Though Sasha and Malia Obama are currently pursuing individual goals in Los Angeles, they continue to remain under one roof. In a Monday interview with Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager on the Today show, former first lady Michelle Obama said that her two daughters are housemates in “The City of Angels”.
Michelle, who was on the show to promote her new book, “The Light We Carry”, jokingly spoke about the reception she and her husband Barack received when their daughters invited them to their abode for cocktails.
“We were going to take them to dinner, and they said, ‘Why don’t you come over to our spot for cocktails?’ And we were like, ‘OK let’s see what this is going to be like’. The martinis were a little weak. I don’t think they really knew what it was,” the 58-year-old recalled.
Michelle also jokingly said she was taken aback when Sasha and Malia told them to put their drinks on a coaster. “I’m like, ‘You never used a coaster in my house.’ So now when it’s your stuff, you want to take care of it?” she recalled.
The Obama sisters are in California for different reasons. Malia, 24, is pursuing a career in television while 21-year-old Malia is a student at the University of Southern California. And though Michelle said she was happy with the close bond that her daughters share, she revealed that wasn’t the case at a certain point.
“The thing that I love the most is that those two girls are each other’s best friends,” Michelle said. “There was a period of time when they couldn’t stand each other, and I said, ‘You wait, you are going to wake up one day and you’re going to look over at that other person, and you’re going to know that you two share something very unique,’ especially given what they’ve been through.”
Michelle also said that Sasha and Malia being in a place where “they’re one another’s support systems” and have “got each other’s backs” is “the thing that a mother would want.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Michelle said that though she had several engagements during her time as the first lady, her main priority was ensuring her children were properly raised. She said she took that cue from Toni Morrison.
“When I first came into the White House, when people asked me what my agenda was going to be, I said what I thought was not a controversial thing was that my first job is being ‘mom-in-chief,”’ she said. “If I couldn’t raise my children, make sure they got through that experience whole, how could I help anyone else?”
She added: “When times are tough, I try to focus on what I can control. Being a good mother to my girls was my first job, and then I can reach out and help every girl in the world. But my two had to be solid first.”
Morrison had been open about her regret of communicating with her children with “a critical eye.”
“What I have learned and she had learned is that kids are looking for that light,” said Michelle. “You want to greet them with your gladness because that’s what they want most in life.”