This past year has been incredibly eventful for actress Sarah Jessica Parker.
From welcoming twin girls, Marion Loretta Elwell and Tabitha Hodge via surrogate, to returning to the role of Carrie Bradshaw for the newest Sex and the City installment, Sarah’s 2009 was full of excitement.
The 44-year-old fashion icon recently sat down with The Daily Mail’s Elaine Lipworth – over 6am coffee near the Greenwich Village home she shares with husband Matthew Broderick, 47, son James Wilkie, 7, and her 6-month-old twins – to chat about life with three children, handling the spotlight, keeping her marriage strong and enjoying the chaos that is her life!
On how thrilling it is to have twin daughters: “It’s wonderful, it’s a blessing, we feel really privileged. It was a different experience, in obvious ways, from having James Wilkie, but it was very magical. It’s brought us unspeakable joy. They are tiny little girls just figuring out who they are, and it is a delight.”
On life with twins: “It’s crazy all day long, but you adapt very quickly. It is daunting, yeah, but we welcome the chaos. And as they get older there will be more chaos, once they start talking and crawling around and getting into mischief. It will be insane, it will be wonderful – and it is exactly what we wanted.”
On how her son is getting on with his new sisters: “Babies are not terribly interesting to a seven-year-old, but he’s very proud to be an older brother – he understands how lucky he is. I think your first-born is a special experience: we have a remarkable young boy in our lives and now I feel really grateful that he has siblings to share his good fortune. I belong to a big family, so I know the value of having brothers and sisters.”
On whether or not her son is aware of his parents’ fame: “When we leave our house and there are photographers outside, he’s certainly aware that something’s different for him, but so far he’s just pretty much interested in the things all seven-year-olds are interested in – primarily himself.”
On how she’d feel if her children chose to go into show biz: “With so many siblings, it wasn’t as if I missed out on being with other children. I had a great childhood. I don’t think I would encourage my children to pursue acting until they had gone to college, but then if that’s what they were to choose I would be supportive. James Wilkie doesn’t show any interest so far, and the twins are not expressing anything other than a desire to be fed and have a nappy change…”
On keeping a balanced life as a mother and an actress: “I feel like I do it the same way, for better or worse, as any other working mother! At the moment the twins sleep a good six or seven hours, and wake up as late as 7am – they are being incredibly cooperative! Your children are your priority; you do everything you can to make sure they are content. And you get into bed at night thinking of all the things you did wrong, and you hope things will be better the next day. I think women tend to put more pressure on themselves to do everything exceptionally well, which is an impossibility. But most working mothers probably do a lot better than I do, with far less support than I have. So I don’t think that I’m any champion. I muddle through the best that I can.”
On being a city girl: “The place where I feel least stressed out is Manhattan. I’m comfortable with all the noises of the city and its accompanying humanity. It’s my favourite place to be. I can’t imagine a time when I would want to leave New York City. You’d have to drag me kicking and screaming. Matthew would never want to. He was born and raised here, our son was born here, and it’s my home.”
On whether she ever gets a chance to enjoy “ordinary domestic life”: “I do, but I’m not going to lie to you, I haven’t cooked recently. But when I’m not working I cook and we all eat together every single night. Roast chicken, lamb stew – I’ll buy whatever looks good at the butcher’s.”
On spending alone time with her husband: “We don’t really have any quiet time at the moment, but sometimes we’ll have Saturday night together after I put the kids to bed. Any time spent alone is great, when everybody else is quiet (ha!) and asleep. That is very rare.”
On keeping her marriage strong while she and her husband are both enjoying high-profile acting careers: “We don’t live somewhere that shines such a strong spotlight on our marriage [she means LA]. And we live in a city where the engine is not the entertainment industry, it’s art and commerce and education and museums. I think we’ve made choices in our life that protect us from the glare and allow the relationship to be real.”