Welcoming a new member to the family is never a dull experience, but when Carson Daly and his wife, Siri, were gearing up for baby Goldie’s delivery, things were even more complicated than expected.
That’s because Siri went into labor in March, when New York was still the country’s epicenter for the coronavirus pandemic and when routine births were anything but routine in the Big Apple’s overburdened hospitals.
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“Well, having a baby in the state of New York during everything was pretty crazy,” Carson explained to his TODAY family when the anchors reunited in person for the first time since the pandemic began.
There was plenty of catching up to do — especially with the father of four, whose life has, as Hoda Kotb put it, “changed the most” during lockdown.
“I give all power to Siri,” Carson continued, recounting the event that earned him that distinction, saying that she “did such an incredible job. I felt so helpless dropping her off at the hospital in Long Island. She was in her mask and gloves, and she had her go bag.”
But what about him? Well, partners had to take a back seat of sorts during that time as hospitals mitigated the risks and navigated unusually high demand.
“It was like I was dropping my kid off at camp almost,” he recalled. “I just was kind of like, ‘Call me if you need me.’ I couldn't do anything. It was a helpless feeling, but (Siri) showed such fortitude.”
And while some hospitals required partners to stay away through the entire experience, Carson counted himself lucky to get to see the little girl he calls "Go Go" be born.
“I could only be there for the 20-minute delivery, and then they were like, ‘Get out,’” he said. “And they said, ‘There's COVID patients on this floor. We need to find a safe place for your wife and baby. So that needs to happen now, so bye-bye.’”
He said it “was just nuts” to be in the midst of it all, to get a firsthand glimpse of how everyone was hustling on the front lines of the pandemic when protective gear was still scarce.
“You forget that hospitals are like college campuses — there's so much administration,” he noted. “It's not just doctors and nurses. It's all the other stuff. … There's runners; there's so much assistance. And they all are there on the front line, too.”
When Savannah Guthrie asked, “Were you scared?” Carson didn’t hesitate to confirm that he was “every day.” And it wasn’t the kind of fear he could quickly shake off after everyone was back home.
“Hoping that this highly susceptible newborn child wouldn't wake up with (a) 103-degree fever. … Meanwhile, she's bringing in so much joy to your life,” he said. “So, there's this real high highs and low lows. And, you know, then you start drinking at 2:00 p.m.”
That last line earned him some sympathetic laughs.
Of course, this isn’t the first time Carson has opened up about that harrowing hospital experience. The day after Goldie was born, he raved about his “superhero” wife during a call to TODAY.
"Her heroism … she’s a superstar. She’s a superhero," Carson said at the time. "I wake up enamored by her and also the medical staff that we dealt with last night. The work that they’re doing on the front lines — you don’t actually believe it until you’re there and you can see it."