Calling her 60-hour labor the “best dance” she’s ever had with partner Matthew McConaughey, model Camila Alves opens up in a new interview with BabyCenter.com about the “blessed moment” she became mom to Levi, 10 ½-weeks. However, even the best-laid plans have been known to go awry, and Camila admits that she was hoping for a natural birth. “We tried every single way” to avoid a medical intervention, the 25-year-old first-time mom says — including spending one 14-hour stretch contracting at every two minutes, with no pain relief! “I wasn’t too crazy about having to do a C-section and take all the drugs. Finally, I had to just be like, ‘Let it go, make peace with it, it’s not what God or nature is telling you to do.’”
“You have to make peace with it and be thankful that you have great doctors and a great hospital. It was different than how I wanted to do it, but [Levi] came out eyes wide open, happy, healthy.”
Although she is now at ease with the way her son entered the world, Camila says she wouldn’t recommend a C-section — and she has trouble understanding why some women elect to have the procedure when it is not medically necessary. “There’s a lot of pain and recovery is not fun,” she notes. “You already went through the whole pregnancy, and you don’t want to sit around for six to eight weeks in recovery. If there’s any advice I could give to a pregnant women, it’d be to have a natural birth.” Camila says she was helped immensely by a very “hands-on” Matthew during the delivery, something that is reflected in her advice for other expectant moms.
“Staying calm is the best thing you can do. Relax. Be peaceful. Try to listen to your partner.”
Click ‘more’ to read about how Levi fits into Camila and Matthew’s lifestyle.
Camila — who says that nursing is “going great, thank God” and that Levi is at the breast “all the time” — is not overly-concerned about returning to her pre-baby body, predicting that “everything will get back to the way it’s supposed to be in time.” The couple plan to raise Levi to be bi-lingual, because most of Camila’s family does not speak English. “It’s so important for the baby,” she explains. “He’s going to know all his American roots, but he also needs to know about his Brazilian side.” With the couple’s willingness to hit the road with Levi in tow, it doesn’t sound like getting to know Camila’s family will be a problem! Of being out and about with baby, Camila says it’s a state of being that Levi actually seems to prefer.
“If our lifestyle was doing anything to harm him, we’d have to adapt, but he loves it. He loves the action. He loves to be right in the middle of it. He actually doesn’t like it when it’s too quiet.”
Adding a baby hasn’t done much to change the dynamic between Matthew and Camila, either. “We’re just who we are and now we have one extra member of the tribe,” she says. “We still do the same things. We just take a little extra time to prep, a little extra time to leave the house.” That laid-back approach to parenting is in keeping with the couple’s laid-back approach to life, and Camila shares that — perhaps not so coincidentally — fatherhood has come naturally to Matthew.
“He’s the best dad he can be. He’s 100 percent hands-on.”