It’s easy to take a look at Lea Michele’s Instagram feed—which is chock full of serene, lovely images of her and her son, Ever Leo, snuggling—and think you know the whole story. The multi-hyphenate is clearly beyond in love with her firstborn and is rocking motherhood. But she just revealed some intimate details about all she faced before and during her pregnancy, and Michele’s struggles will likely resonate with so many mamas out there.

Michele, who shares her infant son with husband Zandy Reich, appeared on Katherine Schwarzenegger’s Instagram live series, BDA Baby, where she came clean about so many aspects of her journey to motherhood.

It all started before Michele even conceived her son. “I definitely withheld a lot of my experience from the people around me,” Michele shared. “I found out I was pregnant very unexpectedly in December 2019. My husband and I tried for awhile. I have [a condition called] PCOS, so our process of conceiving was very complicated.”

Michele shared that she underwent multiple surgeries to remove polyps, cysts and scar tissue from her body, which left her in a cycle of constantly being on medication or healing from a procedure. In November 2019, Michele and her husband decided to take a break from trying, which led Michele to consider that she’d never become a mom—something she referred to as her biggest fear.

Shortly after that, the singer found out she was pregnant. But then, something terrifying happened.

“I was there performing, and shortly right before walking onto the stage to have to perform for a large group of people, I started bleeding terribly, horribly. I’m backstage. No one knows except for my husband that I’m pregnant,” she revealed.

“I had to tell my mom that I was pregnant in the bathroom and so, that [bleeding] lasted my entire first trimester. I experienced very heavy bleeding, some which was scary to the point that we rushed in the middle of the night to the hospital and probably every other day we were certain that this time was definitely it.”

Michele was put on progesterone to help her body sustain the pregnancy, and was placed on bed rest through her first trimester. “It was absolutely, absolutely horrible. I thought it was the most scared I would ever be in my life,” Michele said.

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The complications didn’t end after her first trimester, either: At her 20-week anatomy scan, Michele learned there were “red flag markers” found during the ultrasound. Hearing this news was even more difficult because Michele was forced to attend prenatal appointments alone due to the pandemic.

“I finally announced that I was pregnant and I still was uncertain if the pregnancy was going to last, but I just needed to,” Michele said. “It was the lowest I’ve been in my entire life. I remember I would wake my husband up in the middle of the night and just be like, you have to hold me, I’m terrified right now. We were all really, really afraid.”

Luckily, Michele and Reich welcomed their baby boy in August of 2020. But as someone who went through a complicated pregnancy myself, I understand how this sort of experience really sticks with you, and I commend Michele for telling her story in such raw detail. This whole conversation between two new mamas is truly worth a watch.

“My little baby was such a fighter, he really was a fighter,” Michele shared. “And I remember the minute I held him, the first thing I said to him was, ‘You did so good. You did it. You did so good.'”