Family Matters

Baby Boom? Moms Eager to Deliver on 11/11/11, the Coolest of Due Dates

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Expectant mom Julie Madayag first learned of her daughter’s auspicious potential birth date from an online due-date calculator: 11/11/11, the computer predicted.

“I thought it was a very cool due date,” says Madayag, 30, a recruiting manager who lives in Seattle. “When I go in for an ultrasound, even the technician gets excited about it.”

The doctors do too: early on in a pregnancy, due dates can fluctuate slightly in accordance with sonograms that measure the size of the embryo. When that happened to Madayag, her physician manually moved the date back.

With more than 4 million babies born in the U.S. each year, it stands to reason that at least several thousand of them will enter the world on Friday, Nov. 11, and claim their super-cool birthdate. The day’s fertility karma has been generating some buzz on Twitter. On Thursday, Cryogenic Laboratory, a Minnesota sperm bank, predicted: “Tomorrow is 11/11/11. There should be a lot of successful procedures tomorrow…such a lucky day :)”

Carly Schwartz wrote: “Tomorrow is the due date: 11.11.11 come on baby Schwartz! We want to meet you already!” tweeted: “Moms in Korea are scheduling c-sections to ensure 11/11 b-days. (Wow.)”

Madayag didn’t try to engineer her daughter’s due date, although other moms-to-be undoubtedly did. Last February, around Valentine’s Day, media outlets advised amorous couples to ditch the birth control on Feb. 18. Assuming a perfect 28-day menstrual cycle, conception on that day could have yielded a due date of Nov. 11. (Conception doesn’t always happen on the same day as intercourse, however; the egg lives for 24 hours and sperm can remain viable for up to five, leaving open a significant window of time.)

What’s more, due dates are just estimations. “Most times, it’s a day or two on either side of the due date,” Dr. Joe Hill, an obstetrician/gynecologist and fertility expert with the New England Fertility Centers in Portsmouth, N.H., told AOL News back in February. “Only the baby knows for sure.”

In the end, the day may shape up to be much ado over nothing. Reports that days with repeating “1s” translate to financial windfall aren’t to be taken seriously, according to LiveScience, which advises against rushing out to buy stocks or play the lottery. If you’re into touchy-feely kinds of things, however, 11/11/11 is a day “when many in the New Age movement plan celebrations to receive emerging energies in preparation for a transformation of consciousness on Dec. 21, 2012,” according to University of Kansas anthropologist John Hoopes.

Meanwhile, it’s worth noting that as long as your baby has reached 39 weeks, it can’t hurt to try to jumpstart labor. In fact, a recent study in the journal Birth found that half of all full-term pregnant women try to induce labor by using “folklore” — things like walking, having sex, doing nipple stimulation or eating spicy food.

Madayag, who was still with child as of Thursday evening, is all for it. “I am still hoping that she comes tomorrow!” she wrote in an email. “Thai food is on the menu tonight.”

Bonnie Rochman is a reporter at TIME. Find her on Twitter at @brochman. You can also continue the discussion on TIME‘s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.