Even though Meredith Vieira stepped down as co-host for the popular Today show in June, life sure hasn’t slowed down for the beautiful mother-of-three. The Who Wants To Be A Millionaire host – who is mom to children Ben, 22, Gabriel, 20, and Lily, 18 – recently opened up to parade.com about life as an empty nester, on teaming up with the non-profit Pajama Project organization and how she maintains a healthy marriage despite a hectic work schedule.
On embracing her empty nest: “I sometimes feel guilty saying it, but I think the empty nest is great! We did our job, as my husband points out repeatedly. You’re supposed to give your children roots and wings, and their roots are firmly planted in the ground and they have a sense of themselves and of place and purpose. They have the ability to fly away from home and to test those wings and to start their own lives separate from us. The fact that our three kids are launched, so to speak, and seem to be very happy, young people, makes me feel good about what we accomplished. That is the goal, and I feel we accomplished it — knock on wood!”
On teaming up with the Pajama Project: “It’s so simple and it speaks to the basic needs of children. I have three children of my own and when they were growing up, what they loved more than anything in the day was a bath after dinner and putting on a nice pair of warm pj’s and reading a book. I’m convinced that it gave them a strong sense of security and of home and of being safe and loved. Every child deserves that and that was the concept behind the Pajama Program. It’s so wonderful and so easily accomplished.”
On balancing her personal life with her work load: “If you look at my career path, it’s been always about prioritizing. I don’t believe that you can have it all. You have to set priorities for yourself. I’ve always felt that family was the most important thing. That’s not a putdown of people who work very hard and are juggling very high-pressure jobs, but you have to figure out what works best for you, and for me, that meant switching off different jobs through the course of my career to find ones that provide better balance for me. I think it is all about balance and juggling and also maintaining a certain sense of humor along the way and knowing that if you drop a ball here or there, it’s OK, you’re human. You have to take the time to really assess where you are in life. I really believe in following your heart.”
Continue reading Meredith’s interview at parade.com