People

Michelle Obama pays tribute to her mother in emotional TV appearance: “I love you”

Posted by
Kayleigh Dray
Published

While in the shower, or on the daily commute, or lying in bed on a cosy Sunday morning, our minds often turn to what would happen if we won a major award (c’mon, don’t pretend you don’t do it too) – and what we would say in our acceptance speech.

It usually begins in the same way: “I want to dedicate this award to my mum/dad/notable family member…”

And, as it turns out, Michelle Obama – aka the First Lady of the United States of America – feels exactly the same way.



Everyone’s favourite FLOTUS made her final TV appearance on Wednesday’s episode of The Tonight Show, where she chatted with Jimmy Fallon about how she and President Obama feel about bidding goodbye to the White House.

“It’s nuts,” she said. “I feel like crying right now… I didn’t think it would be this emotional.”

Michelle Obama and Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show

Michelle Obama and Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show

Adding that the experience has been “surprisingly emotional” for the entire Obama family, Michelle went on to add that she’s been incredibly grateful to all those who have supported her and her husband during their eight years in the White House.

However there was one person in particular that she wanted to send a special shout-out to: her mother, Marian Shields Robinson.



“I couldn’t have done this without you, Mum,” said Michelle, turning to face the camera and looking visibly moved. “Just having a multigenerational existence really kept us grounded.”

She added: “I love you, Mum – and I’m proud of you. I’m proud of you because you represented this country so well, too.”

Michelle went on to thank her husband for “proving you’re not a lame duck, but my very own silver fox”.

And, in a sly dig at President-elect Donald Trump, she also penned a thank-you note to his upcoming inauguration day.

“Thank-you inauguration day, or, as I like to call it, ‘let’s move’.”



As 20 January quickly zooms towards us with all the frightening inevitability of a speeding freight train, the Obamas have begun to say their goodbyes to public office.

The president gave an emotional speech from Chicago, during which he reminded the citizens of America to do everything within their power to defend their democratic rights.

“I am asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about change – but in yours,” he told them.

“I am asking you to hold fast to that faith written into our founding documents; that idea whispered by slaves and abolitionists; that spirit sung by immigrants and homesteaders and those who marched for justice; that creed reaffirmed by those who planted flags from foreign battlefields to the surface of the moon; a creed at the core of every American whose story is not yet written.

“Yes we can. Yes we did. Yes we can.”

President Obama tears up during his farewell address

President Obama tears up during his farewell address

Just a few days before, Michelle had delivered her own farewell address at the 2017 School Counselor of the Year event in the East Room of the White House.

“Don’t ever let anyone make you feel like you don’t matter, or like you don’t have a place in our American story. You do,” she said.

“So, that’s my final message to young people as First Lady. It’s simple. I want our young people to know that they matter, that they belong. So don’t be afraid. Do you hear me, young people? Don’t be afraid. Be focused. Be determined. Be hopeful. Be empowered. Empower yourself with a good education.”

Images: Rex Pictures / Instagram

Topics

Share this article

Author

Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is editor of Stylist.co.uk, where she chases after rogue apostrophes and specialises in films, comic books, feminism and television. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends. 

Other people read

More from People

More from Kayleigh Dray