The tennis star and her boyfriend are the parents of one child, daughter Shai
The four-time Grand Slam singles champion and American rapper boyfriend welcomed their first child, daughter Shai, together in July 2023. The exciting news came five months after the pair revealed they were expecting in January via Instagram.
"Can’t wait to get back on the court but here’s a little life update for 2023," Osaka captioned her post, featuring a carousel of images that included a photo of an ultrasound screen and a heartfelt message. In the note, which was written in English and Japanese in the following slides, the tennis star reflected on her next chapter.
"The past few years have been interesting to say the least, but I find that it's the most challenging times in life that may be the most fun. These few months away from the sport has really given me a new love and appreciation for the game I've dedicated my life to," she wrote.
"I realize that life is so short and I don't take any moments for granted, every day is a new blessing and adventure. I know that I have so much to look forward to in the future, one thing I'm looking forward to is for my kid to watch one of my matches and tell someone, 'that's my mom,' haha," Osaka continued in part.
Osaka also vowed to get back to tennis after welcoming her firstborn with Cordae, whom she began dating in 2019. In fact, just six weeks after giving birth to Shai, Osaka was back on the grind and shared her intense workouts on social media.
"2023 will be a year that'll be full of lessons for me and I hope I'll see you guys in the start of the next one cause I'll be at Aus 2024. Love you all infinitely," she wrote on Instagram.
Here's everything to know about Osaka and Cordae's baby girl, Shai.
Her name has a special meaning
When speaking with PEOPLE in early 2023, the mom-to-be hinted at her thoughts on baby names. "We have been discussing names. I would say that we are going for something more unique than traditional," she said at the time.
Osaka's boyfriend Cordae announced their daughter's name while performing a concert at Canada's Calgary Stampede in July 2023.
"My daughter Shai was just born a couple days ago, so I dedicate this performance to my baby girl Shai," he told the audience in between songs. "Love you, I'm going back home," he added.
Amid her maternity leave from tennis, Osaka explained to ESPN at the 2023 US Open why she and Cordae chose their daughter's name. Shai means "God’s gift," she revealed.
"That’s how I wanted her to feel, like she’s God’s gift to me and her dad," she added. As for how motherhood is treating Osaka, she said "it's definitely a weird feeling knowing that someone relies on me."
However, she knows who to reach out to for help when needed. "I still call my mom all the time," she admitted. "And knowing that this little person is going to grow up and do the same … I’m excited for it."
Naomi didn't reveal if she was having a boy or girl right away
In June 2023, Osaka announced that she was expecting a baby girl during a princess-themed baby shower. "☺️🤍💜," she simply captioned the set of photos shared on Instagram, where she posed in front of pink and purple balloons.
Although she announced the sex of her baby in June, the pro tennis player had known since February. "I've been preparing, but he doesn't know the gender yet, only I know," Osaka revealed to PEOPLE at the time, referencing boyfriend Cordae. "So it's not like I can build out the room or anything."
She made her Instagram debut in July 2023
In the photo, Shai can be seen wearing a white onesie with tennis motifs scattered across the fabric. Osaka also included a photo of her bump, her in the hospital and a photo of a picnic with 'Mom' balloons in the background.
"Well that was a cool little intermission," Osaka cheekily captioned the photos. "Now back to your regularly scheduled program 🎾✌🏾💕."
Naomi wants to make Shai 'proud'
Osaka wants to put mental health first, for her baby and all kids around the globe. Prior to giving birth to Shai, the then-mom-to-be teamed up with Modern Health to launch a collection of children's meditations to learn about mental health and wellness.
As the CDC's Youth Risk Behavior Survey warns of an unprecedented youth mental health crisis, Osaka hopes to be part of the change — from speaking out about her own mental health to being a resource for other young people.
Like other new parents, Osaka wants a better world for her own child to grow and thrive in and begins that work with herself. "For me," she told PEOPLE in March 2023, "I just want to be the best version of myself."
"Obviously, I've never been a mother before so I'm taking it day-by-day and just trying to be someone that my son or daughter will be proud of," she added.
Her nursery is 'cloud themed'
Shortly after Shai's birth, Osaka spoke with PEOPLE about her daughter's nursery and the meaning behind its design. "I wanted something that felt very peaceful and serene that would help the baby and me feel comfortable," she told PEOPLE.
"The Crate & Kids team really brought that vibe to life through the color palette and all the textures, but also through the beautiful cloud mural they painted on the walls." However, pinpointing a creative direction wasn't easy.
"That was the hardest part because I liked them all and it was difficult to pick one!" she admitted. "We ultimately landed on the cloud theme, which feels really perfect for what we envisioned."
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Read the original article on People.