A surrogate mother has given birth to a healthy baby boy – but tragically the friend she was carrying the baby for died without ever meeting the newborn.
Jessica Brockie, a mother-of-two herself and the wife of a New Zealand footballer Jeremy Brockie, carried the child for long-time friend Bec Arena because she was suffering from cystic fibrosis and couldn’t have the baby herself.
In a Facebook post announcing the pending birth of their child in July last year, Mrs Arena shared her joy at her friend’s kindness, which she described as ‘selfless’.
Bec Arena (pictured) suffered cystic fibrosis which made her journey to parenthood a difficult one
In July last year, Mrs Arena (pictured) revealed she and her husband, with the help of her friend Jessica Brockie, were expecting a baby
She wrote: ‘We are so fortunate to have Jes and her family helping us along this road – who would have thought all those years ago in primary school that this is where we would be now!
‘Gareth and I can’t even find words to adequately describe how grateful we are to Jes, Jeremy & their kids for going on this journey with us.’
In a heartbreaking turn of events, Mrs Arena died from cystic fibrosis in September. Her son Rixon James Arena was born just four days ago on January 20.
Jessica Brockie (pictured left) carried her baby for her friend Bec who suffered from cystic fibrosis
Following the baby’s birth, the All Whites striker, who recently transferred to Mamelodi Sundowns in South Africa, tweeted how ‘proud’ he was of his wife for giving up her time and her body for their friends.
He also wrote: ‘It’s been such a great journey to be involved in and so glad we could do this side by side.
‘To be able to help another family like this is so rewarding.’
Jeremy Brockie posted a touching tribute to his wife following the birth of her surrogate child
Mrs Brockie also shared a touching tribute to her friend after their new son was born, writing ‘What an amazing journey to be a part of.’
She continued by thanking her friends, Bec and Gareth, ‘for letting our family travel this road with you.’
A GoFundMe page has been started by someone close to the new father to help with costs of raising his baby on his own.
Mrs Brockie also revealed how honoured she felt to have been able to help her friends realise their dream of having a baby
‘Bec was never one to talk about her hardships or to ask for help, even though she was battling personal struggles greater than we could ever truly understand,’ a statement reads on the fundraising page.
‘And now, even though he is now facing this huge financial and emotional mountain on his own, Gareth is just the same.’
Funds raised will go towards helping Gareth cover the cost of being a stay-at-home dad.
The Brockie family have two children of their own, Piper and Oskar.