TV Personality of the Year Nicola “Nix” Adams is used to sharing candid details about her life with the world as Aotearoa’s favourite straight-talking social media star, so when she recently discovered she was pregnant, it was natural she would want to tell her 1.3m audience the joyous news.
But it was a mix of happiness and trauma for Nix, who sadly suffered a miscarriage in December after tragically losing her 16-month-old son Alaska eight years ago as he slept.
“This pregnancy leading up to now has been absolutely filled with anxiety because I thought there was a huge possibility I’d miscarry like I did last year at 11 weeks, but we made it through, and we’re at 12 weeks now and happy as,” says the former co-host of Māori Television’s Terei Tonight, 34.
“We had a scan this morning and it was beautiful watching our baby’s arms moving. Those arms are going to wrap around our necks.”
A former methamphetamine addict, who refers to her devoted following as her whānau and dislikes the term influencer, finding out she’s growing another baby with her partner of three years, Dennis,
a qualified youth worker, triggered nightmares, and post traumatic stress disorder.
“I so desperately wanted to be happy and overjoyed, but the trauma of the miscarriage was too strong, and it was stopping me from being excited because I was so scared,” tells the Wellington-based TikTok star, who is best known for her humorous skits and storytelling.
“I’ve gone through packs of morning sickness pills and I love it, man! Whenever I’m spewy, it’s a sign for me when I wake up that I’m still pregnant and our baby’s here and pumping!”
Nix was 25 and living in Australia when Alaska passed away from an unknown illness. Sober at the time, but overcome by grief, Nix turned to drugs to numb her pain and spiralled into addiction. It led to prostitution, two jail stints and loss of contact with her three children, whose father returned to New Zealand with them.
When the determined mum managed to get clean in February 2018, she wanted to reunite with her kids and hoping to show their father she was sober, Nix posted a video on Facebook. At the time, still showing signs of her previous meth use including missing teeth, she quickly gained social media attention for her raw and entertaining videos.
Returning to Aotearoa in April that year, she named her page Cooked Whānau Korero, which has since been changed to CWK in representation of the words ‘courage, wisdom and knowledge’.
“I’m used to speaking with no filter while live streaming and I love social media for that purpose. You can be your true, authentic self,” says Nix, who never expected to win Personality of the Year 2022 at the New Zealand TV Awards. “Being on TV was a whole new experience because they have certain etiquette. I was shocked I won since I only dipped my feet in that pool and was up against television veterans. They’re in that pool, doing backstroke and breaststroke!”
For Nix’s family, it was no surprise when she ended up on TV, where she’ll appear again on Friday, June 24, as co-host of a two-hour live TVNZ and TikTok music event, dubbed Purapura Whetū – Stars of Matariki.
“My cousin says I used to walk around like I already had cameras on me when I was a kid. I remember riding in circles on my bike in the front yard by myself, pretending I was Sally Jessy or Ricki Lake and I was interviewing someone,” laughs Whangarei-born Nix, who’ll host the Matariki event alongside singer-songwriter Kings and Sonny Ngatai.
Today, Nix has regained full-time custody of her two youngest kids and with her partner’s two sons also in the mix, she’s loving blended family life and staying busy – a tool she picked up during her drug recovery.
“Last year when we decided to have another child, I was finally ready after doing some healing. Finding out we were having a girl was the happiest moment in the world, and then we miscarried,” recalls Nix, who’ll announce the gender of their baby in a few weeks. “My partner encouraged me to adopt the mindset of acceptance. We looked at it as though it wasn’t our baby’s time, but it wasn’t to say she wouldn’t come back.”
Describing her upcoming addition as their rainbow baby – a term used for an infant born after the loss of a child – Nix has helped spread awareness about miscarriage on her platform, along with topics like domestic violence, sexual abuse, mental health and drug addiction.
“Out of everything I’ve done, the TV and social media, I’m most proud of the fact the kids are in my full custody. It’s hard trying to claw your way out of addiction, but I did it and they’re my reward,” she says. “Having this beautiful, blended family and bringing another child into our family is my biggest accomplishment.”
Purapura Whetū – Stars of Matariki streams live on Friday 24 June from 9pm on TVNZ+ and on TikTok @tvnz.official