Two of our favorite celeb moms came together to talk about adoption, and it was magical.
Hoda Kotb, mom to 1-year-old Haley Joy, and Sandra Bullock, mom of Louis, age 8, and Laila, age 5, sat down to discuss Sandra’s latest movie, Ocean’s 8. But the conversation heavily focused on the moms’ shared experience: adopting a child.
Sandra told Hoda that her kids are what’s most important.
“Everything is about them being OK, being in school having what they need, their moments,” she said. “I need to be there for every single moment that they have.”
Sandra has been a longtime reigning queen of the box office, starring in some of our favorite movies such as Miss Congeniality, Hope Floats, Speech, Premonition, The Proposal, and The Blind Side. But today we rarely see or hear from her, and she’s smartly not on social media. Instead, her life’s purpose is singular, telling Hoda that she’s all about “my kids, my kids, my kids.”
What inspired Sandra to choose adoption? She shared that it was Hurricane Katrina.
“I knew,” she told Hoda. “Something in me told me my child was there.”
But her motherhood didn’t arrive overnight. She confessed that it was a long four-year wait until Louis became her son.
Louis, now 8 years old, was adopted from New Orleans as an infant. It was when he told his mom that he was going to have a sibling that Sandra pursued adopting again. Laila was adopted from foster care as a toddler, and she is now 5 years old.
Hoda tearfully told Sandra that she had asked herself, “Where is my family?” and “Did I miss my window? Am I too late?” When she learned Sandra had adopted Louis, Hoda Googled the story, and then reached out to Sandra for adoption advice.
And then, another miracle.
Hoda adopted her daughter Haley Joy in 2017 and has been outspoken about the miracle of adoption and the beauty of motherhood. Her bestselling children’s book, I’ve Loved You Since Forever, is an ode to Haley and their mother-daughter bond.
I remember the day Hoda Kotb surprised everyone with her announcement that she had adopted an infant girl. I was sitting on my sofa holding my own newly adopted daughter, my fourth child. Hoda’s joy brought me to tears as I watch her unveil to the world the beauty of adoption and the joy of new motherhood.
To many, adoption is mysterious. We are often asked why we didn’t have “our own” children or where our children’s “real parents” are. Society finds it hard to accept that love, not just biology, can create a family, and that parents who adopt are “real” and our children are “our own.”
But times are slowly changing, thankfully, and some of that change is due to women like Sandra and Hoda who are willing to speak up about their adoption experiences.
“You’re a forever parent the minute you accept the love of that child,” Sandra confessed to Hoda.
Bullock also shared that when it comes to being a parent, there “is no box.” Family is family and motherhood is motherhood.
Hoda teared up and told Sandra that their interview “was like therapy,” and that perhaps they needed Twinkies to cope with the emotional depth of their conversation.
Pass the Twinkies, ladies. We’re right there with you.