It's been a busy couple of years for The Real Housewives of Atlanta alum Kenya Moore, who got married to husband Marc Daly in June 2017, and just welcomed their first child, daughter Brooklyn Doris Daly on Sunday, November 4, 2018. Now the new mom is opening up about her experience giving birth at age 47 in an article for O, The Oprah Magazine.
"I was never the kind of girl who wanted to have a child without a husband," she began, revealing that behind that sentiment was her experience as the daughter of a teen mother who abandoned her (she was then raised by her grandmother and aunt — Brooklyn's middle name, Doris, is in tribute to Kenya's grandmother). "I had a lot of issues growing up that impacted what I wanted my own family to look like one day," she wrote. "When I did see [my mother] when I got older, there was a lot of cruelty and rejection. As you can imagine, all of that hurt me to my core for many years."
Kenya revealed that for many years, she didn't even want to have children, and never discussed her body or fertility with friends or family. That changed in her early 30s, when she started to experience "extreme pain that I learned was caused by fibroids, or abnormal growths in the uterus," she explained, adding that she had to have several myomectomies to have the fibroids removed.
As she began to think about starting a family in her mid-30s, she learned that the procedures to treat her fibroids could affect her fertility, and so she examined her options.
"It was overwhelming," Kenya recalled. "Should I freeze my eggs to use with my future husband? Wait for the right partner and just consider adoption one day? Surrogacy? I had no idea what to do."
Kenya revealed that at age 40, she flew to an island for an assessment at a clinic known for helping women her age get pregnant via in vitro fertilization. "My first test indicated it was basically impossible for me to get pregnant on my own, But then another test came back with promising results. So I could still try to have a baby, whether on my own or via IVF—but I wasn't ready for next steps because I hadn’t found someone I wanted to have a child with," she wrote.
That all changed when she met her now-husband Marc and married him at age 46. "We tried on our own for a little while, but we had to be realistic about the fact that our best chances were through IVF," Kenya recalled, adding that their first round of IVF failed but their second round worked!
Kenya said that she's thankful for the support she's received on social media and RHOA. She hopes she has inspired others in her position. "If I could tell Black women anything, it would be: Listen to your body. If something doesn't feel right, do not be afraid to go see a doctor or a specialist. Living with a problem is never the answer. That’s what I did with my fibroids. There I was, walking around with growths in my uterus, and I had no idea. And that could have affected my prospects of carrying a baby."
She also added a message of hope for women looking to start families: "I’d also say that if you do run into struggles, don’t give up. IVF, egg freezing, surrogates, adoption—it can all sound overwhelming and expensive. But there are ways to find the funds, from financing to loans. So don't panic. There are always options."