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What is wrong with Hoda Kotb's daughter? - All we know

The Today host's family was rocked when Hope was hospitalized last year


Hoda Kotb on Today Show© NBC
Hannah Hargrave
US Deputy Editor
Updated: March 6, 2024
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It's been a rollercoaster year for Hoda Kotb, 59, after her youngest daughter, Hope, four, was hospitalized with a mystery condition last February.

At the time, the Emmy Award-winning journalist took a break from her co-hosting duties on "Today with Hoda & Jenna" when her child's health complications escalated.

On her return, she revealed that Hope was in the ICU  and the hospital. "My youngest, Hope, was in the ICU for a few days and in the hospital for a little more than a week," Kotb said during the March 6 episode. "I'm so grateful she's home. She is back home. I was waiting for that day to come. And we are watching her closely. I'm just so happy."

But what caused the little girl to fall ill and how is she doing now?

WATCH: Hoda Kotb close to tears as she discusses daughter's health scare

What Hoda Kotb has said about her daughter's illness

Talking to Southern Living's “Biscuits & Jam” podcast on April 25, Hoda said: "She’s getting better," admitting that seeing her daughter endure a “difficult time” at such a young age was challenging, as she felt “helpless.”

Hoda also shared a touching moment from Hope's hospital stay, where her daughter confidently stated: “I think God put me here to teach people things.”

hoda kotb and daughters© Instagram
Hoda called her daughter's hospitalization "scary"

In a more recent interview with People magazine, Hoda emotionally confessed:  "We had a scary stretch. Any parent who's been through a scary thing with their child understands. It's like you just can't believe that your child's sick. You can't believe that there's nothing you can do. 

"You can't believe that no matter what you do, you can’t will it away or protect her, or all the things that we’re supposed to be doing as parents. And it's a position I’ve never found myself in."

Why Hoda won't reveal what is wrong with her daughter

The star has suggested Hope's illness is an ongoing condition and previously spoke at the Webby Awards in New York and said: "Hope's doing much better, much better. I think it's going to be a longer road, but she is doing great."  

Hoda co parents her daughters with ex Joel
Hoda hasn't revealed what is wrong with Hope

But she won't divulge what Hope's condition is and told People that this is due to her daughter's young age. That being said, she confessed they're having to monitor her all the time and "things have stabilized".

She is incredibly proud of how Hope has handled the situation and hopes it will make her stronger in the long-run, telling People: 

"I look at her, and I think, 'Wow, you blossomed into this incredible kid who is so resilient and well-equipped for her whole life despite this stuff that has happened to her,'" Hoda described tearfully. "She just demonstrates that when you have whatever she has inside of her, this will, this fight, this everything she can withstand anything. This child is going to have the easiest adulthood because she’s had a tough go of it early on."

hoda kotb children fiance joel© Photo: Instagram
Hoda has praised Joel for his support

How Hoda's other daughter is helping her sibling

Hoda is also a mom to Haley, seven, who has had to watch her little sister go through this challenging time and it hasn't been easy for her. 

"All the attention is on Hope and Haley wonders too, like, I'm here," Hoda told her co-host, Jenna Bush Hager on air in March. "Here I am. See me. I need someone to carry me. Do what you're doing for Hope, you know? I feel like there is a lot of that."

Hoda Kotb shares a glimpse of Christmas decorations inside her Manhattan home with two daughters© Instagram
Hoda's other daughter is finding it tough too

But she's trying to see it in a positive light. "It's weird, but I feel like I got most of my resilience in life because of that," she added. "You didn't expect to always be seen and heard."

Hoda is also trying to protect her children from "grown-up worry" and added: "I’m not going to put my worry on her. It's too much for a kid to carry," 

Who is the father of Hoda Kotb's children?

Although they are no longer a couple, Hoda and her ex-fiance, Joel Schiffman, successfully co-parent their two children. They adopted both girls together but their relationship came to and end in January 2022, when they decided that they were better as friends. 

Hoda Kotb with daughter and ex joel schiffman© Instagram
Hoda and Joel are co-parenting their children together

Hoda has praised Joel for going on her adoption journey with her. Speaking to People, Hoda said: "I looked him in the eye and I said, 'I would like to explore adoption with you.' And there was like a second there, I was like, 'This is the end of a relationship or the beginning of a family.'

"My heart was pounding and he just looked at me and he said, 'I don't need a week.' [to think about it]. At that moment, I fell on his chest and was sobbing."

Thankfully Joel has been there whole-heartedly as Hope's dad and Hoda is thankful she can lean on him for support as well as the rest of her loved ones as they navigate Hope's future. 

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