Abby Huntsman Returns from Maternity Leave After Welcoming Twins, Talks Daughter's Time in NICU
"I have such an appreciation now for parents who are still sitting in the NICU, still hoping their baby is going to be okay," Abby Huntsman said Tuesday
The new mom of three was in attendance for the ABC talk series’ season premiere on Tuesday, with two very special guests in tow: Her twins Ruby Kate and William Jeffrey, who turn 3 months old on Thursday.
“Off to work with mom!” she captioned a cute snapshot of the babies on her Instagram Story, snuggled into their strollers, before they made their big debut on-air as “season 23’s first guests.”
“It feels so good to be back. I can see my feet. I can breathe!” Huntsman, 33, joked to her co-hosts. “I’m a new person since the last person [who] sat here.”
The television journalist said that on top of her joy over becoming a mother for the second time (she and husband Jeffrey Livingston are also parents to 21-month-old daughter Isabel Grace), she feels “very lucky” after Ruby “ended up in the NICU for two weeks” due to the fact that her lungs were still developing.
“The nurses and doctors, as you know, you feel so, so thankful for them. I was going back and forth for two weeks to feed William at home, feed Ruby in the NICU,” Huntsman recalled. “I have such an appreciation now for parents who are still sitting in the NICU, still hoping their baby is going to be okay. But the babies are doing wonderful and life is hectic. I drink a lot of coffee and a lot of wine. … It was a busy summer!”
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Huntsman went on to joke new big sister Isabel has been “a nightmare” since her siblings’ arrival, explaining, “I love her to death, but she already asked if we can put them in the microwave. She opened the microwave and said, “Babies, babies.’ ”
“We went to the mall with all three kids … and someone came up and said, ‘We’ve been watching you from afar. Can we buy you a drink?’ ” Huntsman continued.
She also took a moment to recognize, in honor of Labor Day, the difficulty of parenting, calling it “the hardest job that anyone does because it teaches you such patience.”
“Yesterday, my husband and I were home all day. By the end of the day, I looked at him and we hadn’t said a word to each other,” Huntsman shared. “We’ll get through it. This is just a crazy time. And we’re so, so lucky.”
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PEOPLE confirmed the twins’ birth exclusively, one day after their June 5 arrival in New York City.
“Ruby came first at 5 lbs., 12 oz. She is a sweet, very calm baby. William is 5 lbs., 4 oz., and came into the world wide-eyed and ready to raise havoc,” Huntsman joked at the time. “Both babies are long like their parents — 19 inches.”
The new mother of three’s father Jon Huntsman, the U.S. Ambassador to Russia, and her mother Mary Kaye came in from Moscow for the special delivery.