Shahs of Sunset's Mercedes 'MJ' Javid Opens Up About 'Blessing' of Pregnancy After IVF
Mercedes “MJ” Javid couldn’t be happier with just a few weeks to go until she becomes a mother, and she’s not shying away from the public despite the “mommy-shaming” she is already enduring.
The Shahs of Sunset star, 46, is expecting a baby boy with her husband, marketing director Tommy Feight — and she reveals exclusively to PEOPLE in this week’s issue how she’s fighting back against accusations from the public about her pregnancy.
“A lot of people on social [media] have already come at me for faking my pregnancy,” she says, giving examples: “My face doesn’t look pregnant, my nose doesn’t look swollen, my bump isn’t big enough, I am using a surrogate, I am making this up for attention.”
Despite these accusations, the mom-to-be isn’t interested in letting the negative public opinions get to her.
“I don’t mind the shaming, I just think it’s very odd that so many people would think a woman would make a choice to lie about something so important,” she explains. “I think if I get mom shamed, I’m not going to care … if anyone wants to mom shame or bully someone in general, they should bully me because I won’t be affected.”
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Javid discovered she was expecting her first child in August via in vitro fertilization, after difficulties in getting pregnant for some time.
“When you do IVF, you take progesterone shots and medication for almost a month leading up to your [embryo] transfer. You are basically pumping yourself up with hormones,” she recalls. “That made me gain weight, it made me very moody, it made me feel not my usual self. It is something people don’t know, or maybe they don’t talk about.”
Javid hit a hiccup earlier in the summer when doctors discovered polyps in her uterine lining; they had to first remove them before they could do an embryo transfer. She then had a little bit of “down time” before going on medication again. Doctors finally transferred the embryo on Aug. 23 — and it stuck.
“We had that grueling 10-day waiting period when you’ve done the transfer but you don’t know if it worked, and you just have to wait until you are 10 days in so it will show up on a blood test,” the star tells PEOPLE. “We basically just hung out, stayed super calm and positive and laughed a lot and waited until we went in and got the blood test and urine test.”
And when the news was positive? “That moment was just surreal,” Javid says. “It was the blessing we had been praying for. It was just the beginning of, ‘Finally, thank God.’ ”
Along with pregnancy struggles, the Bravo star also faced a family tragedy last year: her father’s death.
“I had this strong faith that if God was going to take my father away, he was going to give me a baby,” she says of her dad, who died in May 2018.
Javid is planning to keep his legacy alive through lessons she’ll teach her child.
“My father taught me and treated me and spoke to me like an equal as far back as I can remember,” she explains. “He was always trusting, positive, encouraging and gave me a sky-is-the-limit outlook … I want to raise my child in similar ways [that] my father did. Just being really calm and giving me independence. I think the tools I was given by him are some of the best things.”
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As for a name for their baby, Javid and Feight “are not on the same page. We are disagreeing,” she says.
But “I’m going to make it a win-win for both of us,” the star continues. “I am going to make sure Tommy is happy, and I want it to be a name that is culturally acknowledging his Irish side and my Persian side. I want it to be a name that will be beneficial for someone to have throughout their life, because it is part of your identity.”
With the due date approaching, the couple has begun baby preparations, including purchasing Nuna baby strollers. Javid also plans to both breastfeed and use formula: “It won’t just be necessarily one, but eventually both,” she shares with PEOPLE.
Throughout her pregnancy, Javid has gotten support from friends and family, as well as her fellow Shahs of Sunset cast members and new dad Andy Cohen.
“Nema [Vand] is awesome. He takes care of the FOMO department because he’ll bring me all of his drama and events he goes to, and I get to play Dr. Phil with his dating life, so we are always in touch,” she jokes. “He makes me feel like I am still going out and still in the fray of L.A. life.”
Looking ahead to the baby’s arrival, Javid shares that she is both excited and nervous for motherhood.
“The thing I am most afraid of is that the fact that I am responsible for this little creature 24 hours, seven days a week,” she says. “Being a new mom will be nerve-racking. I am going to be worried that I am doing everything little thing right and worried I’m doing everything wrong.”
“I am most excited to fall in love on a different level and [for] motherhood and something that Tommy and I have created together,” Javid reveals. “I am most excited to experience something that apparently you cannot feel unless you experience it.”
For more from Mercedes “MJ” Javid, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.