"I kind of feel like everybody knew anyway," the singer tells Harper's Bazaar for its February issue. "I was on tour with a bubble gut!"
The glowing singer, with Marc Anthony at her side onstage, told the crowd during her final Miami concert Nov. 8: "Marc and I are expecting a baby!"
Having ducked the entire issue of the pregnancy for weeks, including when she appeared the previous month on TV with Diane Sawyer and with David Letterman, Lopez, 38, speaking on behalf of herself and Anthony, 39, now says, "I do realize people want to know because they're interested, but this is the first time I'm going through this. This is my experience and my husband's experience, and we get to hold that for a little while."
She adds, "We're just getting used to the fact that we've told everybody."
Still, when it comes to her privacy, "I'm just feeling too protective to open that door right now," says Lopez. "It's a Pandora's box. It's a destructive lifestyle to be out there. I know because I've lived it. Being on the cover of the tabloids every day for two years – it's hard. You start forgetting who you really are inside."
And her husband? "Marc is a really private person, and he's been singing onstage since he was really young. He made me realize you can be an artist, and have credibility and success, without your life being on public display 24 hours a day."
Looks Forward to Time OffShe is aware that the Lopez-Anthony baby will be of tremendous interest to paparazzi, but the infant "will be whatever we are," she says. "Private when it comes to that stuff."
Once the baby arrives, there is the matter of taking time off. Asked how long that will be, Lopez answers, "I don't know – and I like that, because my life has been so planned for so many years. Once I did the tour, I really just wanted to shut it down, and since then I've had to do three things, including a video. It may not sound like a lot, but you know, as this point, any woman can sympathize. It is a lot. I was ready just to sit."