Greek American Maria Menounos welcomed her daughter Athena Alexandra via surrogate recently and announced the news to Us Weekly on Wednesday.
The TV host and her husband Keven Undergaro eventually welcomed their “miracle baby” towards the end of last month after a decade of fertility issues.
The 45-year-old star, who recently became a Greek citizen, told Us Weekly that she will never forget what it was like to hold her baby girl for the first time.
“It was the most special moment of my life. The doctor literally grabbed her and hiked her onto me. I sat with her on my chest, and Keven and I kept looking at each other like, ‘Oh, my God.’ It was just pure joy.”
A Greek name for Menounos’ daughter
Asked by Us Magazine why the couple chose Athena as the name of the child, Menounos replied:
“We knew we wanted a Greek name. We had a list, and everyone says when you see the baby, you’ll know, but that was totally untrue for us. We were like, “What do we do?” Athena is the goddess of war and wisdom, and Keven loved the power of that name, so that was it!”
Now Menounos wants more kids. “I have one good embryo left. We’ll see, it would have to be fast. The joy that Athena has brought to this house — I want more of that. It feels so good. There have been a lot of rough times, but I know all of that is behind us, and all of the good stuff is ahead,” she told Us Weekly.
Menounos’ 10-year journey to motherhood has been a long and difficult one. Infertility issues led to IVF treatments, which were halted when the “Heal Squad” podcast host and former E! News anchor was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2017; the tumor was removed, and she was given a clean bill of health, but her neurosurgeon advised her against carrying a child.
“Just after a decade of trying everything, we are so grateful to the beautiful family helping us conceive our baby,” Menounos announced in February. “Keven, my dad and I are all beyond excited for this soul to come into our lives. What a blessing.”
“I am always soooo happy in Greece! Feeling so beyond blessed,” she captioned one of her photos in which she posed by the Greek flag.