*Whoopi Goldberg surprised her co-hosts when she returned to “The View” on Thursday after an extended absence due to a serious bout with pneumonia.
Goldberg gave Joy Behar, Abby Huntsman, Ana Navarro, Sunny Hostin and Meghan McCain quite the shock at the top of the show with her first live appearance following a 3-week stay in the hospital.
“This is my first foray out,” Goldberg told the audience. Her co-hosts were all kept in the dark about Whoopi’s visit.
“I’m not there yet, I know that. The only way I’m going to get better is if I begin. So this is my beginning.”
As reported by PEOPLE, Goldberg — who has not hosted the show since Feb. 6 — explained that her recovery is not over yet.
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“I said I was Whoopi’s cousin.” ?@WhoopiGoldberg shares an hilarious story about being recognized while in the hospital: “She says, ‘You know, you look like that lady from @TheView!'” https://t.co/qJd4uwKw5v pic.twitter.com/vsTjbspr6n
— The View (@TheView) March 14, 2019
“I still have a cough and that’s the last thing to go, apparently,” she said. “Over the next week and a half I will start to be here more often. But I wanted the first foray out to be to come see y’all because I missed y’all.”
Goldberg also revealed that she was diagnosed with sepsis — a condition triggered when the body has a life-threatening response to an infection.
“This stuff, really for everybody, you think you can push through because you got a little cold. And you think because you healed quick that something crazy can’t happen? Well it could,” she said. “This is a cautionary tale for all of us. You must really take care of yourself because there’s little tiny stuff out there that will kill you that you never think of,” Goldberg added, before referencing the death of Kim Porter.
“The scariest moment was hearing my doctor say to me, ‘You do realize how close to death you were?'” she went on. “That was like, uh, no, actually I hadn’t thought of it. Prognosis is I’m not supposed to be here but I got permission. You need to just be upright and not be around a bunch of folks, because my immune system is challenged. I’m supposed to just like ease back in and I will.”
Whoopi didn’t stay the whole show, but after speaking about her health, she said she hopes to be back on Monday.
“You can never leave me again, ever!” McCain said. “You cannot leave this show. We missed you so much!”
Scroll up and watch the emotional reunion via the clip above.
“The View” airs weekdays (11 a.m. ET) on ABC.