Priyanka Chopra is getting very candid about how challenging her daughter Malti’s life was during the first few months.
As you most likely know, the 40-year-old actress and her husband, Nick Jonas, welcomed their first child via surrogate in January 2022. While that was one of the happiest moments of their lives, it was one of the most difficult ones as well. The couple later revealed that their daughter Malti was born prematurely at only 27 weeks and spent more than 100 days in the neonatal intensive care unit or NICU. So, so sad.
And more than a year following the scary experience, Priyanka is now opening up some more about those early days of her little one’s life. In an interview with Today.com published on Thursday, the Quantico alum recalled that when she learned her child was coming earlier than expected, she completely shut down at the time:
“I remember [Nick] just held me by my shoulders, and I said, ‘Just tell me what to do, because I don’t know what to do.’ And he’s like, ‘Just get into the car with me.’ And we drove to the hospital. She was born, and from the moment she took her first breath to now, she’s never been without one of us, ever.”
While Priyanka was understandably terrified for Malti, she soon realized she “did not have the luxury to be scared or to be weak” while her daughter was fighting for her life in the NICU. For months, the momma remembered she and Nick dividing their time so someone was always with her — even if it was just to watch the nurses take care of her from the sidelines:
“I don’t think it was our test. I think it was her test. I realized very, very early that I did not have the luxury to be scared or to be weak, because she was scared and weak. And I had to be her strength as her mom. I needed to make her feel at every given moment that she’s not alone…that we’ve got her.”
Thankfully, Malti was able to go home with her parents after her rocky battle in the NICU for 110 days. Although Priyanka was able to breathe easier now that their little one was out of the hospital, her fears for the baby’s well-being did not ease up. She shared that it was difficult for her at first when Malti came home due to the absence of the NICU monitors:
“You know your child is alive, because you can see their heartbeat (on the monitor). I couldn’t sleep for days, because now suddenly she was home without a monitor. I used to put my ear on her chest. I would wake up every couple of minutes just to see if she was OK. For weeks, this went on.”
Heartbreaking. We cannot imagine how hard this transition must have been for both Priyanka and Nick, especially after having to watch their child in the NICU for so long. But now, it seems like they’re in a better place a year later after coming “so close to losing” their daughter several times. The Baywatch star touched on her sweet relationship with Malti in an interview with Elle on Thursday, sharing that her baby girl has “got me wrapped around her finger.” She added:
“I don’t even know how I’ll ever discipline her because I just don’t have it in me. I was so close to losing her so many times that she can get away with anything and I just want to see her happy. I want her to be the happiest. She’s a super smiley, happy baby, and that’s all my goal is — to see her joyous. Every time she smiles, it lights up my world, and that’s all I want to do.”
That is very sweet. Reactions, Perezcious readers? Let us know in the comments below.
[Image via Priyanka Chopra/Instagram]