Jenna Bush Hager just wants to be called mom — no additional descriptor needed.
On May 10, she kicked off Today’s fourth hour with Hoda Kotb by opening up about her family. Jenna revealed that she had just watched her daughters Mila, 9, and Poppy, 6, perform in a recital that morning before going on air. The moment meant as much to her and is it did to her kids, who she shares with husband Henry Chase Hager.
“Poppy came up to me right afterward and gave me a big hug and goes ‘You made it,’” Jenna recalled. “It kind of broke my heart and simultaneously filled it, so I’m all good.” She admitted that although she “misses a lot” because of her work, she doesn’t let it affect her. Jenna then took this as an opportunity to talk about “divisive language” regarding mothers and their responsibilities inside or outside the home.
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“Let me go on a little rant,” she said on the Today show. “All of the terms that we use to separate women make mad. Like the ‘stay at home moms’ versus ‘working moms.’ Don’t divide us! We come together. Guess what? We all work! So, let’s just call us moms.”
Jenna continued: “Mom guilt, for example. Does anybody say dad guilt? I don’t think so! … Balance? Sorry but don’t ask me … Nobody asked my husband how balanced he is. If he feels balanced. They don’t ask men that. They just ask women so that women then feel bad. We’re not comparing ourselves anymore. We come together!”
After the NBC coanchor concluded her thoughts by giving Hoda a high five, Today fans rushed over to the show’s official Instagram to voice their support. “Yes!!!! 1 hundred million trillion percent!! You struck an absolute chord with me!! ❤️,” one person wrote in the comments section. “And I thought I couldn’t like @jennabhager anymore than I already do! I could watch a show solely made up of her ‘hot takes’ lol #sayit Jenna!! ❤️🔥👏,” another added. “YES! I was trying to balance it all and then I decided to just embrace it and find my own rhythm 😄 Thank you @jennabhager We all come together! 💝👏🏻,” a different fan said.
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Jenna has previously opened up about being a mother to three young kids while starring on the Today show. (Jenna and Henry also have a 2-year-old son named Hal.) Speaking to People in November 2019, the author elaborated on her feelings about “missing a lot” in her children’s daily lives.
“I try to focus on what I can do and what I do bring because I think if we beat ourselves up for everything we miss, then we’re not as happy of a parent as we can be,” she told the outlet. “Since Henry and I both have big jobs, I’m hoping that our kids realize the biggest job and the biggest priority is them.”
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