Welcome to the World Romeo John Roberto Da Re

Son of Rebecca Smith and Roberto Da Re
Born on the 29th of October 2011, at the Kensington Wing,
Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, weighing 8lb

ebecca and Roberto both work in the travel industry, and they met at a conference in Cyprus in 2008. The cosmopolitan pair had a pretty enviable-sounding existence during the early days of their relationship. “We fell head over heels for each other and we had the time of our lives,” says Rebecca. “We both travelled extensively for work, as well as having fantastic holidays. Roberto would fly out to New York when I was on business and we enjoyed many happy times there.”

Roberto is originally from Verona, in Italy, and for the couple’s first trip away together he took Rebecca to his home town. “Roberto swept me off my feet – he took me to Venice for the weekend, and then to Verona to meet his friends and family. We visited Juliet’s balcony, which is just a few streets away from where Roberto grew up – it was perfect!”

Two years later, Roberto proposed to Rebecca on the very same balcony. From early in their relationship, the couple had anticipated having children together and, shortly after getting engaged, Rebecca stopped taking the pill. “I’d been on it for almost ten years, so we assumed that it would be at least six months before anything happened. We thought that if I did fall pregnant beforehand it wouldn’t change anything, and that we’d be over the moon – if it happened… it happened.”

Much to their surprise, Rebecca became pregnant just a month and a half later. “I was at work, and suddenly felt very sick during lunch; after a Google self-diagnosis, I decided to do a pregnancy test. I absolutely didn’t expect a positive result, so I just put it to one side. When I looked down there were two very clear lines! I phoned my mum to see if there was any way it could be wrong, and spent the rest of the afternoon looking down at the test in complete shock.”

“I asked Roberto to meet me by the river, where we’d had our first date, and, in the pouring rain, I handed him a note that I’d written, telling him that he was going to be a dad. It was the most incredible, surreal and euphoric moment.”

Ever since they’d first discussed having children Roberto and Rebecca had imagined themselves with a son, and they were keen to find out the sex of their baby as early as possible. “We had a strong gut instinct that we were having a little boy. There was no way that we could have waited to find out, so we paid for a 16 week gender scan. At first they thought it was a girl, and we were a bit shocked because I’d had such a strong feeling that it was a boy, but we had to have a walk around because the scan wasn’t clear enough, and on our return they confirmed that it was a boy. We knew his name immediately – Romeo.”

Now they knew for sure that they were having a son, Rebecca and Roberto were able to make all the necessary preparations. “We bought everything we could possibly need – it was blue heaven!”
Rebecca had hoped to have a water birth, however, after having to be induced at 39 weeks, things didn’t go exactly the way she’d planned. “A drip went in at 12.30pm and the contractions started thick and fast – my ‘no epidural’ went out of the window!”

Romeo’s heart rate dropped during contractions, which concerned the medical staff, and Rebecca had to be closely monitored. Happily, though, at 8pm that evening, Romeo was born – a healthy 8lbs. “It didn’t happen the way I’d planned, but we were told afterwards that he just made it – any later and it would have been a c-section.”

Rebecca was immediately smitten. “It was as though I’d met him before. The love was so strong that it hurt. He opened his eyes straight away when he heard my voice and he looked straight at me – I’ll remember that moment for the rest of my life. I’d been adamant during the pregnancy that I wouldn’t breastfeed, but it was the most instant, natural thing, and he latched on straight away. I didn’t give it a second thought.”

After a steep learning curve during the first few weeks, and a few middle of the night calls to Rebecca’s mother, the couple are loving parenthood. “Suddenly the cloud just lifts – you get to know each other and learn what works and what doesn’t. I thought I would miss some of our previous freedom, but now I just couldn’t imagine being without Romeo. It’s the same for Roberto too – Romeo has completed us.”

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