Viral Photo of Newborn Pulling Doctor’s Mask Off Is 2020 in a Nutshell

A doctor in Dubai shared a photo of a newborn tugging on his PPE mask went viral (sorry) as the image seems to capture how so much of us are feeling right now amid the pandemic. We don’t know how a baby who had only been in the world for a matter of seconds understood the predicament we’re in, but it certainly was already over it. If the coronavirus has taught us one thing, it’s that doctors and nurses and hospital staff will stop at nothing to try and heal this world. This is why the caption Dr Samer Cheaib wrote felt so appropriate: “We all want signs [that we] are going to take off the mask soon.”

As of the time of writing, over 120,000 people had liked the viral image on social media, and hundreds more left comments about how the image felt so meaningful and timely.

Doctor Samer Cheaib shared the most relatable image of a newborn tugging at his PPE mask, capturing the attention of thousands.

“I never thought I would get such an overwhelming response to the picture,” the doctor explained to Gulf News.

The doctor explained that the baby in the picture was one half of a pair of twins. He couldn’t share the baby’s name for privacy reasons, but did explain that it was a natural birth and it was the “second in a pair of twins I delivered a couple of weeks ago.”

The doctor explained to the outlet that the photo was captured in a perfect moment by the baby boy’s father who was so excited that he reached for his camera to snap a photo. Just as he did, the doctor posed for the picture and the baby leaned over and yanked on his mask.

“We were surprised by the baby’s action and we started laughing,” he told CafeMom. “I asked the father to take the picture. He was sitting next to the mom’s head.”

Cheaib felt compelled to share the photo on social media because it felt so timely.

He explained to Gulf News that the photo was a visual metaphor or symbol of everyone’s desire to be past COVID-19 and wearing a mask.

“It was such a spontaneous response from the baby,” he said. “People warmed up to it because it is portending the end of COVID-19. Everyone wants to take off the mask soon and who knows we will be able to soon.”

To be clear, we’re not out of the woods yet when it comes to this deadly virus. Cases are on the rise around the world and sharply so here in the United States. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t find joy in the image.

“There was some positivity in the picture, and I think it brings a smile to the face of people who see it,” he told Gulf News. “The positivity and smile will work to boost people’s immunity and help towards combating this pandemic. The little newborn wanted a world without masks and very soon we might have this.”

People online have received the image well and many have commented that image feels like the perfect capsule of 2020.

“Best photo of 2020,” one person wrote.

“This kid will change the world,” another added.

“What a beautiful and meaningful picture,” one comment reads.

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The doctor explained that he’s in it for the smiles.

He told CafeMom that he want to spread positivity and “take out fear from the process of baby delivery.”

He repeated to the outlet that he feels the baby pulling at his mask is a hopeful sign of a future when we can “take off the mask that we all suffered from.”

“Social media needs positive vibes,” he continued, “and should make people smile.”

The adorable photo certainly made us smile. Keep up the great work, Dr Cheaib we need all the positive vibes we can get!


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