We’d like to apologize to your eye makeup in advance.
Stacy and Frank Parrado thought they were sitting down to talk about the process of adoption with Hoda Kotb during a recent appearance on Today. The New Jersey couple had no idea that Kotb, who became a first-time parent herself last year through adoption, had a life-changing surprise in store.
The Parrados were in their 20s when they got married 10 years ago. Like many couples, they assumed they’d have kids eventually—after a few years of just the two of them. But when they failed to get pregnant five years ago, the Parrados turned to a fertility specialist. That’s when they learned about complications from Frank's childhood cancer treatments.
“It was a curveball we thought wasn't going to be there because I was 6 years old at the time,” Frank told Kotb. “They just said sometimes, given the chemo, it just has those long-term effects, so it took us for a loop.”
The couple was devastated. “I actually felt like I wished it was me, not him, because I knew it hurt him really bad,” Stacy recalled.
After some time spent absorbing the news, they decided to pursue adoption. It seemed like a natural next step given that Stacy’s mother and aunt were both adopted.
So they did the paperwork, went through background checks and home visits, and eventually they were approved. All they could do was wait, and that was the hardest part.
“There’s good days and there's bad days. There are days when you wonder how much further you can go,” Frank told Kotb, who adopted her daughter, Haley Joy on Valentine’s Day of last year. “We push each other through those days.”
WATCH Hoda Kotb Wrote A Children's Book Inspired by Daughter Haley Joy:
And that’s when Kotb surprised them with the words they feared they’d never hear: “I think the day is today.” She revealed that they had been matched. They’d soon be bringing home a baby girl.
A week later, the Parrados brought home their daughter, Addison Emily. “We just pray that she has a life filled with happiness and good health,” Frank said. “We know she'll have a lot of love around her.”
Watch the emotional video above. Trust us: you’ll want some tissues for this one.