Priyanka Chopra on Choosing Surrogacy, Baby Malti’s First Days in the NICU, and Who She Resembles

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Hot off Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas’ daughter Malti Marie’s first birthday celebration earlier this month, Chopra is ready to talk in detail about the baby’s arrival and first months in the NICU. Chopra and Jonas welcomed their daughter via surrogate last January; she was premature, born a full trimester before her due date.

“I was in the OR [operating room] when she came out. She was so small, smaller than my hand,” Chopra revealed to British Vogue, holding out her palm for scale. “I saw what the intensive-care nurses do. They do God’s work. Nick and I were both standing there as they intubated her. I don’t know how they even found what they needed [in her tiny body] to intubate her.”

Malti spent three months in the NICU, with Jonas and Chopra visiting daily. “We spent every single day with her on my chest, on my husband’s chest,” Chopra said. “I didn’t know if she would make it or not.”

Chopra also addressed her choice to use a surrogate, explaining it was due to health issues she’d rather not share publicly. “I had medical complications, [so] this was a necessary step, and I’m so grateful I was in a position where I could do this,” she said. “Our surrogate was so generous, kind, lovely and funny, and she took care of this precious gift for us for six months.”

Regarding commenters on the internet inventing their own theories about her personal choices, Chopra said firmly, “You don’t know me. You don’t know what I’ve been through. And just because I don’t want to make my medical history, or my daughter’s, public doesn’t give you the right to make up whatever the reasons were.”

Malti luckily pulled through and has been home with her parents since last spring. The couple publicly revealed that Malti had been in the NICU in May around Mother’s Day.

While the couple hasn’t shown her face publicly, Chopra did divulge who their baby girl resembles most. “Most people say she looks like Nick. I don’t believe it,” she said with a laugh.

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Senior News and Strategy Editor

Alyssa Bailey is the senior news and strategy editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton). She previously held positions at InStyle and Cosmopolitan. When she’s not working, she loves running around Central Park, making people take #ootd pics of her, and exploring New York City.

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