At the live reunion show for Survivor: Nicaragua on Sunday, three-time alumnus ‘Boston’ Rob Mariano had his own reveal for the audience — the birth of the latest addition to his and wife Amber‘s tribe.
Carina Rose Mariano was born Friday, Dec. 10 and joins big sister Lucia Rose, 17 months, in a girl-power alliance with mom Amber, 32.
“I’m definitely outnumbered now!” says Rob, 34, with a laugh. “But at the end of the day, it’s exciting and fun. I always thought I would have boys, but as a father, when your kids are born and they’re healthy and happy, that’s the most important thing.”
Amber’s delivery, which was two weeks late, sounded as daring as any Survivor challenge.
“I was on the computer Friday night at 12 o’clock, and she says, ‘I don’t think I’m gonna make it ’til Monday,’ because Monday was the day they were going to induce her had she not had [her] by then,” Rob explains.
“So I said, ‘Okay, let’s gather our stuff and go to the hospital.’ And as I’m standing there, I see her having contractions. They went from five minutes apart to three minutes apart. By the time we got to the car, they were a minute apart, and we live 40 minutes from the hospital. We got there at 2:15 a.m. and she had the baby at 2:25 a.m. There was no time for an I.V., no time for an epidural. It was amazing what she did.”
Rob adds, “It was exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. The baby’s head came out and the umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck. So they had to stop in the middle of it and cut the cord and at that point the baby’s not getting any oxygen. Amber needs to get the rest of the baby out. I don’t know how she did it but in six pushes, she had the baby out.”
After Rob attended the Survivor: Nicaragua finale in L.A., he was on the red-eye back to Florida. “Amber is home, healthy and with the two kids,” he says, “and I am eager to get back.”
As for the origin of the name Carina, Rob says, “Amber and I had a bunch of names and we went back and forth but we ended up on Carina. Literally we were deciding in the hospital — we changed it three times. She and I both like the name.”
And now, new sister Lucia seems to have warmed up to the latest tribe mate as well.
“The first couple days, she didn’t want to have anything to do with her,” Rob laughs. “The first day, she screamed every time she saw her. But in just a short amount of time, she’s really warmed up to her a lot and she’s playing with her, comes up to her and kisses her. It’s great.”
— Cynthia Wang