Saturday, October 16, 2010 / 3:17 am
Family, Adoption & Life As A Working Mom
With the theatrical release of "Life As We Know It" in Australia next week, the Melbourne and Victoria, Herald Sun newspaper, has published an interview with Katherine that took place at the international press junket for the movie in New York on September 26th.
Find out what Katie had to say about family, adoption and life as a working mom:
By Carmel Melouney
HOLLYWOOD'S newest romantic-comedy queen, Katherine Heigl, is feeling a bit too shiny.
"You don't mind if I powder my nose while we talk?" she asks as we sit down in a luxury hotel suite on Manhattan's Upper East Side. It's a humid day in New York, with rain pouring violently outside.
"I feel like - this humidity and this weather - it's just disgusting," she laughs, flashing a megawatt smile.
Dressed in jeans, over the knee black leather boots and a caramel cashmere jumper draped elegantly across her shoulders, the 31-year-old is angelic. Despite her concerns about humidity, her skin is porcelain perfect, her teeth impossibly white and her curls swept off her face in a chic up-do.
Heigl introduces herself as Katie and puffs away on an electric cigarette as she attempts to quit smoking. "I made it to 25 before I started smoking - I got so far and now I just wish I never knew anything about it," she says.
Heigl may not have power over her nicotine addiction, but she certainly has power within Hollywood and was able to recommend her friend Josh Duhamel as her co-star in her latest film "Life As We Know It".
"It's been awesome to have an opinion and feel that people care and they want to hear me out," she says. Heigl has done exceptionally well in making a successful transition from her television role in Grey's Anatomy to movies with 27 Dresses and Knocked Up.
Heigl's openness has allowed the world to watch as she became a mother in September 2009, when she and her husband, musician Josh Kelley, adopted a baby from Korea. They named their daughter Nancy Leigh, after the actor's mother Nancy and sister Leigh, which has been abbreviated to Naleigh.
"Naleigh was nine months when I became her mother, but I didn't know what a nine-month old was, what stage they were at and lots of children are different," Heigl says honestly.
"When Naleigh came to us it was just a whole new world for me so I was reading absolutely every single book I could get my hands on. I didn't even know what she'd be eating, would she be eating solid foods? Would I be giving her formula? I kept trying to ask the agency in Korea, what are they feeding her, but they don't really tell you those things, so I'd read all the books I could get my hands on, but its hilarious, I mean, within two days, you figure it out - that sort of thing, at least."
Heigl is also frank about the difficulty of adopting a child and would like to become an adoption advocate and help fund adoptions for other families. "Its lengthy, its expensive, and I think there's a lot of families that if financially could afford it would adopt or would consider adoption."
The actor has her own charity, the Jason Debus Heigl Foundation, named after her brother who was killed in an accident in 1986 at the age of 15. "Within the foundation I'd love another section devoted to adoption and children who need forever homes and helping to fund adoptions for people and helping to promote adoption. There are some great programs like Holt International, which is the organisation we went through, who has a fund to help finance adoptions which I'd like to contribute to because it is expensive."
"I have a good friend who said to me, 'Look Katie, I would love to adopt, I can't afford to, I need to get pregnant'. It is crazy expensive, for most people, and I think that's something worth trying to figure out."
Asked how difficult is it to juggle a Hollywood film schedule with new motherhood, Heigl answers: "It's probably no harder than any working mom's situation I would imagine because I think women - at least most of the women I've talked to - we have this genetic disposition to feel guilty about leaving our children to go to work. I watch my husband do it, not with ease but he's very practical about it and when he's with her he's with her fully and completely devoted and gives her all of his attention, but when he has to go to work he doesn't have that mother's guilt.
So that's what I am trying to balance right now - knowing right now that she was mad when I left and is she going to shun me when I get back because she's mad that I keep leaving to go to work? But she gets all of my attention when I'm not working and that's the best I can do."
As to exposing her daughter to fame, Heigl says she is working out how to traverse that. "Naleigh may have a problem with me when she grows up a little bit, because I tend to just be all in," she says. "I'm just that kind of person - I'll tell you pretty much everything there is to tell you about me. I don't seem to keep any secrets and I thought that I should keep her more private, but I have such a hard time in doing that because, of course, she is such a massive part of my life."
To read the full interview with Katherine, please visit The Herald Sun web site.