courtesy Nick Carter
Nick Carter is getting candid about his daughter's time in the neonatal intensive care unit, calling it the "scariest thing."
The Backstreet Boys member, 41, welcomed daughter Pearl in April after "experiencing some minor complications" at birth. The singer recently spoke to PEOPLE to reflect on the nerve-wracking moments in the hospital and his adjustment to life as a father of three.
"To see your child being born and then having to be put in the NICU ... it's the scariest thing. But I think that's what makes it a blessing," Carter — who also shares son Odin Reign, 5, and daughter Saoirse, 2, with wife Lauren — says of Pearl, now 7 months.
"All my children are a blessing to me and I'm a very strong believer in God. I'm very happy that she's here in our lives and we will do everything that we can to make sure that all of our kids are protected and loved."
Carter shares that during Pearl's five days in the NICU, he was "really emotional" as he wondered whether or not her oxygen levels would rise while also being cautious of the possibility of COVID.
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Carter provided minimal details about the complications on social media, and says the only reason he shared with fans was to show his appreciation for the doctors and nurses who helped Pearl, whom he calls "the light of our life," and help others in similar situations.
"I'm so grateful. It was tough," Carter says. "Maybe a little story like what happened with our daughter could help someone else feel a little better if it did happen to them. You can make it through. Maybe that's a silver lining."
The singer admits that he and his wife thought they were done with children after Odin and Saoirse, but were "blindsided" when Lauren became pregnant, calling Pearl a "miracle" because the couple already had a girl's name picked out.
Months later, Carter is now learning how to juggle his three little ones, revealing that it's been difficult to split his time between them all.
"The hardest part is delegating time to each individual child. Because you've got to be there for them and you got to make sure you carve out time for all of them," he shares. "Saoirse is 2 years old, so there are times when I'll pick up the baby and she's like, put the baby down. She's like, 'Down, down.' "
courtesy Nick Carter Lauren, Odin, Nick and Saoirse Carter
But Carter says fatherhood is running smoothly with Pearl being "a little bit more independent" since learning how to crawl, adding, "She's a little bit past that newborn baby stage, which is becoming a little bit easier to handle."
As the holiday season arrives, Carter — who's hosting a virtual dinner and sing-along on Dec. 16 titled Home 4 the Holidays, which will benefit Cure 4 the Kids Foundation — is looking forward to creating traditions with his little ones.
The "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" singer says he's looking forward to "creating memories" by decorating the Christmas tree and watching holiday movies together before things change when they're on the road next year.