star Toni Street says she was hit by a "mystery illness" three weeks after giving birth to her second child, Mackenzie.
"It's been a really difficult time" the TV personality revealed to Woman's Day magazine after she had to have her diseased gall bladder removed.
"There have been some very low moments, but I'm just so pleased I'm getting better now and I can focus on my family again."
Street spent five days in hospital with vomiting and stomach pain, leaving the doctors scratching their heads as to what was wrong.
"I had every test you could imagine to try find out what was causing the pain," Street says.
"It was scary not knowing what was wrong and meanwhile I was so sick I couldn't even hold my baby. I just spend hours lying down in the shower trying to cope with the pain.
"Matt would bring the baby in to see me, but I felt totally helpless because I was so weak and I could only hold her for a few seconds."
Street's husband Matt France says that "it was pretty frightening" seeing his wife in that state.
"It was really hard seeing Toni going though that straight after the pregnancy and childbirth. It seemed unfair."
Puzzled doctors discharged Street from hospital with no real answers as to what was causing her pain. It wasn't until she sought help from a private specialist was she diagnosed with a diseased gall bladder.
"When the specialist said he'd worked out what it was, I felt like hugging him! I wasn't even nervous about having an operation because I was just so desperate to feel better.
Since the surgery Street is on her way back to full health and able to spend more time with her new baby, now eight weeks old.
Street also has a message for other New Zealand mums: "I want to get the message out to other women who are in pain after having a baby that it could be your gall bladder.
"Apparently it's not uncommon and I'd hate for someone to go weeks like I did wondering what's wrong. I've learnt you really have to push for answers."
• Read the full article in this week's Woman's Day.