Matthew Wright and his wife Amelia have spoken exclusively to HELLO! about their extraordinary baby joy. After eight years of gruelling IVF, the couple resigned themselves to never becoming parents. Yet with the odds stacked against them, they made one last ditch attempt at pregnancy – and their leap of faith paid off. Now the 53-year-old TV and radio host, who recently quit his long-running show, The Wright Stuff, and the 42-year-old record executive, are looking forward to welcoming a baby girl on Valentine's Day. The couple's seventh and final bid for a baby brought unexpected happiness.
"It was our final roll of the dice," Matthew told HELLO! in September 2018. "We've waited a long time for this moment. Every day we keep pinching ourselves because we can hardly believe it's finally happening." Their last embryo, which had been stored on ice for six years, was small and unlikely to result in a successful pregnancy. As they were getting older and had been trying for years, the couple came close to donating the embryo to medical science. "We didn't know if we could take any more anticipation, disappointment and pain," said the star, who has just started hosting a new weekday afternoon show on talkRADIO. "When it didn't happen, even with IVF, I thought it never would."
Matthew Wright and wife Amelia are expecting their baby daughter on Valentine's Day
However, as they considered the fate of their last embryo, a powerful maternal instinct kicked in for 42-year-old Sony executive Amelia. "I couldn't bring myself to give it up," she explained. "Without expectation, I wanted one last shot. If it didn't work, we'd stop and get on with our lives." It has been an extraordinary decade for the couple, who were first introduced at Dr Miriam Stoppard's 70th birthday garden party in 2007. "Miriam was my real-life fairy godmother for bringing Matthew into my life," smiled Amelia. "I'd seen his show and thought he was hot. When we met, he was a dishevelled version of the crispsuited guy on TV, and we hit it off straight away."
Grinning sheepishly at the memory, Matthew said: "It was a baking hot day and I arrived dripping with sweat. I didn't know many people and felt like a fish out of water - until I found myself standing behind this gorgeous girl in a blue polka dot dress. When I heard her cut glass accent, I was hooked. I knew straight away she was The One. We liked the same music and laughed at each other's jokes. I told her how much I love fishing and that she should join me on a fishing trip all over the world. She did - and caught bigger fish than me!"
In 2009, Matthew suggested that Amelia could stop taking her contraceptive pill. "I'd never made anyone pregnant before, despite trying in a previous relationship," he admitted. "So it seemed unlikely that it would happen this time." However, Amelia fell pregnant immediately, only to suffer a miscarriage at six weeks. What doctors failed to detect was that she had been expecting twins, and one of them was still growing inside her fallopian tube. "I felt sick and had abdominal pain for two months, but thought it must be normal after a miscarriage," she shared. "One day I came home from work and collapsed. I felt an explosion inside of me and thought: 'That's it, I'm dying.'"
Panic-stricken, Matthew called an ambulance and Amelia was rushed to hospital, where she underwent emergency surgery to save her life. "Before the op, I kept passing out," she said, with tears welling in her eyes. "It was terrifying. I saw my life flash before me and I knew that if doctors waited to operate, I wouldn't make it to the morning." Amelia survived, but the couple faced even more emotional highs and heartache ahead. After their intimate wedding a year later on the beautiful Turks and Caicos Islands in the Caribbean, they returned home to discover that a burst water pipe had destroyed their house. "The ceilings had collapsed and wrecked everything, including our unopened wedding presents," said Matthew. "We spent our first year of marriage living in bedsits while £140,000 worth of damage was repaired."
A few months later, Matthew's 16-year-old nephew Max Keevill died in a car crash. "Max was my best man," he revealed. "Our wedding day was the last time we ever saw him." Despite a catalogue of overwhelming sadness and obstacles, the couple consulted fertility expert Geoffrey Trew and embarked on IVF treatment. In 2013, when Matthew headed to the jungle for I'm a Celebrity…, Amelia went through the painful process of another IVF egg collection.
"It was physically and emotionally draining," she recalled. "But watching Matthew endure the Bushtucker Trials gave me the strength to continue with the trials I was facing at home. He left me letters to read when I was missing him, and they were a source of great comfort." Matthew added: "Three weeks was the longest we'd ever been apart. I missed Amelia so much that I used charcoal from the camp fire to write 'I love you' on my increasingly slimline chest."
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After a relentless series of miscarriages, one last embryo remained. A few days after Matthew quit his show The Wright Stuff after 18 years, they discovered it was a case of seventh time lucky: the embryo - a baby girl - had survived. "I'm excited and terrified," laughed Matthew. "I've only ever held two babies in my entire life. Now I can envisage becoming the primary carer when Amelia returns to work." He added: "I've got rid of my office furniture and installed nursery furniture. I've disguised my filing cabinets to look like drawers, and when our baby girl arrives we'll start putting in fluffy things. Maybe we can teach her to answer the phone. The irony is that I gave up my show because I wanted my life back. Now I'll be getting up early and won't have a life at all - but it's all good."
"He'll be a doting daddy," remarked Amelia. "When she's older, he can teach her to fish and she'll be the coolest girl in the world. On her scans she looks like a mini-Matthew. She's an amazing disco dancer, too. I talk to her every day and can't wait to meet her. IVF is a difficult and sometimes cruel process. After each round I'd ask myself: 'Can we go through this again?' Luckily we tried one last time and look at the incredible result." Matthew noted: "I'd planned to spend the autumn of our lives travelling the world. Now our little daughter will come with us too."
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