Sandra Bullock has filed for divorce from her husband, Jesse James, and is adopting a baby boy as a single parent.
“Yes, I have filed for divorce,” the 45-year-old Oscar-winning actress said in an interview with People magazine, posted Wednesday on its website. “I’m sad and I am scared.”
Bullock and James, 41, began the adoption process four years ago, the People article said, and brought 3 1/2-month-old Louis Bardo Bullock home in January but decided to keep the news to themselves until after the Academy Awards.
In the interview, Bullock said she is savoring her new maternal status.
“You wake up, you feed, you burp, you play, you do laundry,” she said. “I’m still in that stage where I’m just amazed with him and at life.”
“All I said when I met him was, ‘Oh, there you are.’ It was like he had always been a part of our lives.”
The baby, called Louie, is named after jazz great Louis Armstrong, who had particularly touched Bullock with his signature song, “What a Wonderful World,” she said. The child was born in New Orleans, a city where Bullock and James had both spent time after Katrina.
Bullock said she and James sought to pull no strings as they submitted to the typically time-consuming screening process, with no thoughts to the gender or background of the child they might receive.
“We somehow knew the right little person would come,” she said.
Bullock said she got the call that a baby might be available for adoption during what she described as “the media craziness of the awards season.” Deciding to shield Louis from that turmoil, she kept his arrival hidden from all but a few trusted associates and loved ones. Her life (and his) became an ongoing process of secrecy and diversion.
“Just the doctors’ visits were filled with decoys and dark cars,” she said. “People that I had worked with for years couldn’t understand why I wouldn’t let them into my house for (Oscar ceremony gown) fittings.”
James and Bullock separated in March after five years of marriage, following reports that the celebrity motorcycle builder and reality-TV star had been unfaithful.
Bullock won the Oscar for best actress for her role in the blockbuster hit “The Blind Side,” on March 7. Within days of her win, the cheating allegations became public and Bullock went into seclusion.
It was a precipitous fall from the romance resonating between them at the Golden Globes in January. Accepting her best actress award, Bullock told James from the stage, her voice cracking with emotion: “There’s no surprise that my work got better when I met you. Because, I never knew what it felt like for someone to have my back.”
After the revelations, James publicly apologized to Bullock and his children, Sunny, 6; Jesse Jr., 12; and Chandler, 15. He recently returned home after a 30-day stay in a treatment facility where he sought help for “personal issues,” the People story said.
In a statement posted on the People website, James called Bullock “the love of my life, but considering the pain and devastation I have caused her, it would be selfish to not let her go.”
He said, “The love I have for Louis cannot be put to words. Not having him around to love and to hold has left a huge hole in my heart.”
He vowed to overcome an unspecified addiction that he said has taken from him “two of the things I love the most in life.”
When asked about whether James had cheated, Bullock said she “had no idea about anything.”
“I did the only thing I could do, and that was to pack enough clothes to live on, get all of Louis’ things and get out of town. My main concern was Louis.”
When asked whether James will have any formal parenting role, she replied, “I will be adopting as a single parent. Anything else will be taken day by day.”
Of her relationship with James’ three children, Bullock said, “I don’t want to know what life is like without those kids. … Whatever we need to do, in the healthiest way, we are going to be co-parenting.”
Looking ahead to life without James, Bullock said, “I really don’t know how our paths will intersect in the future, but the father I have known Jesse to be with all the kids is one that I hope Louis can experience one day, no matter how Jesse and I go on with our lives.”
News of the adoption quickly seized the attention of Bullock watchers and fellow celebrities alike.
On Wednesday morning’s “Live! With Regis and Kelly,” host Regis Philbin held up a copy of People magazine, which shows Bullock smiling at her baby son as she holds him aloft.
“It’s not very easy to adopt a baby,” Philbin said.
He’s cute, chirped co-host Kelly Ripa.
“Lucky little guy, too,” said Philbin.
And on ABC’s “The View,” co-host Joy Behar marveled that no one, “not the Pope, not Barbara Walters,” had known about Bullock’s baby.
“But I knew.” Why didn’t she say anything? “I forgot,” Behar joked.
Many rallied to Bullock’s defense on Facebook. By midday Wednesday, more than 6,000 had clicked that they “liked” an earlier-formed group dubbed “Team Sandra Bullock!” (“Team Jesse James” had a much lower following of some 50 people on the social network.)