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India Oxenberg Is Pregnant, Expecting First Baby with Husband Patrick D'Ignazio (Exclusive)

The podcaster and author, a survivor of the NXIVM cult, is expecting her first baby — a girl — with husband Patrick D'Ignazio

<p>Courtesy India Oxenberg</p> India Oxenberg — and bump! — at home in Key West, Fla., on March 10, 2024..

Courtesy India Oxenberg

India Oxenberg — and bump! — at home in Key West, Fla., on March 10, 2024..

When India Oxenberg's mother, Catherine Oxenberg, got married in October, the former Dynasty actress had an important message for her daughter.

"Literally at her wedding, she was like, 'Alright, so have a baby!' " laughs the podcaster and author, 32.

India and her husband of just over three years, Patrick D'Ignazio, had talked about starting a family but "we were waiting for both of us to feel settled," says India, who launched her podcast Still Learning last year.

The two recently bought a home in Key West, where D'Ignazio, a chef, opened his restaurant Eaton Good. Finally, "we were like, 'Okay, I think we're ready now."

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<p>Ysa Perez</p> India Oxenberg and husband Patrick D’Ignazio in Key West, Fla., September 2023.

Ysa Perez

India Oxenberg and husband Patrick D’Ignazio in Key West, Fla., September 2023.

Related: Former Dynasty Star Catherine Oxenberg Marries Businessman Ellis Jones: 'I Feel So Blessed'

Little did they know how quickly it would all happen.

Not long after her mom's nudge, India began feeling nauseous and missed her period. The day after Thanksgiving, she decided to take a pregnancy test.

"And I ended up taking three tests, back-to-back, and they all came out positive," India recalls. "I couldn't believe it."

<p>Courtesy India Oxenberg</p> India Oxenberg in Key West, Fla., March 2024.

Courtesy India Oxenberg

India Oxenberg in Key West, Fla., March 2024.

She went to her husband with her three positive tests "and we were both — like a cartoon — 'Blink, blink, blink, blink, blink.' It was really sweet," she says. "But it took a little bit to fully sink in, because you're sort of in disbelief. You're like, 'Really? What is happening? Are we really doing this?'"

India, who is due July 31, says the feeling was overwhelming.

"I felt really emotional about it, and really blessed, and just like, 'Wow, this really is something that I've always wanted, that I in a way told myself I didn't want for so long,' " says India, whose memoir, Still Learning, was released in 2021. "Because it was so vulnerable to think about having my own family, and what that means to me."

<p>Ysa Perez</p> India Oxenberg at home in Key West, Fla., September 2023.

Ysa Perez

India Oxenberg at home in Key West, Fla., September 2023.

Related: India Oxenberg Opens Up About Her Healing Journey Five Years After Leaving the NXIVM Cult (Exclusive)

It's been a long journey to this moment for India, who, with the help of her mother, escaped the headline-making NXIVM cult in 2018 after seven years of abuse. The new life that she's welcoming is, she says, "a fresh start."

"This next phase of life for me is really about living and being able to have a joyful life," she says. "Because even though I know being a parent is going to be challenging at times, I feel like it's giving me permission to put a lot of what I went through in the past and be present with this new future that I'm creating."

"And that makes me feel really emotional, because it's been so difficult to not have these old wounds resurface. And so it's like, 'Wow, now I have something entirely new to focus on that has nothing to do with that path.'"

<p>Courtesy India Oxenberg</p> India Oxenberg (and baby bump!) at home in Key West, Fla., March 10, 2024

Courtesy India Oxenberg

India Oxenberg (and baby bump!) at home in Key West, Fla., March 10, 2024

A few weeks ago, she learned that they are having a baby girl — another source of excitement — and anxiety, she says.

"When I found out it was a girl, I was like, 'Wow, this is going to be hopefully my best friend!' And then also, simultaneously, I felt really scared and nervous because I've experienced a lot of beautiful things to do with being a woman, but also terrifying things about being a woman."

<p>Phillip Faraone/Getty</p> India Oxenberg (right) with mother Catherine in 2022.

Phillip Faraone/Getty

India Oxenberg (right) with mother Catherine in 2022.

Her mother was thrilled when she heard the news, she says: "She was so excited. She was like, 'Yay, we get to buy pink!' Because she knows I'm a jeans and T-shirt girl."

Now in her second trimester, Oxenberg says she's feeling good and enjoying some of the perks of pregnancy.

<p>Courtesy India Oxenberg</p> India Oxenberg (and baby bump!) at home in Key West, Fla., March 10, 2024

Courtesy India Oxenberg

India Oxenberg (and baby bump!) at home in Key West, Fla., March 10, 2024

"I just love the treatment that you get when you're pregnant, when pretty much everybody's nice to you," she says.

"I had learned to subjugate my own needs in the past, and now it's like, 'Wait a minute, I'm hungry, I'm thirsty.' And you just feel like your needs really matter, because it's not about you anymore. It's about this perfect little life. And I've learned to respect that in myself, and now I'm feeling that respect from other people. And that's really cool."

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