Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan, 41, welcomes 'miracle' baby

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Surprise! Retired figure skater Michelle Kwan is a mom.

The two-time Olympic medalist announced the birth of her first child, a baby girl named Kalista Belle Kwan, on Instagram Wednesday with a sweet photo of the newborn.

"I’m overjoyed and tears of happiness are streaming down my face as I share the news," the 41-year-old wrote. "I’ve always wanted to be a mom and, to me, she’s a perfect miracle."

Kwan said her "journey to motherhood" was "challenging" and included a "very long labor," but she said she's glad she "never gave up." She wrote, "I had a hard time picturing what she might look like yet it seems like she’s been in my life forever."

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Kwan, who won a silver medal at the 1998 Winter Olympics and bronze at the 2002 games, said she kept her pregnancy under wraps because "each milestone seemed to be exciting and daunting at the same time."

"As people closest to me know, I’m always full of surprises and tend to keep my personal life private," she wrote. "I’ve wanted to share this happy news for many months but… each step of the way, I knew that there was still more time needed until I could hold her in my arms."

Michelle Kwan attends "The Last Ship" opening night performance in Los Angeles.
Michelle Kwan attends "The Last Ship" opening night performance in Los Angeles.

She shared a time-lapse video of her growing baby bump through her pregnancy: "Here’s a quick montage of the last 9 months to catch you all up."

Kwan said she's "so grateful" for the support of her friends, family and health care professionals, "including my fertility doctor, doctors and nurses who looked after me."

The first-time mom also sent words on encouragement to "anyone trying to conceive in any which way," adding, "You’re not alone on this path and I’m pulling for you."

Kwan was previously married to Coast Guard Lieutenant Clay Pell from 2013-2017. Last month she was nominated by President Biden to serve as ambassador to Belize.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Michelle Kwan's 'miracle' baby: Olympic figure skater welcomes child