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Today’s Jenna Bush Hager breaks down in tears over feelings of ‘guilt’ for her co-star

 The Today with Jenna and Hoda host was visibly upset

Jenna Bush Hager on the Today Show with Hoda Kotb
Faye James
Faye JamesSenior Editor
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In a moving and raw segment on "Today with Hoda and Jenna," Jenna Bush Hager, expressed feelings of guilt about not being there for her co-star, Hoda Kotb, during a recent family crisis. 

Hoda had taken a short break from the show earlier this year when her youngest daughter, Hope, was hospitalized.

Speaking candidly about the importance of honesty, Jenna became visibly emotional as she confessed: "When Hoda's daughter wasn't feeling well, I just wasn't there for her the way I wanted to be. 

Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager on the Today Show© Getty
Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager

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“And I didn't know how to be. And I felt terrible about it. But I didn't know what to do. So I just said it. I said, 'I feel like I haven't been there for you.'"

Hoda responded with grace and empathy, saying: "I still remember when you said that to me. And it was, first of all, one of the most beautiful statements—you've had so many beautiful statements—and it touched me deeply. And it meant everything to me that you said that."

Hoda's daughter was hospitalized
Hoda's daughter was hospitalized

Hoda took some time off from the Today show in February when Hope was admitted to the hospital. Recounting a poignant moment at 3 a.m. in a lonely hospital room, she spoke about the solace provided by a nurse who came in and silently comforted her.

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"I was just in this room in a chair by myself, thinking about, like, what's going on here," the 51-year-old presenter shared. 

Hoda revealed she felt helpless when her daughter was hospitalized
Hoda revealed she felt helpless when her daughter was hospitalized

"And this nurse walked in, put her hand on my back, didn't even say anything, just sat there for a minute. I was like, 'Oh my God.' I could feel myself, like, right at the time."

Jenna lovingly referred to the nurse as "like an angel."

Jenna and Hoda opened up
Jenna and Hoda opened up

 Hoda concurred, adding that nursing is not just about medical tasks like administering IVs and tests, but also about emotional understanding and support.

She fondly recalled how the nurses created a makeshift bath for Hope when she requested one, despite the child being limited to sponge baths. 

"I remember they got this little plastic thing, and they put it in the shower and put Hope in it," she reminisced. "That tiny thing, but it was everything at the time. It was beautiful."

Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb look concerned on Today© NBC
Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb look concerned on Today

Hoda has yet to reveal the details of Hope's health scare but had previously described the experience as "really scary."

MORE: Jenna Bush Hager on weird wedding night advice mom Laura Bush gave her

 In April, she opened up, saying: “You know my daughter Hope had a health scare but she’s getting better. I think I didn’t realize how much is already in you when it comes to your strength. 

“To watch her go through a difficult time at just 3 years old is really tough for any parent because you’re helpless. But I think you realize just how incredibly resilient and strong she is. She’s teaching me, which is so funny.”

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