Just before Thomas Rhett took the stage at the “Today” show this morning, 18-month-old daughter Willa Gray stole the show before it even began.
The new dad and wife Lauren adopted Willa from Uganda and are expecting their own baby girl in August.
The couple sat down with hosts Matt Lauer and Hota Kotb and chatted about their long journey, “It’s crazy. It’s been me and Lauren for four years, so when you add a daughter to the mix, it makes life even crazier.”
But Willa is making great progress since being welcomed to her forever home on May 11, “I wouldn’t trade it for the world. It’s crazy how little Willa has adapted. It’s pretty amazing,” the happy dad continued.
YALL 😩🙌🏼😭💗 Our baby girl is hommmmeeeeee 🎈🇺🇸💙🇺🇸🎈 Thank you Jesus for bringing our family together on the same continent finally :) little cutie Willa Gray Akins came home yesterday after completely stealing our hearts in Uganda over a year ago & we're sooooo happy we just can't stand it 💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛💛 • • • **PARENTS OF THE YEAR: thank you mom & dad for bringing her home since this pregnant mama is officially grounded due to baby Akins #2 coming in August 😩💚💚 • • • **FRIEND OF THE YEAR: thank you sweet @kaileydickerson for capturing some of the most special moments for us & for traveling with me to Uganda and back😘💗💗 • • • ** our FRIENDS & our FAMILY OF THE CENTURY: y'all have walked through and prayed through every single moment of this adoption with us, were our ROCKS through it all, kept it a secret, and truly had faith & hope for us when we felt like we had none left. I could cry thinking about each one of you-y'all know who you are & we are beyond blessed with our community God has given us🙏🏼 we love y'all more than any words could come close to describing. I might just throw you all a giant party celebrating y'all 😭😭💪🏼🙌🏼😘😘😘😘 • • • BRB STILL FREAKING OUT OUR DAUGHTER IS HOME 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸😩🌈👼🏾💪🏼🎉🙏🏼😭🙌🏼💚🎈💗💗
The “Die A Happy Man” singer knew Willa would fit right in with their little family, “Lauren had this amazing glow about her and it just felt like she was already out daughter in a weird way. I just blurted out, ‘We should bring her home.'”
“When I met Willa, her story was pretty intense,” Lauren said of their little toddler. “All orphans have heart-wrenching stories, but it felt like this specific baby was ours. I think that the Lord knew what he was doing when he did not let us get pregnant.”
Kotb, who just adopted her own baby girl, couldn’t get enough of little Willa. Mom Lauren posted a picture to her Instagram of the adorable pair:
“It’s very weird to be called ‘Dad’ by a little human being,” Rhett finished. “But it is one of the coolest feelings in the world. Nothing beats that.”