Dr. Gladys Duruyani and Dr. Ishmael Hannaniya were married for 20 years and just like any other couple, they tried to have children.
However, unlike others, it took them several years to conceive and despite the challenge with conception and their expectations, all the pregnancies unfortunately ended in miscarriages.
This was a very grievous deal for them because the babies would grow to about five or six months in the womb and then a miscarriage would occur and some of these miscarriages were for multiple babies.
The enlightened couple utilized their globe-trotting exposure to seek medical solution overseas, all to no avail. Eventually as time progressed, Duruyani became ill and was diagnosed severally with various kinds of ailments.
She developed a type of cough the doctors could not understand and on the film some dark spots were seen in her chest region and lungs. Being devoted Christians, they sought medical solution to all the challenges yet committed them all to the Lord as they expected some miracle.
Eventually the Lord took this strange ailment away from her. Their challenges were numerous, and one day, while they dined at a Chinese restaurant in Abuja, Duruyani began to bleed.
She knew what was happening. Her husband, who is a microbiologist, a specialist neuro-physician, also rushed her to three different hospitals. Unfortunately, in each hospital, the senior doctors had all gone home.
After the third stop, he rushed her to the National Teaching Hospital where he found out again that all the senior doctors had also closed for the day.
At this point of desperation, he had to take the bull by the horn, choosing to go against the ethics of his profession that advise against a man performing such a major surgery on his spouse. He had a vague idea of what to do, besides there were some junior doctors around.
With the few junior doctors on duty, they quickly set up the theatre and began the surgery to take out the blood clot that was about to snuff life out of his beloved wife until an experienced doctor who came around the hospital for an entirely different reason heard of the situation and ran to take over the surgery already in progression.
On another day, she felt ill and in the cause of seeking a medical solution in South Africa, they were told that the blood result was bad news. The South African doctors gave the verdict; they were shaken and took the challenge once more to the Lord in prayers.
They said, “it was a rare form of blood disease.” The couple were shocked and torn apart for a while but braced up, rejecting the doctor’s report and holding unto the Lord’s report.
They sought medical solution in the UK afterwards and the doctors became puzzled and asked “who said she had a blood disease, a rare form of blood cancer? To the glory of God, the results of the latter test showed there was no trace of the cancer.
Did a miracle take place? They rejoiced and praised the Lord. Soon after this great news, they got a call from the South African doctors stating that there was a mix-up with her tests.
They investigated further and confirmed that she did not have any form of cancer in her system. Having gone through so much and having wailed on the Lord in the secret place of the Lord, they remained sober and thankful for once more sparing her life from the clutch of death.
After a while, they tried to have children again but it was to no avail as the series of miscarriages continued. Eventually they figured that since her womb could not keep the pregnancies, they would consider the option of surrogacy.
Their Harley Street doctor who is one of the first doctors in the world to successfully deliver in-vitro (IVF) babies had been very sympathetic to their cause and after series of the failed IVF had suggested surrogacy to them.
They began the necessary procedures and as embryos could be stored for years, they decided to store the excess embryos while they sought for a surrogate mother to carry their child.
Unfortunately, the surrogacy laws in Britain were so strict that it would have been impossible to find a mother to carry the child. The doctor who was natively Greek suggested that they find a surrogate in Greece.
They quickly embraced the idea but it was soon forgotten because there was a serious problem with the transportation of the embryos out of the region. When that failed, they tried to transport the embryos to Nigeria but the results were the same as that of Greece. It seemed like they would never be able to have their own children so they opted for adoption.
They adopted a little boy now six years old and they later adopted a girl who is now aged four. Duruyani’s body had gone through so much strain over these years and age was not on her side as she was classified as High Risk Pregnancy (if she took in).
On two occasions she had been diagnosed with a strange form of cancer, and later lymphoma, she had suffered a hemorrhage, suffered from a strange cough which left dark patches on her lungs, she had suffered emotional, physical and psychological trauma at the travails she had gone through amongst other health challenges too numerous to mention. She had also been on total bed rest all through these series of pregnancies that resulted in miscarriages.
Yet from all these, the Good Lord delivered her from the cold hands of death. Her husband, Hannaniya, who is a rare Igbira man from Kogi State and a distinguished gentleman remained a most loving husband to her, an Igbomina from Kwara State and kept all their travails away from family and friends.
THEY loved and doted on their two adopted children and once more wondered if it was necessary to have more children having gone through so much agony in their quest for their own biological children.
The Lord understood the desires of their heart and decided to seal their faith with a remarkable gift to them in the year 2014. They got a call from their doctor in Harley Street that the Law had lifted the storage limit of the human eggs/embryo which negated the earlier law of five years. Perhaps because they were silently thinking once more of their unborn children, they became expectant as a result of the serendipity they experienced.
Once more at this point in time, her embryos were still available and having tried all to no avail, including the suggestion of surrogacy that could not hold for statutory reasons, their deciding to try once more was not out of place.
This time they asked for the frozen embryos to be sent to Nigeria and this became the appointed time for them, as they were able to transport these embryos and implant them in Lagos, Nigeria.
Twenty-nine weeks after the implantation of the embryo, Dr. Hannaniya, while at work, got a call from the surgeon that his twin baby girls had been delivered weighing 0.9kg and 1kg respectively. He could not believe his ears and questioned the time and date of delivery to which the surgeon responded that it was either they were saved at that point in time or they were lost like all the others gone.
Dr. Hannaniya, knowing what everybody in this country and beyond knew which was that the babies had a slim chance of survival in a country like Nigeria, did not get excited. He did not worry either but chose as usual to leave this one more challenge to God.
For the first time their babies had been delivered alive so it was clear that the Lord had given them the miracle of an identical twin birth but with the incessant power outages and the inadequate medical care especially for neonates in the incubators, what would be the fate of these little ones? As usual and with wisdom, he chose to keep the news away from family and friends for he did not want to get excited over his preterm babies. They willingly submitted the case to the Lord and waited for time to celebrate if it was the will of God for them.
As God gave his approval, both babies survived and were christened Grace and Esther on Sunday, 22nd March 2015 at the time of their expected date of delivery.
The other two children who had been adopted were also christened on the same day aged six and four. There was a lovely celebration of the two healthy babies and their older adopted siblings afterwards at the beautiful event organized by the family in the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja. Their phenomenal testimony was shared by the husband himself and all those present were amazed as Dr. Hannaniya shared this incredible testimony of over 90 minutes while their guests were entertained with food and drinks.
Their parents, siblings, relations, friends, colleagues and well-wishers were speechless and moved to tears of joy for the Grace of God on his beloved children, Duruyani and Hannaniya, as they finally found complete joy in their now family of six.
There were great lessons to learn from the power of prayers and the power in sealed lips for they did not give room to any interference or sympathy from family and friends.
They had toured the world in search of children of their own, they had spent money over the years, the Lord continued to provide for them and eventually when they least expected it, the Lord showed them that something good could still come out of their own country, Nigeria, and this was the serendipity of our Lord, the perfection of science, their dogged hope and above all, the abundant blessings of the Great God they serve.