“Today” show host Hoda Kotb revealed in February that she had secretly adopted a daughter, and now she’s talking about how she did it.
In a new interview with E! News, the new mother dished about the adoption process and how she made sure to keep it under wraps until it was finalized.
“I started the application process in the fall, and they said, ‘We can’t make any promises. We wish you good luck. Wait wisely,’” Kotb told E! “I lived my life, but in my journal every night I scribbled ‘Please, God, if you can …’”
Kotb was overjoyed when her wish came true on Valentine’s Day but said she trusted only a few close family members and co-host Kathie Lee Gifford with the news before going public.
She described the moment when she found out about the finalization of the adoption.
“I’m in my office, and I’m FaceTiming somebody for some story about God only knows what. My phone has the word ‘project’ on it as a contact, and I use the word ‘project’ so I wouldn’t slip up and say ‘adoption’ because I was trying to keep it very private. Kath, my family and a couple (of) friends knew,” she told E!. “I saw the word ‘project,’ and I stopped the FaceTime, and I stopped everything. I took out a yellow pad and I wrote, ‘11:54 a.m.’ This is the moment it all changed.
“The woman on the other end said, ‘She’s here,’ and that was it.”
Kotb, who temporarily left the “Today” show while she spent a month at home with her new bundle of joy, said that when baby items would arrive to her apartment, she told the doorman that she was hosting a baby shower.
“It’s a crib. Yay, it’s a rocker. Yay, Pampers arrived,” she joked. “There was a point when the cat had to be brought out of the bag, and that’s when I revealed (the news) here on the show.”
Kotb returned to “Today” this week after taking maternity leave to bond with her new baby. She was welcomed back by fans and fellow anchors. The day was emotional for the TV veteran.
“I’m feeling great. I don’t think I’ve ever been this happy,” she said through joyful tears.