Sian Stafford and John Sellors recently welcomed a baby boy named Cobie, born 10 weeks early at King’s Mill Hospital in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, England.
Little Cobie weighed just 3 lbs. and 9 oz. when he arrived on Aug. 3, and the premature infant was placed on a CPAP breathing machine, South West News Service (SWNS) reported on Monday.
With a little help from nurses in the neonatal intensive care unit, Sellors staged a precious proposal when Cobie was taken off the respiratory support.
“I’m not usually the romantic type, but I really wanted to do something to lift Sian’s spirits and she had been dropping hints for a while about wanting to get married,” the dad explained. “The nurses were great and really helped make it a special proposal to remember.”
As Sellors, 29, took Stafford, 26, for a coffee, the nurses quietly placed a diamond ring and a note reading “Mommy will you marry my daddy?” next to the baby.
After returning to see their newborn, the mom said she was totally shocked by the big surprise on Aug. 5.
“When we got back on to the unit, the nurses told me that Cobie had been taken off his CPAP breathing machine and so I needed to go and look, as I would be able to see his face more,” Stafford said. “I was concentrating so much on Cobie that I didn’t even notice the note and the ring at first!”
“But then John said, ‘look, I think Cobie wants to know something!’ Then I read the note and it was such a surreal but happy moment.”
The couple has been together for eight years, and also share a 4-year-old daughter named Ruby. The parents say the coronavirus pandemic has presented a unique set of challenges to welcoming a new baby, while also caring for another young child.
“It’s been really difficult not being able to let Ruby meet him,” Sellors said. “She can’t wait to give him a cuddle and say hello to her new baby brother.”
“It’s really difficult at the moment, as I feel that I’m having to split myself in two to see my daughter, Ruby, whilst also seeing Cobie on the unit, as she can’t come in to see him due to the COVID-19,” Stafford agreed. “But it will all be worth it in the end.”
After Cobie arrives safely home in a few weeks, SWNS reports, the couple looks forward to start planning for their wedding.
Lynsey Lord, a deputy sister for the neonatal intensive care unit at King’s Mill Hospital, said it was a joy to help coordinate the surprise proposal.
“It was such a special moment to be part of,” Lord said. “It’s not often we get the chance to be involved in a proposal on the unit and this was certainly a first for me, but it was so lovely to see the family all so happy, especially during what has been such a difficult time for everyone.”