Almost three years after welcoming Kaavia, Gabrielle Union is opening up about her surrogacy experience. The 48-year-old is writing a book on the subject, You Got Anything Stronger? 

In an excerpt, she revealed that she desperately wanted to carry Kaavia herself. She wrote: “I was not ready [for a gestational carrier after suffering multiple miscarriages. I wanted the experience of being pregnant. To watch my body expand and shift to accommodate this miracle inside me.”

She wrote that she was prepared to take Lupron, which can cause “early menopause and [lead users to] break bones very easily,” but that her husband Dwayne Wade intervened. 

“You’ve done enough,” the athlete, 39, told Union, she recalled. “As much as we want this baby, I want you. We’ve lost too much in our relationship for me to be OK with encouraging you to do one more thing to your body and your soul.”

Wade is father to Zaire, 19, Zaya, 14, and Xavier, 7, who was conceived during a break from his relationship with Union, making her feel even worse about her inability to conceive. She explained, “The experience of Dwyane having a baby so easily — while I was unable to — left my soul not just broken into pieces, but shattered into fine dust scattering in the wind.”

The couple’s surrogate did conceive in 2018, but her baby bump made Union feel “even more worthless.” The Being Mary Jane alum saw it as “a manifestation of [her] failure.”

But it was worth it when Kaavia was born in 2018. “She was loved even as an idea. My body seized in a full release of every emotion,” Union wrote of the now-2-year-old’s birth. “Relief, anxiety, terror, joy, resentment, disbelief, gratitude … and also, disconnection. I had hoped that the second I saw her, there would be a moment of locking in.”

But there are shadows. “I will always wonder if Kaav would love me more if I had carried her,” Union wrote. “Would our bond be even tighter? I will never know what it would have been like to carry this rockstar inside me.”