”

The two have foster children and two biological children, 7 and 11. The Staines run the Genesis Project, a transitional foster care program for young men between ages 17 and 21.

Neither of Trish’s first pregnancies, obviously, compared to the one the couple never knew about.

There was no kicking, no movement, John said. His wife even looked like she’d lost weight while training hard for the half marathon.

“She didn’t gain any weight,” he said. “Her face was even thinner.”

He admitted that he can usually talk a mile a minute, but not this time.

“I just didn’t have anything to say,” John said. “It takes a lot to shock me.”

Wife and baby are expected to be home today. The family will meet to talk about a name, John said. “Miracle,” he said, is topping his list.

The other question? Will Trish finish her goal to run the half marathon?

“We paid for it,” John said of the Grandma’s entry fee. “They’ve already cashed the check.”

If Trish makes it to Scenic Highway 61 starting line in 17 days, consider it just another miracle for the Staine family.

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