Academy Award-nominated actress Maggie Gyllenhaal appears in Scholastic Parent & Child’s August/September Back-to-School issue discussing her new film Won’t Back Down, mommy politics, and her two daughters Ramona, 5, and Gloria, 4 months.
On mommy wars: “I used to be judgmental of the way other people would parent. I would look at someone talking on a cell phone while her baby was asleep in a stroller and think, ‘How can that mother have her cell phone out?’ Then you actually have a baby and you’re like, she’s sleeping; I have 10 minutes; I’ll make three phone calls. I think so much of my judgement—not only about how people parent, but about people in general— went away when I became a mom.”
On mommy perfection: “I was 28 when Ramona was born, and I had this idea that I think a lot of people in their twenties have, that I was supposed to do it perfectly. At least, if not perfectly, then exceptionally well. I’ve realized that that isn’t possible and that part of being a human is making mistakes—and making lots of them.”
On the joys of motherhood: “Now that Ramona is older, I enjoy hanging out with her as a friend. I know there’s the element of parenting where you have to be a mom and say no and do all the things that are not fun. But the fun part is being with this little person and learning about the world and listening to her questions. She comes and runs errands with me and we make it fun. When we talk, she talks like a person. She knows the words that she needs. She’ll ask me if she doesn’t. I like that.”
For more with Maggie, pick up Scholastic Parent & Child August/September issue, hitting newsstands August 20.