Happy mum Jayne McCormick proudly cradles her little girl – making up for not being the first person to hold her when she was born.
Baby Emma came into the world on July 13, at 10am.
Weighing in at 7lb 11oz, she was “big for me”, said Jayne (40).
The first-time mum, who is from Lurgan, Co Armagh, has scoliosis — a medical condition which causes a curve in her spine — and had to undergo a Caesarean section birth because doctors told her she wouldn’t be able to deliver naturally.
She was also brought in at 39 weeks, to make sure her baby didn’t grow too big.
But her condition meant she couldn’t be given an epidural, so she was “knocked out” during the birth – which meant she didn’t get to hold her new daughter when she was born.
“The baby came out to Ivan (her husband) as soon as she came out of me,” she said, laughing.
“So he was first — I did the hard work and he held the baby.”
But she admitted she was “still dopey” an hour after she came round from the anaesthetic.
“They (midwives) said, ‘you’ve had a girl’, and I said, ‘I want some sleep’,” she laughed.
So dad got the new arrival all to himself for a while after her safe arrival at the Ulster Hospital maternity unit in Dundonald.
But Jayne has lost no time in catching up with those missed moments with her little girl since they’ve both arrived home.
She described the moment she got to hold her daughter, and share the first family moment with Ivan, as “amazing”.
The couple have been married for three years, and Jayne said they were “looking forward to the new addition” to the family.
And little Emma is everything they hoped for.
“She’s doing fine, very contented,” said Jayne.
Jayne will now take six months of maternity leave from her post as a classroom assistant, while Ivan gets two weeks.
Those first couple of weeks will be a big help for Jayne, who will need time to recover from the necessary Caesarean section.
“I feel very helpless, I can’t drive, I can’t lift,” she said.
“But my mum is coming up to help me while I recover.”