Norwich couple's miracle baby born in NZ
By Helen Baldry
2008: When Norwich couple Adam and Rebecca Griffiths flew to New Zealand for a holiday, their world was turned upside when their tiny baby was born prematurely and 50km from the nearest hospital.
The couple had been living in Norwich for the last three years and were regular members of Norwich Central Baptist Church.
Rebecca was 28 weeks pregnant when they flew to New Zealand, where they both came from, to catch up with family and friends before the birth and stay with Rebecca's parents on a farm in Oxford.
Rebecca takes up the story: "Early one morning I woke with pains in my lower abdomen. I thought it was just my body getting ready for labour and I went back to sleep.
"Minutes later I felt a sharp pain in my abdomen and said to Adam, 'we need to do something about this pain, it's really bad!' In a matter of seconds my waters broke and then we knew this was the real deal.
"Mum quickly phoned the emergency services but with the sound of Adam and mum saying, 'don't push, don't push' and me saying, 'I can't stop' a small head crowned.
Minutes from when my waters broke Adam delivered his first child with my mum as his adviser and nurse. Immediately our wee 2lb baby of 29 weeks was placed on my stomach and covered in towels. We heard a small reassuring squawk and felt a strong heartbeat but the adventure was not nearly over.
"The nearest hospital was 50 km away and when a nurse arrived, our boy was blue, limp and not breathing. I cried out to God, 'Lord, let your will be done but please let him live'.”
“After a few miraculous breaths on an oxygen mask he started breathing on his own. Amidst all of this, emotions of fear, panic and confusion would be expected but all that I felt was a sense of peace and serenity. I knew that my God and creator had all things in his hands including my tiny first-born son. I also knew I had the support of numerous family members and friends that had been contacted and were praying for our little boy.
"That day we knew that right before our very eyes we had witnessed the miracle of God breathing life into our little boy. Harrison is a blessing from God that we will treasure for the rest of our lives.
Adam said: "Harrison was in hospital for eight weeks, and during that time it seemed like every day we had to face a new challenge and let go of something else in our lives. First it looked like I would lose my job, then there was the possibility of having to sell our house, then the possibility of not coming back to the UK at all. Each time something like this came up we struggled with it for a day or two then once we realised we had no way out, we let go and gave it to God and just asked Him to look after us, and every time - without fail – we saw his provision.
"My employer suddenly had a change of heart and decided to keep my job open for me, I was offered part-time work in NZ to help cover mortgage payments and then our travel insurance agreed to support us and escort us home."
Pictured above is Rebecca Griffiths with baby Harrison in the New Zealand hospital.