First-time parents Hope and Mark Martin got an early Christmas present this year with the arrival of their first baby.
Hazel May was born at Lakes District Hospital in Queenstown on Christmas Eve.
The new arrival was a day early – Hope Martin says it’s the best present she had ever received, “even better than diamonds”.
“She really is the very best gift imaginable. It puts a shadow on all my other Christmas presents, or anything I have ever received.”
Martin says the reality of parenthood is hard to describe. She didn’t think she would fall in love instantly and says she’s been overwhelmed by how special it feels to be a parent.
“It isn’t something I think you can prepare for. I mean, we knew she was coming but this is just beyond words.”
She started feeling twinges in the early hours of Christmas Eve.
She didn’t wake her husband until nearly 5am – when she gave him a “gentle tap”.
“It was a bit of a nudge,” Mark Martin said. “She said, ‘This is really happening. She’s going to come today’.”
The labour lasted seven hours and Hazel May was born at 6.19pm on Christmas Eve, weighing 3.32kg.
The proud mum is full of praise for her supportive husband.
“He just feels bad as he has seen what I have gone through, but she is worth it.”
The happy parents took their daughter home on Boxing Day – and planned a delayed Christmas celebration.
Otago Daily Times