Her little girl got the hang of saying “dada” straight away, but when it took forever for her to say that other special word, the actress worried a little!
Remember the first time your child looked at you and said “Mama”? Katherine Heigl was waiting and waiting for her adorable daughter, Naleigh, to say it to her. The 22-month-old was quick to learn “dada” (she’s a total daddy’s girl, gravitating toward Katherine’s husband, Josh Kelley, 30), but when it came to addressing Katherine, Naleigh got a little confused!
“Naleigh learned with me that the word ‘Mama’ was synonymous with kisses,” the 31-year-old actress tells InStyle magazine. “So when she first started saying, ‘Mama,’ she would also make a little kiss sound … She started saying it maybe a month or two ago. I would come into the room and she’d go, ‘Mama!’ And it was like, Thank God.”
At first, though, for Naleigh it was all about her dad. “The first thing she said was, ‘Dada,’ and then she’d call everybody else she loved ‘Dada,’” she says. “She actually attached to Josh much faster.”
While the couple hasn’t ruled out having biological children of their own, Katherine — whose older sister, Margaret Leigh, was also adopted from Korea — had long ago made the decision to adopt a child.
“Josh and I had been talking about adopting for a year before it actually happened,” she explains. “I had spoken to him about it before we got engaged because I wanted to be sure we were on the same page — not everybody feels the way I do about adoption. I don’t know why it was so important for me to do it before we had biological children, but I felt like I had been waiting for and dreaming about Naleigh for a long time.”