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Carey, who is expecting twins within weeks, admits she was reluctant to face the camera at such a late stage in her pregnancy, but she wanted a visual record of her "once-in-a-lifetime" experience.

She tells the magazine, "I was feeling very vulnerable about taking pictures at all right now, but then I didn't want to miss this opportunity to document this once-in-a-lifetime experience. My ultimate goal was to share this incredibly personal moment with my true fans."

The singer also reveals her twins - a boy and a girl - are clearly not as camera-shy as their mother: "The babies were kicking almost the entire time; it was unbelievable. Especially the girl - clearly she's a diva in training!... Now I have so much respect for mothers everywhere, especially those who've had difficult pregnancies or given birth to multiples. We need to have Mother's Day once a week!"

Carey's husband, rapper/actor Nick Cannon, is also in awe of his pregnant wife, adding: "I thought I couldn't love Mariah more. But I have a whole new appreciation and admiration for her."