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For EastEnders actress Louisa Lytton and her fiancé Ben Bhanvra, becoming parents has been more magical than they ever could have imagined.
Aura Olivia Bhanvra was welcomed into the world on 30 August at 11.09am ,weighing 6lbs 5oz, and the couple have introduced their daughter to the world in a stunning OK! shoot.
Sporting a full head of dark hair, she instantly stole her parents’ hearts, with Louisa, 32, who plays Ruby Allen on the BBC One soap, describing it as the “best moment of my entire life”.
But Aura's arrival wasn't all smooth-sailing as Louisa endured a three-day labour before doctors decided an emergency c-section was the safest option.
Louisa tells OK!: "The birth wasn’t what I planned. I really wanted a water birth and we did a hypnobirthing course, but at the same time I wasn’t married to the idea because I know sometimes it doesn’t go to plan, so I was open to whatever was safest."
The star went into labour before her due date and adds that she "laboured at home for 14 hours before going in" to hospital, where here waters had to be broken.
"I called the hospital and they said once your contractions are between a certain time to come in," she continues. "But once I went in it just went on for too long with nothing happening so they had to do a section, but she was fine and that’s all that mattered."
Louisa also reveals that she doesn't "really remember much of" her labour, adding: "I was absolutely exhausted and so much is happening to you. I was on gas and air for a lot of it and that’s all I know!"
Admitting it was "scary" when she was told a c-section was needed, Louisa continues: "I was at Barnet Hospital and I have to say they were amazing throughout.
"I think by the time it got to the section, because it wasn’t something I ever planned to have, naturally you do panic.
"But at the same time part of you is so excited because you know they’ll be here any moment. But you’re exhausted and you can’t think logically, especially when you’ve been up for three days.
"I was overwhelmed, but the moment I heard her cry it all went away. They held her up and she cried straight away. It was the best moment of my entire life."
Meanwhile, Louisa's partner Ben admits he felt slightly helpless during the birth.
"It’s really hard because Louisa was in so much pain and there’s not much you can do apart from being supportive and talking about what we were working towards," he says.
"It was tough but I just tried to stay positive and then it was worth it by the time we got to the end because it was amazing."
Louisa adds: "I’ve got to say he really was amazing. I’ve got friends whose partners have fainted, so the fact Ben was standing up for three days helping to get me through was incredible! It definitely brings you even closer together because it’s an experience like no other."
Read Louisa and Ben's full interview – and see all the beautiful pictures from their OK! shoot with baby Aura – here.
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