Bravo chronicled Real Housewives of Dallas star, Brandi Redmond’s struggle with infertility, but as the Season 3 premiere nears, the reality star and husband, Bryan, have happy news to report. The couple has adopted a baby boy, Bruin Charles, the addition joining the Redmond family this past winter.
“It’s changed our lives forever,” Brandi tells PEOPLE. “We are obsessed with him, my whole family is. We’re just so blessed.”
Brandi and Bryan share two biological daughters, Brooklyn, 9, and Brinkley, 6, who were no doubt thrilled to welcome a baby bro into the mix.
Bruin was born prematurely on December 31st, weighing in at 4 lbs., 5 oz., and measuring 18 inches. The couple adopted the child via a closed adoption. In a “crazy” twist — Bruin even shares one distinct family trait—strawberry blonde hair.
“It’s crazy,” Brandi says. “He’ll always look like he came from me, which he did — he came from my heart.”
“He’s so, so happy,” Brandi says. “From the moment that I met him for the first time, he just looked straight into my eyes, held my finger as tight as he could, and let out this giant grin. And it’s been like that ever since. He smiles all the time and just giggles and laughs.”
“The only time he cries is when he’s left alone,” Brandi adds, becoming emotional. “I’m sure that’s a normal baby thing, but because of how we got him, I’m especially like, ‘No, you will never be left alone.’ ”
Brandi shares how the unexpected adoption unfolded, and the emotional rollercoaster that led to the family decision.
“For a long time, people would tell me, ‘You’ll know when your family is complete.’ And I never felt that way,” Brandi explains. “I’m blessed to have two beautiful children, but even after having them, in my heart, I knew it wasn’t complete.”
“So we tried again for years,” she continues. “But my fertility was on the decline, and in October, Bryan and I said, ‘You know what, we’re not going to even try anymore.’ I turn 40 in July, and there are so many risks. We just said, ‘Our family is fine with the four of us.’ Adoption wasn’t even on our minds, even though one of my own brothers is adopted. We just walked away from it all.”
Brandi explains that a friend connected her to a social worker, who shared Bruin’s story, in early January. The child’s parents were teenagers, who surrendered him to the state at birth, with no plan in place. A search for a couple who desired a son was soon underway, which led to connecting with the Redmonds.
“It happened pretty much overnight,” Brandi remembers. “He was in the neonatal intensive care unit because he was born prematurely, so we flew out of Dallas — he was still in Texas —and we met him in the hospital. We just immediately fell in love.”
“That connection was there right away,” she adds, remembering how hard it was to say goodbye to him after that first visit. “He had to stay in the NICU for a little longer so when we left the hospital and I had to fly back home, I cried for six hours because I was leaving him. I just wanted to be with my son.”
Brandi reveals that Bravo production followed her emotional journey, and that fans will be able to come along for the ride.
“They followed the whole thing from start to finish,” Brandi says. “It’s a beautiful story. It’s crazy because they captured the rollercoaster of emotions we go through.”
“My maternal instinct kicked in so naturally, which is amazing, but you’ll see that I’m having to relearn some things,” Brandi laughs. “Everything changes in the baby world! Everything is a lot easier now, even though I want to make it a lot harder! I’m like, ‘How do I not know how to work these things?’”
Brandi explains how they decided on their son’s unique name.
“When I was pregnant with Brinkley, the doctor’s said that she was a boy and my husband always loved the name Bruin,” Brandi says. “My husband’s into sports and I think he’s a UCLA fan [despite the fact that] he didn’t go there. And he just loved that name. So Brinkley was ‘Bruin’ for a little bit until they said, ‘Oh no, it’s a girl.’ ”
Brandi notes that her family is now “110% complete,” and shares her thoughts on Bruin’s biological parents.
“His biological parents, I just think they were so brave to make the best decision for him. I’m very honored and excited that he’s a part of our family now,” Brandi adds. “He’s our miracle baby. Things happen for a reason and God gives you exactly what you can handle. This was just meant to be.”
The Real Housewives of Dallas will premiere this summer.