Woman gives birth at stadium
SUDDEN ARRIVAL: Agnes Porima with her baby Mathew, who she gave birth to unexpectedly at the Westpactrust stadium in Wellington.
20 April 2002
An extra special delivery at WestpacTrust Stadium on Thursday caused more excitement than a Jonah Lomu try in injury time.
Agnes Porima, 22, of Newlands, gave birth to a baby boy in the bathroom of the corporate lounge she’d been cleaning in preparation for tonight’s rugby league match.
Agnes started work at 6am feeling fine. The drama unfolded about 7.30am when she went to the toilet – and realised she was having her baby.
“I didn’t think it was the baby at first,” Agnes told The Evening Post yesterday from her Wellington Hospital bed. Her doctor had said the baby was due in June.
“I didn’t know what to do when the baby came out. Somehow I just crawled to the door and opened it and yelled out.”
That’s where Agnes’ mother Apii comes in – she was also cleaning the stadium, when she heard Agnes screaming.
“I was crying, as I heard her screaming. There are four floors in the stadium, and I didn’t know what floor she was on. I was running and calling, ‘Agnes, Agnes!’ and she was going ‘Mum, Mum! Help me, please’,” Mrs Porima said.
Eventually Mrs Porima found her daughter lying on the floor in the bathroom, with blood on the floor. It was a shock when she saw the baby – Agnes had not yet told her mother about her pregnancy.
“The baby started crying, like he knew someone was there. I just ran in and grabbed him and wrapped him in my T-shirt to keep him warm.
“I carried the baby down and they rang for an ambulance,” Mrs Porima said.
Agnes credits her mother with saving her life and her baby’s.
“There were only three people in the stadium at the time. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be here now.”
Both mother and baby are doing well. Agnes and her partner of four years, Johnny Mariri, are getting used to the sudden onset of parenthood.
Agnes has called her 2.3kg (5lb) son Matthew – but her mother has other ideas: “She wants to call him Matthew West Jonah Stadium Porima,” Agnes said.
Matthew – who the nurses say seemed to be a full-term baby – was born on the west side of the stadium.
While people were already joking that baby Matthew would grow up to be a sports star after his spectacular stadium debut, Agnes was not convinced. “I don’t even like rugby,” she said.
Matthew is Mrs Porima’s first grandchild, and stadium bosses say he’s the first baby to be born there.
And though he’s only two days old, Mrs Porima said she’s sure of one thing about her beautiful grandson: “He’s a survivor.”