Eva Mendes on giving birth the same week as her brother's funeral service: It was 'beyond heartbreaking'

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Eva Mendes Flaunts Her Stunning Post-Baby Body at First Public Appearance Since Giving Birth

It's been an emotional year for Eva Mendes to say the least.

The 42-year-old actress welcomed her second daughter with Ryan Gosling in May, Amada Lee Gosling, and also mourned the death of her older brother, Carlos Mendez, just a month earlier. Mendez died in April after battling throat cancer, and was just 53 years old. The notoriously private mother of two opens up for the first time about the two significant life events in an interview with Latina.

"Losing my brother brought our family closer, and we were already close to begin with," Mendes tells the magazine. "So, to just see everybody be there for one another and show up, I feel so lucky to have them. And then they were there for me when Amada was born. We had a funeral service for him and that same week I had the baby. So it was really, really intense and obviously beyond heartbreaking, but also kind of beautiful."

WATCH: Eva Mendes and Family Remember 'Amazing' Brother Juan Carlos After He Dies of Throat Cancer at 53

"And being totally honest, I don't feel like I've really processed that yet," she adds.

Photos of Mendes and Gosling:

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TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 07: Actors (L-R) Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling attend 'The Place Beyond The Pines' premiere during the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival at Princess of Wales Theatre on September 7, 2012 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Sonia Recchia/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 18: Eva Mendes seen filming a commercial on February 18, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Charles Bladen/GC Images)
Director Ryan Gosling poses during a photo call for Lost River at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Eva Mendes arrives at the "On The Road" gala screening as part of AFI Fest on Saturday, November 3, 2012, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 22: Russell Crowe, Jack Kilmer and Ryan Gosling are seen on the set of 'The Nice Guys' on January 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 22: Russell Crowe, Jack Kilmer and Ryan Gosling are seen on the set of 'The Nice Guys' on January 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 22: Ryan Gosling is seen on the set of 'The Nice Guys' on January 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 22: Ryan Gosling is seen on the set of 'The Nice Guys' on January 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 22: Russell Crowe, Jack Kilmer and Ryan Gosling are seen on the set of 'The Nice Guys' on January 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 22: Russell Crowe, Jack Kilmer and Ryan Gosling are seen on the set of 'The Nice Guys' on January 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
Ryan Gosling is seen at LAX airport, 15 November 2014. 15 November 2014. Vantage News/IPx
From left, director Ryan Gosling and actress Christina Hendricks of the film Lost River and Geoffrey Arend arrive for the screening of Two Days, One Night (Deux jours, une nuit) at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
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LOS ANGELES - SEP 27: Ryan Gosling arrives to the "The Ides of March" Los Angeles Premiere on September 27,2011 in Beverly Hills, CA
Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling at the 12th Annual Critics' Choice Awards. Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica, CA. 01-12-07
CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 24: Sandra Bullock and Ryan Gosling attend the 'Murder by numbers' Premiere at the Grand Theatre Lumiere during the 55th Cannes film festival on May 24, 2002 in Cannes, France
Ryan Gosling and Donna Gosling attend the LA premiere of "Gangster Squad" at Grauman's Chinese Theater on Monday, Jan. 7, 2013, in Los Angeles. (Photo by John Shearer/Invision/AP)
From left, actor Josh Brolin, actress Emma Stone, and actor Ryan Gosling from the cast of "Gangster Squad," pose for a portrait at the Four Seasons Hotel on Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by John Shearer/Invision/AP)
Director, writer, and cast member George Clooney, right, and cast member Ryan Gosling pose together at the premiere of "The Ides of March", in Beverly Hills, Calif., Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2011. "The Ides of March" opens in theaters Oct. 7, 2011. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
This film image released by Focus Features shows Ryan Gosling in "The Place Beyond the Pines." (AP Photo/Focus Features, Atsushi Nishijima)
This film image released by Focus Features shows Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes in "The Place Beyond the Pines." (AP Photo/Focus Features)
Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone arrive at the "Crazy Stupid Love" premiere in New York, Tuesday, July 19, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes)
Steve Carell, left, and Ryan Gosling arrive at the "Crazy Stupid Love" premiere in New York, Tuesday, July 19, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 07: Actors Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling attend 'The Place Beyond The Pines' premiere during the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival at Princess of Wales Theatre on September 7, 2012 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Sonia Recchia/Getty Images)
Director Ryan Gosling poses during a photo call for Lost River at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES 2012 Focus Features film with Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes
CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 20: (L-R) Actors Reda Kateb, Ryan Gosling, Christina Hendricks and Geoffrey Arend attend the 'Lost River' premiere during the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 20, 2014 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Foc Kan/FilmMagic)
Eva Mendes arrives at the Spike TV Guys Choice Awards on Saturday, June 4, 2011, in Culver City, Calif. (AP Photo/Dan Steinberg)
Actress Eva Mendes attends the premiere party for Focus Features' "The Place Beyond The Pines" at The Bowery Hotel on Thursday March 28, 2013 in New York. (Photo: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
Eva Mendes arrives at The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Tribute honoring her in Beverly Hills, Calif., Wednesday, May 4, 2011. Loren's life and career will be celebrated by friends and colleagues. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Actress Eva Mendes attends the premiere of "Last Night" during the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival on Monday, April 25, 2011, in New York. (AP Photo/Peter Kramer)
Actress Eva Mendes poses on the red carpet as she arrives to attend the screening of the movie "La petit Mouchoirs" during the Rome Film Festival at Rome's Auditorium, Friday, Oct. 29, 2010. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
BLACK AND WHITE VERSION Canadian actor Ryan Gosling poses as he arrives for the screening of the film 'Lost River' at the 67th edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France, on May 20, 2014. AFP PHOTO / VALERY HACHE (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)
This film image released by Focus Features shows Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes in "The Place Beyond the Pines." (AP Photo/Focus Features)
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The Place Beyond the Pines actress talks about baby Amada for the first time, explaining why she and longtime love Ryan Gosling decided to re-use the unique name. The couple named their first child Esmeralda Amada, and Mendes' grandmother is also named Amada.

"We had a few names picked out for our new baby, and when she was born, we didn't feel like those names were her," she explains. "We came up with a few more, even that morning, and tried them out. We were like, 'What about Viviana?' But we just kept going back to Amada. In true Latin fashion, we reuse names all the time."

"I actually told Ryan, 'This is common in Latin culture, so it wouldn't be crazy,'" she continues. "So we went with Amada because it was something we kept going back to. And it was an emotional time with the passing of my brother. We thought how beautiful to go with what made us emotional and with what felt like her. When we looked at her, we thought, 'Aww, Amadita.'"

Although Mendes calls having two girls "a lot," she is clearly loving her role as mom.

The Miami-born actress says she's definitely wants 1-year-old Esmeralda and 3-month-old Amada to grow up with a sense of Cuban culture.

"We're constantly playing Cuban music. I speak to them in Spanish, and my mom speaks to Esmeralda in Spanish," she says about passing down her heritage to her two kids. "Well, now she speaks to both of them in Spanish. Any time I have an opportunity to introduce her or them -- I have to say 'them' now, though my newborn just sleeps all the time -- to my culture, whether it's through music, or through food, I do. That is a main priority, for sure."

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WATCH: EXCLUSIVE PICS -- Ryan Gosling Celebrates Eva Mendes' 42nd Bday With Luxury Getaway, Saves a Dog in the Process

In May, 35-year-old Gosling calling living with Mendes and his two daughters "heaven."

"It's like walking through a field of flowers every day. I live with angels," he said during his appearance on Good Morning America.

Watch below:

Ryan Gosling Calls Eva Mendes and Their Two Daughters His 'Angels'


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