The bride's SURPRISE!
Tell and Sell Stories spoke to the lovely Suzanne who had no idea she was pregnant - even when she was six months down the line and getting MARRIED! She didn't know she was expecting until the baby popped out! We placed her story in Take a Break magazine and Woman's Own.
Here, she tells her story... I gazed unimpressed at the bowl of green salad sitting before me and tried to imagine it was a cheeseburger and chips.
‘You really don’t need to lose any weight,’ my fiancé Chris said.
‘I do,’ I replied. ‘There’s no way I’m being a fat bride.’
Chris, then 39, had popped the question a few months earlier at a surprise 30th party he’d organised for me... (continued below)
We’d been together for six years and I’d been dying for him to propose. I had a son, Joshua, then nine, from a previous relationship, and Chris and I had two daughters, Emelye, two, and Poppy, 11 months.
I was delighted they would be able to celebrate with us as our pageboy and flower girls.
After I’d finished picking at my healthy dinner I gulped back a glass of fizzy water to fill me up.
‘Right, time for the cross trainer,’ I said.
I climbed onto my birthday present from Chris and started working out. As I did, I envisaged myself as a size 12. Over the years my weight had crept up to 13 stone and I wore a size 16.
‘Must… lose… weight,’ I said, panting.
I didn’t completely deprive myself though.
I was partial to a glass of white wine and liked to smoke socially, so I continued to meet my mum Kathy or brother Nigel a couple of times a week at the pub. Then Chris and I would have a few drinks at the weekend to unwind.
I remained committed to my diet though and in between munching on lettuce, I started on my to-do list for the wedding.
I chose a hotel venue in the Lake District, invited around 60 of our closest family and friends, and started making the girls’ blue, frilly flower girl dresses by hand.
Then it was time to choose my dress.
I scoured a few shops but couldn’t find one that was right so I looked online. I fell in love with a frilly princess-style gown with a sparkly beaded bodice and ordered it there and then.
I’ve found my dress,’ I told Chris. ‘I need to lose about a stone.’
He rolled his eyes.
‘Whatever makes you happy love,’ he said.
I was a bride on a mission.
I bought food suppressant tablets online and began taking them religiously, every day. Then I ramped up the exercise a notch and started using the kids as weights.
‘Yippee!’ Emelye cried as I lifted her above my head.
‘See, the kids benefit too,’ I laughed.
It wasn’t long before I was admiring my new waist in the mirror.
Finally, my efforts were paying off.
Six months before our big day, I got my dress taken in to fit my new figure. It had a lace-up back so I knew that if I lost a little more, I could just pull it tighter.
Every morning without fail, I stepped on the bathroom scales. With every pound I lost, the more determined I became.
Then came the morning of our wedding day.
I woke up at the hotel and beamed as I unpacked my dress.
My maid of honour Claire helped me slip into it, but as we pulled it over my bust, it slipped right back down again.
I gasped and said: ‘I can’t believe it, it’s massive.’
‘You’ve lost too much weight,’ Claire said.
It was two dress sizes too big and the bodice gaped at the sides.
Even laced up tightly it was still baggy.
‘I’ll take it to the local seamstress,’ my hair stylist said.
But soon she was back looking defeated.
‘They’re closed,’ she said.
‘I’ll have to wear it like it is,’ I said.
We did our best to pin it in.
It didn’t fit snugly like I’d wanted, but I was glad I’d exceeded my weight loss target – if a little too much.
Later, I walked down the aisle towards Chris.
After years of waiting for my dream wedding, the pressure was immense and I was a quiet as a mouse.
I exchanged vows with Chris nervously and only began to relax after a couple of glasses of prosecco.
As I mingled with our guests, I was thankful to the waiters for keeping my glass topped up. But no matter how much I drank, I just didn’t seem to get drunk.
Chris and I shared our first dance to Love Me Like You Do by Ellie Goulding before our guests joined us for a boogie.
I started on the vodka and the drinks continued to flow all night.
‘I love you Mrs Holdsworth,’ Chris said.
I kissed him and said: ‘I love you too Mr Holdsworth.’
Despite the minor hiccup that morning, the day was perfect.
Just over three months later, life had returned to normal. Except now I was a wife, as well as a busy mum-of-three.
‘Can we play horses?’ Joshua said.
‘Come on then,’ I said.
I got on all fours and he hopped on my back. Then Emelye and Poppy joined him and I carted all three children around the sitting room.
‘Cor you’re a heavy lot,’ I said.
Next day, I dropped the kids off at school and nursey and when I got home I came over all queasy.
I doubled over in pain and grabbed my stomach.
‘I don’t feel good,’ I told Chris.
I had a bath but it didn’t help.
Then I rushed back to the toilet to be sick.
‘Something’s wrong,’ I groaned.
‘I’ll call an ambulance,’ Chris said.
After waiting for over an hour, four paramedics arrived. They had no idea what was wrong with me.
I lay on my bed while one gently prodded my stomach.
‘It might be that your appendix has burst,’ he said.
He gave me a couple of painkillers but they didn’t even touch the sides. Instead the pain continued until…
I let out an almighty scream and all I could do was point down at the trousers I was still wearing.
‘What is it? Do you need the loo?’ the paramedic asked.
He helped me whip off my trousers.
When I looked up, my mouth flapped open in shock.
The paramedic was now holding a baby.
It took me a second to realise it was mine.
‘Oh my… Is it OK?’ I said.
He nodded looking stunned, as he unwrapped the umbilical cord from around her neck.
At that moment, another of the paramedics who had briefly left the room returned.
‘Where the hell did that come from?’ he yelled.
I turned to Chris whose face had gone white.
‘Looks like we’ve got an early Christmas present,’ he mumbled.
‘Is it a boy or girl?’ I asked.
‘A girl,’ the paramedic said.
How had I not known I was pregnant?
In the previous months, instead of gaining weight and a bump like most expectant women, I’d lost two stone.
I’d regularly drank alcohol and smoked, and had exercised like a maniac.
I worked out I must have been almost six months pregnant on our wedding day – a day that had been filled with booze.
‘We better get you to hospital,’ the paramedic said.
There, me and the baby were checked over and amazingly, our little girl was perfectly healthy.
She weighed 5lbs 8oz.
‘How was that in here?’ I asked, pointing to my flat stomach.
Chris shook his head in disbelief.
He wasn’t the only one shell-shocked.
I kept going over the last nine months in my head.
I’d still had my period. It had been a little erratic but then it always had been.
Just last night I’d been up a ladder painting the walls, I’d scrubbed the stairs within an inch of their life and cleaned the whole kitchen.
I hadn’t felt sick, tired or hungry, just wired.
I stayed in hospital overnight before returning to our home in Wetherby, West Yorkshire.
The kids took meeting their new little sister in their stride. Joshua, now 10, Emelye, four, and Poppy, two, weren’t fazed one bit.
But it wasn’t so easy explaining to others.
I sent my friend a photo of my daughter.
Look what I bought on Amazon, I joked.
Is that a reborn doll? she replied.
When I told her it was the baby I’d just given birth to she was around mine in a flash to see for herself.
Chris, now 41, and I had given all of our old baby bits away but luckily everyone rallied round and helped us buy the essentials.
We named our baby Leora and she’s now seven months old.
I thought the run-up to getting married was stressful. Little did I know that things were about to get even crazier!
Life has been a complete whirlwind but I’m so in love with our little surprise. She’s the best wedding gift a bride could ask for.