Gabrielle Union knows there’s no cheat sheet when welcoming a newborn.
In November, the “L.A.’s Finest” star and her husband, professional basketball player Dwyane Wade, announced they welcomed a baby girl named Kaavia via surrogate. Union is Parents magazine’s May cover star and, in her feature, she opened up about the chaos of parenting a newborn.
“I suck at swaddling,” she said. “I don’t know whether to use glass or plastic bottles. I never knew there were so many types of nipples. And installing a car seat is like taking the SATs! I don’t have all the answers, which feels terrifying.”
She also mentioned what it’s like to try to make time even just for a shower.
“Kaavia went through a phase of not napping,” she said. “I was like, ‘When do I shower or pee or live?’ So I had to get a little comfortable with her crying, which I had not been. And then I took the quickest shower of all time!”
Union chatted about her blended family, which includes Wade’s three sons and nephew, as well as her infertility struggles, something she’s been open about in recent years. In her 2017 memoir, We’re Going To Need More Wine, the actress wrote that she’s had “eight or nine miscarriages.”
“For three years, my body has been a prisoner of trying to get pregnant — I’ve either been about to go into an IVF cycle, in the middle of an IVF cycle, or coming out of an IVF cycle,” she wrote.
She went public after finding out she had adenomyosis, a condition in which “the tissue that normally lines the uterus (endometrial tissue) grows into the muscular wall of the uterus,” according to the Mayo Clinic, which can cause “an enlarged uterus and painful, heavy periods.”
Union regularly posts photos of Kaavia on her own Instagram account ― the almost-5-month-old has more than 567,000 followers.
The actress told Parents she enjoys letting her fans in on her daughter’s journey.
“Kaavia really is the personification of hope for a lot of people like us, who maybe didn’t have a lot to be hopeful about,” she said. “She represents that maybe there is a light at the end. And when you take people on the low points of your journey, it’s cool to let them be part of the joy.”