Newshub broadcaster Samantha Hayes says having a baby is "the most beautiful thing that's ever happened" to her – but being able to finally hold him in her arms wasn't without its trials!
Sam, 35, gave birth to her first child Marlow River Blauuw on September 19, and in an exclusive interview with Woman's Day reveals that she developed pre-eclampsia towards the end of her pregnancy – a serious condition marked by high blood pressure that requires close monitoring of both mother and child.
Sam admits the high-risk diagnosis left her feeling tearful and emotional while she finished up work at Newshub as she worried about her unborn baby. "I cried on and off all day – even on air when Mike McRoberts farewelled me."
Watch: Mike McRoberts' adorable farewell to Sam Hayes on her last day before maternity leave. Article continues below.
The journalist's obstetrician made the decision to induce the baby early and Marlow was eventually delivered safely by Caesarean with his father Jeroen "Jay" Blauuw, 36, by her side.
Sam first met Dutch IT consultant Jay while travelling in Brazil five years ago, and reconnected last year. He invited her to go climbing in South America in January, where romance blossomed.
Jay soon relocated to New Zealand, and Sam can't help but giggle about their baby' beginnings in the freezing temperatures of the Andes. "We'll be very surprised if this little one isn't good at altitude," she laughs.
Sam and Jay are now happily nesting with blue-eyed Marlow at home – and their baby boy has certainly been a welcome distraction from the news that MediaWorks TV is to be sold.
Sam has worked her way up the ranks of the company since she was 17 and is fiercely loyal to Three. As unsettling as speculation about the future of the business is while she's on maternity leave, Sam says motherhood has helped put things into perspective.
"Becoming a mum has made me realise there's certainly more to life than work. I've never felt a happiness like it."
For Sam's full exclusive interview and pictures, see this week's Woman's Day.
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