A Tauranga couple who travelled to Auckland for Chinese New Year celebrations will be leaving with one of the luckiest babies to be born in the city this year.
Jessica Lee Wishart, the first child for parents Ian and Ping, was born on Monday, January 23 around 4.57am - the first day of the Chinese New Year and, most importantly, the first day in the Year of the Dragon.
The Year of the Dragon is one of the most important years in the Chinese Zodiac, with many Chinese women scrambling to deliver "dragon babies" because the year symbolises luck and vitality - and success is said to be painted in the baby's future.
Despite knowing Jessica would be a dragon baby, her parents were still surprised at her arrival at Auckland City Hospital, which was three weeks before her actual due date.
"To be born in the Year of the Dragon is very lucky. A lot of women are trying to fall pregnant so their baby is born this year," said Ian.
"We obviously knew [Jessica] would be born in the Year of the Dragon, but we were hoping for her to be born on her actual due date, which was February 14 - Valentine's Day. But she decided this day is bigger."
The couple - who hope their pint-sized newborn will become an engineer - had cleared travelling to Auckland with their midwife and were hoping Jessica would be delivered in their hometown.
"We had cleared travelling with our midwife, but Ping started feeling sick and having contractions on Sunday," said Ian.
"That's when we came to the hospital. We were hoping we could go back to Tauranga, but they said there's no way we could drive all the way down there."
They are hoping to be discharged from hospital today or tomorrow.
Jessica was one of only two Chinese babies born in Auckland on January 23. The second was born at North Shore Hospital.
- © Fairfax NZ News