Today show host Hoda Kotb has written the children’s book I’ve Loved You Since Forever. The book was inspired by her one-year-old daughter, Haley Joy. During her adoption journey, she would jot down the words of the title in her journal. Kotb opened up about waiting in adoption. She described it by saying, “I know you’re sleeping under the same moon and stars as me, and one day we’ll find each other.”
In addition to the book’s release this month, a song version has been performed by singer Kelly Clarkson. The song is available on iTunes and Amazon. NBCUniversal is donating all of the proceeds from downloads to Helpusadopt.org. It’s a nonprofit organization that provides grants to families to aid in the cost of adoption.
Clarkson and Kotb have been friends for a long time. Though the pair thought the book would make a great song, Kotb didn’t know how it would be possible. She recalled, “I just thought there was no way she was going to be able to. I thought there weren’t enough words. You know when you’re like, ‘That can’t work, that’ll never work.’ And she was like, “Oh yes it will.”
When the song was being recorded at Atlantic Records, Kotb was not only able to watch, Kelly insisted she participate, for Haley’s sake. She gave Kotb a rattle to shake during the song. Kelly said, “I made it more like a lullaby, like James Taylor, like there’s some Patty Griffin in it. I hope we do it justice.”
Kotb’s battle with breast cancer a decade ago left her unable to conceive. In February 2017, at age 52, she announced the adoption of her baby girl on NBC’s morning show via telephone to her viewers and colleagues. She said, “It’s one of those things where you thing you’ve done it all, you think you’ve felt it all, but I just didn’t know this kind of love existed.” Kotb reads her book to Haley and plays the song for her every day. She hopes through her unconditional love Haley will always know how special she is.