Serena Williams Opens Up About Her Complicated Comeback, Motherhood And Making Time to Be Selfish

On a bright, cloudless early-August day in Silicon Valley, Serena Williams opens the back door of the Spanish-style home she shares with her husband, tech entrepreneur Alexis Ohanian, and walks down a flower-lined path to her office. Lemon trees bloom near the entrance to the backyard tennis court; in the clear distance, airplanes slip over the San Francisco Bay. Serena–who long ago ascended into the pantheon of stars known by a single name–swaps her pink Crocs for sneakers, and grabs a broom and dustpan to sweep pine needles off the hard court.

Just three nights earlier, Serena suffered the worst defeat of her 23-year professional career, a 6-1, 6-0 drubbing at the hands of Johanna Konta in the opening round of a U.S. Open tune-up tournament down the road in San Jose. That it was only her fifth tournament since giving birth to her daughter in September–or that in the fourth, Wimbledon, she made it to the finals in one of the most spectacular displays of will, skill and grit in the history of the game–didn’t make the loss hurt any less.

Serena Williams Time Magazine Cover
Photograph by Alessandra Sanguinetti—Magnum Photos for TIME

Serena has won 23 Grand Slam singles titles, one short of Margaret Court’s all-time record. The U.S. Open, which begins on Aug. 27 in New York City, is her last chance to even the score this year. And with age and the demands of parenthood looming over her singular career, Serena knows every chance matters. So, time to work.

She pounds shots from every angle, moving side to side, sending one ball screaming crosscourt at a cone target near the baseline. After a few hundred swings, her fitness guru, a white-haired sexagenarian named Mackie Shilstone, suggests she take a 30-second break. She insists on 20. He offers her water. She refuses.

Finally, Serena calls time. She sits on a wooden bench and fiddles on her iPhone. She’s tinkering with designs for her new clothing line when Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. waddles out the back door. Mom’s thwops and grunts have woken her from her nap. Serena leaps up to guide Olympia down the stairs to the court, counting off the steps in French: “Un, deux, un, deux.”

The moment can’t last. Serena isn’t done with her workout. Shilstone’s waiting to chase her all over the court and make her dodge tennis balls he tosses at her midsection. Olympia is led back inside, and Mom digs into more ground strokes. But for the rest of the training session, she steals glances at the house. “I wonder,” Serena says between backhands, “what my baby is doing?”

Millions of working parents wrestle with this question every day. In cubicles and call centers, at restaurants and on assembly lines, a large portion of the world’s workforce consistently thinks about their children. That concern can be deep, gnawing, even painful for anyone, but no working mother on the planet is quite like Serena Williams.

Becoming one almost killed her. The pregnancy was easy, she says, but the delivery led to a series of complications, including a life-threatening pulmonary embolism and hematoma that required multiple surgeries. She spent the next six weeks mostly in bed, too weak to get up on her own, let alone swing a tennis racket. Even as she gradually regained her strength, Serena couldn’t shake a sense of sadness, a feeling that she had done something wrong or wasn’t doing enough. She had gone through hell to have Olympia, and she loved her like it. “I didn’t think I’d be this attached,” Serena says. “It’s difficult to leave her.”

That’s a tricky proposition for a world-class athlete. Professional tennis all but requires selfishness–the time needed to train, to travel and to maintain competitive focus blot out virtually all else. Parenting is essentially the opposite. You are no longer the point. Yet at 36, an age when even the greatest champions tend to lose a step, Serena is determined to show that it doesn’t have to be so. Maybe not everyone can do it. Maybe just her. In her two tournaments since Wimbledon, she couldn’t make it past the second round. But maybe trying will be inspiration enough.

Serena William's Husband Ohanian Holding Olympia
Richard Shiro—Getty ImagesSerena’s husband Ohanian, seen holding Olympia during a Fed Cup match in February, has brought their daughter to most of her mother’s matches since she returned to tennis

Mothers the world over rallied around her remarkable run at Wimbledon, which Serena says has helped carry her through the low moments. “I dedicated that to all the moms out there who’ve been through a lot,” she says. “Some days, I cry. I’m really sad. I’ve had meltdowns. It’s been a really tough 11 months. If I can do it, you guys can do it too.”

Serena, as her vanquished opponents know, is different. And yet no modern athlete who has reached her level of stardom has ever returned from so difficult a childbirth, at her age, in a grueling individual sport like tennis, to claim a major global championship. And since Wimbledon, she’s faced a particularly rough stretch in her personal life. The man who killed her older sister Yetunde Price was released from prison. The postpartum symptoms haven’t fully gone away, and she says separating herself from Olympia has become even harder. Why keep at it?

“I’m not done yet, simple,” Serena tells me, as we drive into San Francisco one evening for a speaking engagement. She needs tennis as much as her sport needs her. It’s the one thing, as a mother, she can do solely for herself. “My story doesn’t end here.”

Serena was two months pregnant when she beat her sister Venus in the 2017 Australian Open final, a victory that broke Steffi Graf’s Open-era record of 22 major titles. (Unfair, Venus joked later: it was two against one.) Serena is convinced Olympia knows she’s a Grand Slam champion, describing her walk as a cocksure, “little bowlegged strut.”

Serena met Ohanian in Italy in 2015. They were engaged by the end of the following year and married in November 2017, in New Orleans, after Olympia was born. “I always assumed I’d marry a black guy,” Serena says. “I always felt that I could relate more with a black guy, that we’d have more struggles in common, you know?” But the pair clicked.

Their bond was tested fast. Olympia was born through emergency C-section. The next day, Serena began to feel out of breath. She suffered a pulmonary embolism in 2011, and thought this might be another one. Serena demanded a CT scan for her lungs. “If she doesn’t understand her body as well as she does, and the doctor doesn’t listen to her, I don’t necessarily think we’re sitting here,” says her agent, Jill Smoller, in the players’ lounge before Serena’s match in San Jose.

The scan showed blood clots. Coughing from the embolism caused her C-section wound to pop; in surgery, doctors found a large hematoma in her abdomen. Another procedure inserted a filter into her veins to prevent more clots. She kept the filter after it was removed, and puts it on her kitchen table as we talk. It’s shaped like a badminton birdie. “How was that in my veins?” Serena asks.

Ohanian remembers that harrowing stretch as a plunge from highest high to lowest low. “It’s a lot to change gears from being really happy and thrilled about bringing this life into the world to having to kiss your wife goodbye and praying she’ll be O.K.,” he says.

There were five surgeries, all told, and the first few months of recovery were particularly tough. The couple hunkered down at their home in South Florida, while Serena’s mother Oracene moved in to help. For weeks, Ohanian lifted Serena out of bed in the morning.

Olympia’s birth, and the frantic, fumbling bond of new parents, brought the family closer together. They now spend most of their time together in South Florida, and also have homes in Southern and Northern California, where Ohanian has installed a PlayStation near Olympia’s playpen. “Yeah, he’s a nerd,” says Serena. They also have a stocked bar in her playroom. “Sometimes,” she says, laughing, “you need it.” Serena even managed to implement “no cell phone” Sundays despite Ohanian’s full-time, device-dependent work life, but she’ll catch her husband in the act. “He doesn’t put it down until I look at him,” she says.

Her desire to play tennis again, however, never wavered. Williams began slowly, doing some light hitting in Florida. By early 2018, she felt strong enough to return to the pro tour. The results have been mixed. She lost in the first round in her second tournament, in March, and then reached the fourth round of the French Open in June before a pectoral injury forced her to withdraw.

Serena’s coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, says she made choices that put her family above her career, including staying home with Olympia and Ohanian rather than going early to Europe for clay-court prep. “I felt the decisions were taken through the angle of the family, where before, every decision was taken through the angle of tennis,” says Mouratoglou. “This is a big difference. Even if you are Serena, if you want to be successful in tennis, tennis has to be priority No. 1.”

Breastfeeding was another tension point. Serena nursed Olympia for the first eight months, even though she believes it made it harder for her to get back into playing shape. “You have the power to sustain the life that God gave her,” she says. “You have the power to make her happy, to calm her. At any other time in your life, you don’t have this magical superpower.”

Once Serena did arrive in France for clay-court training, Mouratoglou told her she should stop nursing, for the sake of her game. “It’s absolutely hard to take from a guy,” Serena says. “He’s not a woman, he doesn’t understand that connection, that the best time of the day for me was when I tried to feed her. I’ve spent my whole life making everyone happy, just servicing it seems like everyone. And this is something I wanted to do.”

But Serena also wanted to get back on top, and she says she came around to the idea that she needed to stop nursing Olympia in order to make it happen. “I looked at Olympia, and I was like, ‘Listen, Mommy needs to get her body back, so Mommy’s going to stop now.’ We had a really good conversation. We talked it out.”

Serena then committed to Mouratoglou’s training plan. “I’ve never seen her work like that before,” says her coach. In July, Serena made her thrilling run on the Wimbledon grass, before falling to Angelique Kerber in the final. The tennis world was floored.

“I’ve never met an athlete that can just produce the highest level of hunger, desire and mental determination other than her,” says Chris Evert, who won 18 Grand Slam singles titles in her career. “I’m in awe that she got to the finals.”

Still, Serena feels like she let the opportunity slip away. She stopped scouting her opponents so closely, since they tend to bring their game to another level against her. But she decided to prep for Kerber. “I really wish I hadn’t done that,” she says. “Because she played much, much harder than she’s ever played in her life. Hit nothing like she normally does. I was like, O.K., this is classic. Why did I do this? Just focus on Serena. That’s when I do my best.”

Back in Silicon Valley, Serena is behind the wheel of her white Lincoln Navigator, maneuvering the tank-size SUV into a metered parking spot outside her local Equinox. After her backyard hitting session, she agreed to a 30-minute strength and agility workout with Shilstone. But every minute at the gym counts as lost time with Olympia, and she sets the timer on her phone, promising to vanish after a half hour.

She means it. Olympia is almost always on her mother’s mind. On the ride to the gym, Serena spotted a deer and her fawn in the front yard of someone’s house. She stopped the car, rolled down the window, and gasped. “Oh my God, are you serious? That’s me, that’s Momma, that’s Serena.” She then looked toward the fawn. “That’s the baby, that’s Olympia.” She gazed at the deer for a few beats more, then wondered aloud if the baby deer had a “Qai Qai.” That’s the name of Olympia’s favorite doll.

Like so many new parents, Serena still marvels at how strongly she feels pulled to her daughter, finding joy in how Olympia washes her hands in the dog bowl, smooshes avocado into her hair and shot puts Tupperware across the kitchen. “Sometimes she just wants Mommy, she doesn’t want anyone else,” Serena says, nearly choking up. “I still have to learn a balance of being there for her, and being there for me. I’m working on it. I never understood women before, when they put themselves in second or third place. And it’s so easy to do. It’s so easy to do.”

Early on, eager to bond with Olympia, Serena was hesitant to let others even hold her. “She was a bit of a baby hog,” says her sister Isha Price. “She was putting way too much pressure on herself. But that’s what she does.”

Serena says now it was born of a deep insecurity that she was somehow failing as a mom. “It was crazy to hear her in a state of, ‘I just don’t know what to do with the different emotions,’” says the singer Kelly Rowland, part of a small group of moms Serena leans on for advice. “It was hard to wrap my head around it. I’m like, She can do everything.”

That’s the thing about being a parent, though, particularly a working mom. No matter your resources–and Serena, who has won more than $ 86 million in prize money, and Ohanian, a co-founder of Reddit and a prominent venture capitalist, have far more than most, including child-care help–it’s still easy to feel like you’re somehow failing. The stress of juggling family and career has brought out the same insecurities in Serena that other parents feel. “I don’t think I’m doing it right,” she says.

She fell prey to peer pressure on social media, posting a photo of her post-pregnancy body on Instagram. She says now that she used a waist trainer to push in her stomach. “I hated that I fell victim to that,” she says. “It puts a lot of pressure on women, young and old.”

Serena Williams at the Cincinnati Masters
John Minchillo—AP/ShutterstockSerena’s comeback has been mixed; she lost in the second round at the Cincinnati Masters, here on Aug. 14

Her vulnerability as a mom is a stark contrast to her poise on the court and, increasingly, off it. Since returning to the tour, for example, Serena has spoken out about gender discrimination in the workplace, questioning why women coming back from maternity leave should lose their seeds in a tournament draw. Williams was the top-ranked player in the world before she had Olympia. At the French Open, she did not receive a seed–a penalty that could dissuade other players from having children.

“It would be nice to recognize that women shouldn’t be treated differently because they take time to bring life into this world,” Serena says. She’s not the first player to come back after giving birth, but it wasn’t until she did that the U.S. Open pledged to incorporate maternity decisions into its seeding process.

Another sore spot: discrepancies in drug testing. The United States Anti-Doping Agency has tested Serena five times in 2018, according to its records. Meanwhile Sloane Stephens, who won the U.S. Open a year ago, has been tested once. Serena called such differences “discrimination” on Twitter and thinks it’s because some people won’t accept that she’s clean. “Look at me,” she says, glancing at her herself in a mirror at home. “I was born this way. They’re like, ‘Oh, she can’t be that great, she must be doing something.’ I don’t even lift weights.” Serena laughs. “It’s all God, you know,” she says. “But whatever.”

Serena is used to being a target. It began when she and Venus started rising up the ranks of a predominantly white sport, and has continued even as she became the face of the game. Last year, while Serena was pregnant, the former top men’s player Ilie Nastase made a racist comment about her child, and in the spring, the owner of a pro tournament in Madrid took a shot at her weight.

“They sure don’t throw a dart at other people, huh?” Serena says after I ask what accounts for the hate. She says, rightly, that the vitriol is far outweighed by her millions of fans, before considering the question again. “I’m a black woman,” she says. “Women in general are not treated the same as men who’ve had the same amount of success. And then, being a black woman, doing something historically that’s never been done, it’s easy to feel like, ‘We’ve always picked on people of this color. So I’m O.K. to continue to do it.’” Serena says she thinks black men have it even tougher. In February, NBC released a documentary she narrated on the 1968 Summer Olympics, and she marvels at Tommie Smith and John Carlos, who famously raised their fists during the national anthem to protest America’s civil rights record. “They sacrificed everything,” Serena says.

So did Colin Kaepernick, I mention. Serena owns a small stake in the Miami Dolphins, and she supports the right of NFL players to protest during the national anthem.”He hasn’t lost his joy,” she replies.

Serena has met the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback twice: once before he started his protests in 2016, and once after he became Donald Trump’s bogeyman. Since taking a knee during “The Star Spangled Banner,” Kaepernick has raised $ 1 million for various nonprofits. “Colin is happy with what he’s doing,” she says. “Some people are different. He’s just different.” She doubts an NFL team will hire him, especially after he filed a collusion grievance against the league. But she’s convinced Kaepernick would win a Super Bowl. Few believe in the power of determination like Serena. “He’d have so much to prove,” she says. “I would. I can’t imagine he would be any different. ‘Man, I’m about to show out. Y’all gonna see stuff you’ve never seen before.’”

After her workout at Equinox–30 minutes, on the dot–Serena drives the SUV back home and lingers in her attached garage. She’s beginning to talk, for the first time publicly, about a painful discovery from three nights earlier. She was in a players’ area before her match in San Jose, with about 10 minutes until showtime, when she pulled out her phone and checked Instagram. There, she learned that the man convicted of fatally shooting her sister Yetunde Price, in 2003, had been released on parole earlier this year. “I couldn’t shake it out of my mind,” Serena says. She laughs, which she sometimes does during uncomfortable moments. Price had three children, who were 11, 9, and 5 at the time of the their mother’s death. “It was hard because all I think about is her kids,” she says, “and what they meant to me. And how much I love them.”

Serena Holding Olympia
Alessandra Sanguinetti—Magnum Photos for TIME Serena, holding 11-month-old Olympia at their home outside of San Francisco

She takes a deep breath. “No matter what, my sister is not coming back for good behavior,” she says. “It’s unfair that she’ll never have an opportunity to hug me. But also …” she pauses, the thought hanging in the air. “The Bible talks about forgiveness.” Does she forgive the killer? “I’m not there yet,” she says. “I would like to practice what I preach, and teach Olympia that as well. I want to forgive. I have to get there. I’ll be there.”

Serena will bring all of this onto the sport’s brightest stage at the U.S. Open in late August, the final Grand Slam tournament of the year. She’s playing for something bigger than herself now, which can bring outsize expectations. “I really hope she gets to 25,” says Billie Jean King, a pioneering 12-time Grand Slam singles champion. King says she’s seen signs that the fire is back in Serena’s belly. “It’s in everything she’s telling the world,” she says. “She gets this look, then she puts that leg up and she gets that fist going. I love it when she gets like that.” King even thinks Serena could be President one day. Serena laughs off the suggestion.

The bright lights of Flushing Meadows have been the site of some of Serena’s greatest triumphs–she’s won the Open six times–but her last two appearances ended bitterly. In 2015, Roberta Vinci shocked Serena in the semifinals, denying her bid to become the first player since 1988 to win all four major tournaments in the same year. The next year, she again was upset in the semis, falling to No. 10 seed Karolina Pliskova. “I’m trying to get a new vibe there,” Serena says, “but I’m not going in there thinking I’m going to lose. That’s not being Serena. That’s being someone else.”

Serena wants Olympia to see and remember her mom winning a Grand Slam title. When I mention that some kids might not begin recalling specific events until around age 5, she says she hopes Olympia’s memory will be more advanced. Or maybe she’ll will keep going, long past when her peers have given it up. “I don’t plan on that,” Serena says. Then again, she never figured she’d still be playing at 36. If someone would have asked her a decade ago if she’d still be swinging a racket in 2018? “I would have said, Absolutely no, impossible, no chance,” she says. “I’d bet my life on it.”

Priorities have changed. She wants Olympia to have a sibling. She’s learning on the fly, like all parents. She still gets down, and has moments when she doesn’t want to hang out with Olympia and then feels terrible for it. And then there’s all the time she can’t bear to pry herself away, despite knowing that her game will suffer for it. But mostly, Serena is learning to recognize the swings, tell herself they’re normal and fight the urge to beat herself up. “Nothing about me right now is perfect,” she says. “But I’m perfectly Serena.”

Sometimes a good cry helps. And sometimes lessons come the hard way. San Jose was one of her first nighttime matches since she gave birth. Before Olympia, the day of a night match was all about Serena. Practice early, nap, focus. But this time, she tended to her daughter. She took a little rest, but woke up when Olympia did. She fed her, made sure she’s O.K. “I need to be more selfish for just those couple of days,” she says. “I keep telling myself she’s not going to remember that I spent an extra two hours with her. I should be taking that two hours and focusing on my career.”

Earlier, Serena says as much to Olympia in the kitchen. She wipes yogurt off the baby’s face and swings her around the room, much to Olympia’s delight. “Momma’s going to make you very sad right now,” Serena tells her. “Momma has to go to the gym. But it hurts me more than it hurts you.”

Serena then steps into the garage and heads out. Back to work. Again.

This appears in the August 27, 2018 issue of TIME.
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Tully’s Terrifying Truth About Motherhood

Diablo Cody’s Tully was praised for its honest, realistic portrayals of the challenges of motherhood—in the trailers alone, new mom Marlo, played by Charlize Theron, joked about her leaking breasts, postpartum body and mommy porn.

But Tully goes beyond just showing everyday realities of motherhood: it delves into the darkest, most terrifying aspects of being a mom in our society and counters media that portrays moms as superhuman as well as media portraying them as ultra-vulnerable. Tully turns those archetypes on their head—and reveals mothers to be simply human.

Marlo is far from blissed-out after the birth of her third child. She experienced postpartum depression after the birth of her second, and she already has a lot on her plate, including caring for one child who has special needs. Concerned about her well-being, her rich brother offers to pay for a night nanny—someone to come each night and care for the infant while Marlo sleeps.

Marlo initially dismisses the idea, remarking that is sounds like something out of “a Lifetime movie where the nanny tries to kill the family and the mom survives and she has to walk with a cane at the end”—presumably a reference to the 1992 thriller The Hand that Rocks the Cradle, along with other films like it. But as the pressures of caring for three children start to weigh on her though, Marlo gives in. She calls the night nanny, and a 20-something woman named Tully, played by Mackenzie Davis, shows up.

Tully cares for the baby, cleans the house and even bakes cupcakes. She quickly becomes Marlo’s friend and confidant. But things get weird when the two get in a terrible car accident after a night of binge-drinking—and we learn that Tully is actually a figment of Marlo’s imagination, based on a younger version of herself. “Tully” was Marlo’s last name before marriage. “Tully” isn’t Marlo’s nanny—she’s a reminder of who Marlo once was, and who she could have been.

Like other thriller and horror films about motherhood like The Hand that Rocks the Cradle, Rosemary’s Baby, or the recent home invasion film Breaking InTully explores our cultural anxieties around motherhood putting women in danger—but Marlo isn’t in danger because of frightening, fantastical scenarios like psychotic nannies or home invasions, or even her baby being the antichrist. She is in grave danger because of the real, everyday conditions of our unaccommodating, unsupportive, patriarchal society.

By locating horror in the everyday experiences of mothering, rather than rare encounters outside of our control, Tully grounded anxiety around motherhood in a reality that we can’t leave behind when we walk out of a movie theater.

The story of a woman reconnecting with her life by channeling a younger version of herself could be empowering—but instead, Marlo’s connection with her past almost kills her. That is a terrifying conclusion: the film, in this way, suggests that it’s not possible for Marlo, or the many women who see themselves in her fictional existence, to strike a real balance in their lives, to juggle their needs and the needs of others without support. Tully’s manifestation as a caregiver is not as merely a hallucination—it’s a metaphor for a mother struggling to meet her own multifaceted needs.

No, Tully insists. There is no space for the kind of joyful postpartum balance that Marlo appeared to have achieved in a world where she’s not sufficiently supported socially or societally. No, Marlo cannot find time to get good sleep, nurse her baby, care for her young children, deal with her son’s special needs at school, bake cupcakes for the class and fulfill her husband’s sexual fantasies.

When Tully’s car plummeted off of a bridge in the film’s gut-wrenching climax, it reminded me of the iconic end scene in Thelma and Louise—a film that, by way of its own similar conclusion, declared that there was little room in the real world for female empowerment and solidarity. No, Tully insists on the bridge. Women can’t have it all—and our socially-sanctioned pursuit of it just could kill us.

But Tully doesn’t end after its titular character careens off of a cliff. Instead, Marlo survives—and her husband, having realized the terrifying extent of what’s been going on, attempts to show her the support she needs.

At the end of Tully, we see Marlo walking around her home with a cane—much like the horror-movie wife she references earlier in the film. In The Hand that Rocks the Cradle, the film’s protagonist, Claire, hires a nanny so she can go back to work who then slowly plots to take over her life and ultimately attempts to kill her. But it isn’t just a career outside of the house that Marlo wants—it’s a sense of herself as a person outside of her role as a mother. Marlo is not endangered by her need to ask for help, nor is she threatened for desiring more than motherhood. Instead, she nearly kills herself by doing her best to deny she needs support.

Tully reminds us that mothers are, in fact, simply human beings—strong, vulnerable, thriving, struggling and everything in between. While the film’s bleak portrayal of motherhood was indeed extreme, its exaggerated darkness was necessary for starting an important conversation on how we as a culture depict, value and think about motherhood.

Marisa Crawford writes about feminism, pop culture and books for venues including Broadly, Bitch, BUST and Hyperallergic. She is also the founder and editor-in-chief of the feminist literary/pop culture website Weird Sister, and is the author of two books of poetry.

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The post Tully’s Terrifying Truth About Motherhood appeared first on Ms. Magazine Blog.

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Cardi B Gets Real About Motherhood – ‘You’ll Never Be Ready For Mommy Mode!’

The rapper is now a mom and is realizing what that really means. But while it’s definitely not easy and nothing can really prepare you for it beforehand, Cardi B wouldn’t have it any other way.

Cardi has been sacrificing her precious sleep ever since welcoming baby daughter Kulture, but that hasn’t dragged her down.

Today, she took to her social media to share a video with her followers in which she addressed her 10 MTV Video Music Awards nominations, something she was obviously really happy and grateful for.

She also went on to open up about motherhood, using a doll to talk to the fans as she apparently did not look a hundred percent at the time and did not want to show her face.

‘Thank you to everybody. I cannot believe that I got nominated for 10 VMA Awards. I’m just been so busy, so tired. Like, I’m in a different world, a different dimension. Now, let me get back to this mommy thing. Let me tell you something. No matter how many books you read or advice I get, y’all will never be ready for mommy mode,’ she said in the clip.

Before that post, she shared a pic that showed only half of her makeup-free face and wrote that she absolutely needed some sleep.

cardiSource: instagram.com

Yesterday, Cardi also posted a pic featuring her and hubby Offset at the doctor with their newborn for a routine checkup and she was not wearing any makeup in that one either.

Ain’t nobody got time for that when they have a bundle of joy to take care of!

As you may remember, Kulture was born on July 10 and the rapper couple is yet to post a pic of her.

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Jordin Sparks Talks Motherhood, Thinks Husband & Baby Are Going To ‘Conspire Against Her’ | PeopleTV

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Serena Williams is crowdsourcing motherhood advice from Instagram

And we LOVE her for it…

Serena Williams' baby

From the editors of InStyle US
Words by Alexandra Whittaker

Serena Williams welcomed her beautiful daughter Alexis Olympia earlier this year, and she’s been Instagramming up a storm of adorable photos of her. But that doesn’t mean first-time motherhood is a piece of cake for Williams.

The tennis champ took to Instagram on Sunday to talk about one of the things that stresses her out the most about being a mum to Alexis Olympia, and she’s asking for help.

‘Teething—aka the devil—is so hard,’ she wrote. ‘Poor Alexis Olympia has been so uncomfortable. She cried so much (she never cries) I had to hold her until she fell asleep. I’ve tried amber beads… cold towels…. chew on mummies fingers…. homeopathic water (lol on that one) but nothing is working. It’s breaking my heart. I almost need my mum to come and hold me to sleep cause I’m so stressed. Help? Anyone??’

Thankfully, many Instagram users are heeding her call, offering soothing words and advice to Williams in the comments section.

‘Teething is always hard on baby and Mum. The best thing to do is use a teething ring. Put it in freezer and let it get cold, then let her chew on it. Refreeze after it get warm and use baby Tylenol. Be patient, it’s a process, but Alexis will be fine in time. Welcome to motherhood,’ one user wrote.

‘If all else fails try baby orajel to rub on her gums,’ another said. ‘It will get better once this phase is over.’

We wish both Serena and baby Alexis the best of luck with this tough phase.

The post Serena Williams is crowdsourcing motherhood advice from Instagram appeared first on Marie Claire.

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In Case You Missed It: The Beauty of Motherhood

motherhood

Being a mother is not easy. Motherhood requires women to wear multiple hats and live up to the unrealistic expectation of being superwoman. Even when moms make it look easy, it’s not. In addition to raising children, many are working moms, while others stay at home or work for themselves.

In honor of Mother’s Day weekend, here are a few stories about the impact of motherhood along with a few tips on how to celebrate your mom.

College Senior Born on Mother’s Day Now Saves Mothers

 

Student’s work addresses maternal mortality rate in Texas

 

(Image: Courtesy of Dominique Earland)

 

Dominique Earland wasn’t just born on Mother’s Day—in a sense, her birthright became her destiny. She developed a maternal health kit for Dallas-area women. Click here to read more.

 


Mother’s Day Gift Guide: 5 Thoughtful (but Easy) Last-Minute Ideas

 

Mom would love any one of these five great gifts

 

mother's day (Image: iStock.com/kirin_photo)

 

Mother’s Day is this Sunday, but don’t worry if the annual holiday has slipped your mind. If you have yet to get a gift for your mom, we’ve got you covered! Click here to read more.

 


After His Mother’s Murder, He Still Had an Advocate

 

The work of the Office of Civil Rights in the Department of Education is one of advocacy

 

advocate (Image: iStock.com/KatarinaGondova)

 

Read the head of Democrats for Education Reform’s plea to preserve the Office of Civil Rights in the Department of Education, an advocate of the underserved. Click here to read more.


The Best Mother’s Day Gift For Every Mompreneur

 

This Mother’s Day, give your mompreneur a gift that keeps on giving with a ticket to this year’s Entrepreneurs Summit

 

momprenuer (Image: iStock/FatCamera)

 

There’s no better present for an ambitious mompreneur than a ticket to the 2017 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Summit! Click here to read more.

 


Moms Mean Business: How To Become A Mompreneur

 

Learn key tips on how to succeed in parenting and business

 

motherhood (Image: iStock.com/ monkeybusinessimages)

 

Are you a mom looking to start your own business? Here are a few tips for full-time mothers who aspire to become a mompreneur. Click here to read more.

 


 

Lifestyle – Black Enterprise

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Behati Prinsloo Describes Motherhood and Raising Baby Dusty as ”Heaven” at 2017 Met Gala

Behati Prinsloo, 2017 Met Gala ArrivalsMotherhood looks incredible on Behati Prinsloo.
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How My Grandma Taught Me About the Beauty of Motherhood

“I envy them.
They’re brave.
Seeds cast by the wind to land where they may, they stay and hold against most hot, most cold.
They persevere, roots shallow yet fierce and free.
They epitomize to me all that I sometimes yearn to be.”

-Julie Andrews, “Wildflowers”

When I was a little girl, I’d collect flowers on my walk to my grandma’s house. I’d gather them in huge bunches, grasping their stems tightly, anticipating the look my grandma would have on her face when I pulled them out with a Surprise! from behind my back.

I remember one time my uncle was there and when he saw what I had in my small hands he teased, “Those are weeds!” I wanted to throw them away, afraid my grandma wouldn’t want them anymore. And when she saw me with my hands behind my back she asked me where her flowers were — it had become such a daily routine, of course she would wonder why I hadn’t brought her flowers. I mumbled apologetically, “But I brought you weeds.” Her eyes sparkled as she told me: “Mija. Wildflowers are just as pretty as any other flower.” And she took them from my hand and placed them gently in a cup of water.

As a child, I learned that when people ask what your favorite flower is, they expect to hear roses or daisies maybe daffodils. I always tell people tulips are my favorite. But the truth is, I love wildflowers. I remember seeing the California Poppies growing wild on the side of the freeways and thinking they were the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. Even now, my eyes are drawn to the majestic Indian Blanket I see growing in the fields through out my neighborhood in Texas.

With wildflowers, my grandma taught me to see beauty in all things. To see the beauty that lies in the grittiness of life.

It’s why I’m drawn to running. Looking at it from the outside I can see how people are initially pushed away- – sweaty, tired, aching lungs and legs. I know when I finish a run and my face is bright red, body drenched in sweat — I know that isn’t the traditional definition of beauty. But I feel the beauty in it. The beauty of being pushed beyond my comfort level, doing something I love and yet it is so physically challenging and sometimes emotionally draining, as I waiver on wanting to give up and wanting to finish what I started.

The beauty of running is like wildflowers. Tough. Perseverance. Not as graceful as the gymnast or as dazzling as the soccer player. But my grandma’s words echo in my hear — it’s just as beautiful as any other flower out there.

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And Motherhood is where I feel her presence the most. The way she taught me to appreciate the beauty of wildflowers is the anchor of my place in this world: appreciating the beauty of motherhood. It’s not ever what I expected it to be — this most challenging, heart wrenching, and sweet life of being a mother — a life that I chose. And I wouldn’t give it up for anything this earthly world could offer me.

I see and feel the beauty of motherhood — through the tears and heartache, the sweet tender moments that are so achingly personal you don’t want to share it with the world through social media–because it’s yours to keep, the caress of a soft cheek, wiping away tears on a wailing child, rocking a little one to sleep, the feelings of wishing you could take away their pain — and yet knowing they must experience it to find their own place in the world, grateful your oldest still lets you hold her — a wiry-limbed almost 9-year-old and feeling the bittersweet ache as you remember how her body used to fit completely, wholly, into the nook of your arm all while wondering: How did you get to this place?

Motherhood is like wildflowers: Gritty. Fiercely intense. Beautiful.

Wildflowers — just as beautiful as any other flower out there.

Never Give Up,

Nicole

For my children. I appreciate you.

Through all the things my eyes have seen
The best by far is you

For all the places I have been
I’m no place without you

For all the things my hands have held
The best by far is you
~Andrew Macmahon, Cecilia And The Satellite

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Thank you for my wildflowers: the gift of motherhood.

Nicole Scott writes about family, faith, and her love of running at My Fit Family.

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

30 Strangers Discover They Share The Same Doubts, Pains And Joys Of Motherhood

Being a mom means something different for every woman, and it’s nothing short of inspiring to watch a group of moms share what this identity means to each of them.

Eco-friendly baby product delivery service The Honest Company brought together 30 moms, who had never met before, to have an unscripted conversation about their journey through motherhood. Before long, the moms realized that the challenges and rewards of parenting made them all more similar than they realized at first.

Here are a few powerful snippets from the moms’ chat:

“No matter how many books you read, it does not prepare you for parenthood.”

“My mom would want me to be the best mom, of course, but you’ve got to be your own mom.”

“There is no balance. There is no black and white. We live in this grey.”

“Having a kid has been beyond amazing. And then I have days where I haven’t slept, and I’ve been like, ‘This sucks, what did I do?'”

“I really do struggle because all I ever wanted was these babies … and now that I have them, I love them so much and I didn’t realize how much of myself I would lose.”

“I have another little one to take care of, and I don’t even know who I am, yet.”

“I remember when my daughter laughed for the first time … and that was it. I melted. I was in love. For the rest of my life, if I have that, I’m good.”

The Honest Company has also started a hashtag, #YouGotThis, for moms on social media to weigh in on the conversation.

Want to share your story? Let us hear it in the comments below, or tweet us @HuffPostParents.
GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

Recessions May Thwart a Woman’s Motherhood Plans Forever: Study

Research found initial impact was most pronounced among women in their 20s, and lasted until they were in their 40s
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
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5 Lessons from New Motherhood on Living the Good Life

I wouldn’t call my pre-baby outlook on life misguided, but like most 20-, er, 30-something-year-old professionals (especially those here in New York), the concept of work-life balance was far-fetched, to say the least. Perhaps I was looking too far away — like France or back to my grandparents’ generation — for a practical way to apply the concept to my own life. Or maybe there was some truth to the notion that the “good life,” was only attainable by certain groups of folks. Or, maybe, I just hadn’t become a mother yet.

Who knew that the thing everyone says is supposed to turn your world upside down would actually shift it into balance. Granted, you might not be able to tell — well, with my home consistently towing the line between new parenthood and an episode of “Hoarders” — but where my husband and I may lack in magazine-worthy digs, we’re making up for it in lessons learned about truly living the good life.

Here are five that we’ve gleaned so far… in no particular order:

1. Savor Every Sip (…Or Bite…Or Moment, For That Matter)
This isn’t one of those things experienced parents say in rosy-hued retrospect, it’s the lesson I learned on Valentine’s Day 2014, one of our first night’s out with baby, which ended with a change of clothes in a gross public men’s room and a sleepy child with shoes on her hands. As for the cocktail shown here? I drank it…alone…before hurrying past judgmental restaurant patrons and dumping its boozy byproducts down the drain so baby could eat.

2. Make Nice With Mother Nature (Or, Better Yet, Invite Her In)
Winter 2014 sent many of us reeling into hibernation, a place that I previously imagined cozying into with my new baby until Spring arrived. But let’s face it, there are only so many gingerbread lattes you can drink, and two weeks in, I was over it. Plant life isn’t anymore entertaining than a sleepy newborn is, but if I were to go back in time, I’d stop waiting for Mother Nature to have some compassion and bring in some natural elements — like this herb garden — instead.

3. Invest In Good Bedding
Somewhere, someone’s living the good life off the profits of all the baby gear we’re practically buried under. But as most new parents learn, no matter how cool the gadget or how soft the blankie, nothing compares to our lap, in our bed, when it comes to nap time.

4. Make The Most Of The Mundane
My first day alone without baby wasn’t as glamourous as I’d imagined. It involved a trip to the doctor, a wait in line at the post office, and a lonely, mommy-guilt-ridden lunch at Panera Bread. But in the spirit of making the most of my “free time,” I swung by the hair salon for a treatment, where I spotted this little oasis of grown-folk goodness. I’m sure it’ll be a choking hazard and otherwise impractical at some point, but for now, I say yes to any little luxury that will help our apartment-sized playpen feel like a home again.

5. Life Is Better When You Can Unplug
So maybe I did learn something from the French after all, and every time my daughter whines at the sight of my cell phone or laptop, and even more so when she smiles at me, I’m reminded of this fact.

Style – The Huffington Post
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Single Motherhood Doesn’t Seem to Hinder Happiness

Raising a child more likely to brighten these women’s lives, study says
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
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With Child: Wisdom and Traditions for Pregnancy, Birth, and Motherhood

With Child: Wisdom and Traditions for Pregnancy, Birth, and Motherhood


Bargain Books are non-returnable. Beautifully illustrated with over 150 paintings and drawings, "With Child" celebrates the wonder of pregnancy and motherhood. Drawing on the vast, inherited body of wisdom of mothers around the world, expert Deborah Jackson has translated ancient rituals and myths into practical knowledge that will instruct and encourage mothers (and fathers too). From ancient fertility rites and lore about conception to the folk mythology of labor and aboriginal beliefs about the first months of life, "With Child takes us around the world and through the ages in a fascinating presentation of panhuman maternal wisdom. Learn why the ancient Greek tradition of having a doula, a full-time mother’s assistant trained in the transition between pregnancy and motherhood, is regaining popularity for modern women. Discover the traditional way to plant a birth tree; herbal remedies to stop your baby from crying; yoga techniques for pregnancy; how to conduct a naming ceremony; or how to use feng shui to plan the baby’s sleeping place. Charting an inspirational course through pregnancy, birth, and early motherhood, "With Child" is the perfect gift for mothers and mothers-to-be, a beautiful and unique volume to be treasured and shared by all parents.
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