Birth has a track record for upending plans — whether baby arrives too soon or watches that due date come and go. But an impending delivery doesn’t mean a pregnant person has to press pause on all their dreams, as evidenced by the American Idol audition of Haley Slaton.
The 23-year-old Cedar Rapids, Iowa native was five and a half months pregnant at the time of her audition that aired Sunday night.
After turning to reveal an unmistakable baby bump for the judges, Katy Perry blinked back in disbelief, saying, “If you go forward, you’ll have a baby. On the show.”
“Yes,” Slaton responded with sunny determination. She began her audition by singing Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb.” Judges Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie were impressed, but remained uncertain. Perry asked Slaton to hit a high note, raising a fist in triumph on her third attempt.
“The baby is close to the lungs, if I can remember,” said Richie, “so holding a note may be quite difficult at certain times.”
Perry concurred, “I had to drop everything down about a half step, singing [while pregnant].”
“I am worried. It’s a lot,” added Perry. “We’re not sure.”
Perry then invited Slaton to sing her next song, Adele’s “One and Only,” imploring her to “fight for it,” and shouting “Come on, Haley” mid-song.
The judges were swayed by this second performance and she was given a ticket to Hollywood.
“Just being a mom shouldn’t stop you from following your dreams,” Slaton said in her intro package.
We may not yet know how she fared in the rest of the competition, but Slaton’s participation in the show has already been life-changing.
While waiting in line for auditions, Slaton met Jordan Myles. The two quickly fell for each other, married in December and are now parents to 2-month-old son Jaelyn Amir. Myles posted a photo to Instagram Feb. 7 documenting the baby’s arrival.
“We got married pretty quick,” Slaton told Iowa newspaper The Gazette. “We just knew. We started right off the bat talking to each other, and it ended up being an everyday thing. I was already pregnant, and he stepped up to be a father, and I couldn’t thank him enough for that.”
“We’re very in love, we’re very happy that we met, and I feel like another reason why I was on the show was to meet him,” Slaton added.
Myles also posted a photo from his own American Idol auditions, hinting at his upcoming appearance this season.
“I just really want to do this for my son and give him a really good life,” Slaton said in the intro video to her audition. “I really want to show him to never stop chasing his dreams,” she continued. “Mommy went and chased hers.”