Seinfeld star ‘crazy happy’ before devastating tragedy: ‘A complete nightmare’

Julia Louis-Dreyfus spoke about a simple act by her mother that comforted her at a time of profound loss.

Seinfeld star Julia Louis-Dreyfus has opened up about a “devastating” pregnancy loss when she was in her late 20s, describing it as a “complete nightmare”.

Speaking on the Wiser Than Me podcast, Louis-Dreyfus recalled the emotional impact the pregnancy loss had on her and husband Brad Hall.

“When I was about 28, I got pregnant for the first time and I was crazy happy,” she said.

“I got pregnant easily. I felt very fertile, very womanly.

“And then, quite late in the pregnancy, my husband Brad and I discovered that this little foetus was not going to live.

“So that was emotionally devastating as you can imagine, but it got worse because I developed an infection that landed me in the hospital,” the actress continued, calling the moment “a complete nightmare”.

Louis-Dreyfus said her mother Judith flew in to take care of her.

“After a couple of days, I had finally gotten out of the hospital and I came home to recuperate, but I wasn’t allowed to get up out of bed yet,” she recalled.

“But my mum cooked.

“She made this incredible cosy chilli in a cast iron skillet with cornbread on top in the pan.”

However, when her mum and husband walked in and set the tray at the foot of her bed, she couldn’t eat it.

“The smell of that cornbread and the chilli was so wonderful,” she said.

“It just filled the room and the whole house and my heart, really, because here’s the thing – I couldn’t eat.

“I wasn’t yet allowed to have solid food, but it didn’t matter.”

She described it as “the best meal ever” – even though she couldn’t enjoy it.

The Veep star said she always connected food and cooking with her mother, and with her family in general.

The simple act of her mother making the meal was “comforting” at a time of profound loss.

“This is one of my greatest memories around food, even though it sort of has an odd kicker,” she admitted.

Louis-Dreyfus’ pregnancy loss hasn’t been her only deeply personal blow over the years.

In 2017, the actress and comedian revealed she had been diagnosed with breast cancer.

“I’ve had a lot of personal challenges, losses, dear ones in my family, my own battle with cancer,” she told Entertainment Tonight.

She said working on Veep had helped her get through the diagnosis and didn’t know how she would have handled it “had I not had this really close intimate relationship with all of these people”.

“We linked arms and we tried to do the most joyful funny thing possible as a team,” she said of filming the show.

“It was like being on a sports team … and that was the most buoying thing, to constantly be coming back to.

“It gave me something to laser focus on during my illness, and I needed to laser focus (on something) beyond my illness, so it was a life saver.”

Louis-Dreyfus revealed in October 2018 that she was cancer free.

In a 2019 interview, she said going through six rounds of chemotherapy helped her work out what really mattered in her life.

She told Net-a-Porter’s magazine, PorterEdit: “(Cancer) finally crystallised my priorities, which didn’t really need that much crystallisation.

“But I would certainly say that I have an even deeper appreciation for the good stuff.

“That sounds corny, but it’s f true.”

Louis-Dreyfus and her husband have been married since 1987.

They have two sons – Henry, 30, and Charlie, 25.

Son Charlie is following in his parents’ footsteps as an actor, while Henry is a musician.