Click through the slideshow for some of my favorite shots of Shai.
When you’re a celebrity, privacy is a luxury that eventually runs out. As I’ve mentioned before, parenthood has brought out the “mama bear” instinct in Maks and I. From minute one we knew it was our job to protect this little person and we’ve taken that job seriously every moment since. So this past month and a half we’ve tried to keep Shai for ourselves, like our little secret that only we get to enjoy – but babies aren’t secrets and keeping him hidden away forever isn’t realistic or healthy. Now, after taking as much time as we could to enjoy these precious first moments of his life, we’re finally ready to share Shai with the world.
Thank you all for the support, excitement and patience you’ve shown my new little family. I’ve received so much love from so many sources that can’t wait to share this huge piece of my heart with you all.
People have asked how we came up with our baby’s name.
First of all, naming a baby – who will one day be an adult out in the world – is hard. It took months and months to find a name that both Maks and I loved and kind of embodied what he means to us. We knew that we wanted a shorter name that wasn’t super-complicated because “Chmerkovskiy” is kind of a mouthful and he’ll always have to spell it out for people. We finally settled on Shai, pronounced “shy” and means “gift” in Hebrew. Honestly, it’s a perfect fit because from the very beginning, we felt like this little life we made was the most precious gift God could grant us.
Shai’s middle name, Aleksander, was all Maks. Maks didn’t grow up with a middle name, but I definitely wanted Shai to have one. So we gave him his middle name after Maks’ dad Aleksandr (spelled a little differently to honor Shai’s heritage but also make it unique to him). It was a really special moment for Maks to have his dad be a part of something we created.
Side note, in Russian culture, they have this really cute way of adding “–chka” to the end of names as a term of endearment. Like, when I joined the Chmerkovskiy family, they gave me the name “Peta-chka.” So, within the family, we’ve taken to calling him “Shai-chka.”
So, there you have it: our little gift. Shai Aleksander Chmerkovskiy, welcome to the world.
Photo Credit: Stefania Orru