“One of the things in my life I’ve always wanted was to be a mom. Sometimes in your life, things just don’t work out for whatever reason, so you say, ‘Well, I wasn’t meant to have that.’ But it was really hard to come to terms with it. People would say, ‘Oh, do you have kids?’ And I’d feel like, ‘Ouch.’ I knew inside it was supposed to be for me. One of the reasons was because I couldn’t have children. Finally I said to myself one day, ‘Why can’t I? Why not me?’ I had this ache in me that I couldn’t push away anymore. …I wake up sometimes and go, ‘Oh my God, I have a baby!’ But it feels totally real. I guess if you’ve been waiting this long for something, and you wish for it, pray for it, hope for it, wonder if it will ever be, and then it happens, nothing’s more real. Nothing. It’s one of those things where you think you’ve done it all, you think you’ve felt it all. But I just didn’t know that this kind of love existed.”
-Hoda Kotb, 52, who adopted newborn daughter Haley Joy after cancer left her unable to conceive, talks to People, 2017.