January 19th, 2012
04:23 PM ET
When Katherine Heigl and husband Josh Kelley adopted daughter Naleigh in 2009, 33-year-old Heigl wasn't expecting to not bond with their new baby right away.
The "One for the Money" actress tells CNN that at first, Naleigh gravitated more toward her husband.
"[Josh] would just come into the room and make her giggle and make her laugh," Heigl recalls. "I would always think, 'Something's wrong, something's wrong. She doesn't like me, she doesn't want me.' So I think it is sort of a female thing."
Naleigh did eventually start to trust her new mom, although Heigl admits it took about a year "of us working on our relationship before she really trusted me," she says.
"You don't think of that when you are going through an adoption," Heigl continues. "I mean, she had spent nine months in someone else's arms. She was well cared for and loved in her foster home...[T]hat is who she knew and who she responded to, and then they shove her into my arms and I want that immediate [mother] and child thing and she is looking at me like, 'Who are you and why did you just steal me away from these people?'"
The bond between Naleigh and her husband, she goes on, "was effortless."
"[Josh] hadn't put any pressure on himself, he was just himself, where I was trying to be the perfect mother and everything she expected or thought she expected," Heigl says. "I learned a lot from him, actually. I started following his lead, [and] just had to let it go. And have enough perspective to know that this will come around, this child will come around."
As evidenced in the music video for Josh Kelley's musical tribute to his daughter, Naleigh certainly did. The music video for the song, titled "Naleigh Moon," was directed by the actress, who has said that she's also hoping to adopt again.
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