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Michelle Obama reacts to Meghan Markle's tell-all interview with Oprah

In a discussion with Jenna Bush Hager, the former first lady said she's hoping the royals' disputes can be a "teachable moment."
/ Source: TODAY

Michelle Obama is sharing her thoughts on Oprah Winfrey's explosive interview with Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, as someone who has experienced racism and is no stranger to the public eye.

The former first lady, 57, sat down with TODAY's Jenna Bush Hager, who asked Obama about the loneliness she has said she felt at times in the White House. "I wonder, when you watched Meghan Markle speak out the other night, what went through your mind?" Jenna said.

"Public service, it's a bright, sharp, hot spotlight, and most people don't understand it, and nor should they," Obama said. "The thing that I always keep in mind is that none of this is about us in public service. It's about the people that we serve.

"I always try to push the light back out and focus it on the folks that we are actually here to serve."

Jenna went on to ask Obama about the issue of race. Meghan, who is half Black, had told Winfrey that, prior to the birth of her son, Archie, there were "concerns and conversations" among members of the royal family about how dark his skin might be.

"I feel like that was heartbreaking to hear, that she felt like she was in her own family — her own family thought differently of her," Jenna said.

Obama replied, "As I said before, race isn't a new construct in this world for people of color, and so it wasn't a complete surprise to hear her feelings and to have them articulated.

"I think the thing that I hope for, and the thing I think about, is that this, first and foremost, is a family. I pray for forgiveness and healing for them so that they can use this as a teachable moment for us all."

During her conversation with Jenna, Obama also opened up about her latest project, "Waffles and Mochi," an educational show for children on Netflix, which builds on her passion for teaching young people about healthy eating.

"It's my favorite project," Obama told Jenna. "You have followed us and supported a lot of the work that we've done, and I love it all, but this project, it brings it all full circle because it brings me back to kids and nutrition.

"This isn't just a kid show. It's a family show, and that's what drew me to it."

In conjunction with the series, Obama has also teamed up with Partnership for a Healthier America for a new campaign, "Pass the Love with Waffles and Mochi," which will provide at-home recipes and activities, and is planning to raise funds to distribute 1 million meals to families in need across the country.

See Obama's full interview with Jenna when it airs Tuesday morning on TODAY.