Honest Quotes About Parenthood From Selma Blair

Actress Selma Blair and her son, Arthur Saint Bleick, attend the 26th annual Race to Erase MS Gala at the Beverly Hilton hotel on May 10, 2019, in Beverly Hills.
Actress Selma Blair and her son, Arthur Saint Bleick, attend the 26th annual Race to Erase MS Gala at the Beverly Hilton hotel on May 10, 2019, in Beverly Hills.

Selma Blair knows the joys and difficulties of raising children.

The actor has a son, Arthur, with her ex-partner Jason Bleick. Since becoming a mother in 2011, she’s opened up about work-life balance, breastfeeding, parenting with multiple sclerosis and more.

In honor of her birthday, we’ve rounded up 16 quotes about parenthood from Blair.

On Parenting With Multiple Sclerosis

“[My son has] had to endure a lot; he’s seen a lot. He says, ‘Mommy’s not sick. Mommy’s brave.’ He said, ‘I love when you come to school because you make the kids laugh and you answer all their questions.’ … I explain what’s happening and that my voice doesn’t hurt, and we have really decent exchanges. I had no idea Arthur was proud of that. I thought, ‘I’m probably an embarrassment,’ but to know I’m not was one of my proudest moments.”

On The Reality Of Motherhood

“At my baby shower, a friend of mine said to me, ‘Oh, no, motherhood is horrible. Prepare.’ Initially, I was really hurt by that and thought, I don’t want someone in my life who says that kind of negative stuff. I was kind of shocked. And then, after I gave birth, I just kept going back to her words, and they were actually such a comfort. What she really meant was ‘Give yourself permission to feel horrible. It’s OK to say, “This isn’t bliss yet.”’”

On Getting Her Diagnosis After Struggling For Years

“I was ashamed and I was doing the best I could and I was a great mother, but it was killing me. And so when I got the diagnosis I cried with some relief. Like, ‘Oh, good, I’ll be able to do something.’”

On Her Parenting Advice

“Let your child be your North Star. If I tried to follow other people’s advice, it just wouldn’t necessarily fit in with our life and our way of living, and then I’d end up feeling like I’m not doing it right, which just isn’t empowering as a mother.”

On Being A Working Parent

“More and more I’m coming to realize that if my son sees that I’m happy and strong, and that I have connections with other people, then that is the best thing for him. In the very beginning, I’d think, oh no, the most important thing is that he just bonds with me and spends time with his dad, and that I get as much time with him as possible. And that’s very valid, and real, and amazing for all involved. At the same time, it’s the reality that I have to work, and the more he sees that I can go happily to work, and learn from these transitions with him, than his life is still rounded but has some adversity in it ― that’s how you learn. As long as he’s safe. I’m learning more and more that this is just to reality of my life. And I have to get used to it. I may cry in a corner if I have to, but ultimately I’m a lucky person.”

On Telling Her Son About Her MS

So I did have to tell him after the MRI. I said, ‘I have something called Multiple Sclerosis.’ And he almost cried and said, ‘Will it kill you?’ “And I said, ‘No. I mean, we never know what kills us, Arthur. But this is not the doctor telling me I’m dying.’ And he was like, ‘Oh, OK,’ and that was it.”

On Breastfeeding

“For me, breastfeeding killed for the first four days. You really think, oh my god, my nipples have gone through a cheese grater. I wish someone had told me I was going to be OK. When friends of mine say to me, ‘I can’t breastfeed, it’s too hard,’ I say, ‘Give it three more days. Just relax. It’s going to happen. If you choose to.’ I was almost going to give up, because the pain was so intense, my nipples went through a real breaking in period. Nursing turned out to be a really wonderful grounding thing for Arthur. I don’t think I’d be breastfeeding this long if I hadn’t gone to Italy with Arthur. There, the baby would cry as I was walking down the street, and they’re like, ‘Take your shirt off, you’re starving your baby.’ Whereas in America, there’s a lot of shame. I’m so over it. And then people will say it’s so weird to breastfeed once your kid has teeth ― my kid’s got teeth at two and a half months. To each his own.”

On Co-Parenting

“We have a flexible custody arrangement and Jason is a huge part of Arthur’s life. He’s shown up in a big way. I’m really proud of us.”

On Her First Days As A Mom

“When I was pregnant, I had no idea how attached I’d be and that I’d want to be in every part of Arthur’s waking and sleeping life. Before he was born, I hired a crazy expensive night nurse who was recommended by friends of mine. And as the day grew closer, I started to think, ‘I don’t want her in my house.’ I canceled her the day I went in to hospital going into labor. I did hire a doula the first night home, since I really needed to recover because my birth was so hard, but when I would hear her trying to soothe him, I said, ‘No no, not for me.’ I couldn’t sleep anyhow. No one really stays up with a baby the way a mom does. Dads will try, but for the most part I say moms are the ones to really do it. But I have so many friends who, god bless them, hired someone and they got sleep, and it worked for them. Whatever works for you, it just wasn’t my path.”

On Pregnancy

“I was so blissed-out when I was pregnant. I had an amazing pregnancy ― the hormones felt great, I was really active, I didn’t need a lot of sleep, I never had morning sickness after the first month. I was just a totally different person.”

On Finding Joy

“I didn’t think I would be in this state of health with a young kid. I didn’t think I would ever need a cane or wheelchair or mobility aid until well into old age. But here we are. I am happy. I wish I could ride and compete and carry my son and work right now, but the work on myself takes precedent. This walking bike is my lifeline to outside. And that is joy.”

On The Power Of Motherhood

“It blows my mind to think about how intense the bond is that women have with their children, especially in the first few years of life. And it just blows my mind that everyone who has children feels this way, too. If the world is capable of this much love, and patience, and understanding, I just can’t imagine what we’re all capable of together.”

On Being Present

“As a mom, whether strong or not so strong, I hope I can be with this child as he needs me or wants me. This is the best it gets for me. I don’t begrudge him going off to school and growing up. I welcome the days as we are here now. The days seem in the correct order of things. Right now, I save the light I have to laugh with this one. To feel the whole day and night. But when I recover, when the bone marrow makes the amount this body needs when I rebalance my body and re-learn, I will be more present with all those I cherish.”

On Her Wardrobe As A Parent

“When I was pregnant, I never wore black, which was my staple before. It’s not that I think black is sad, but I’m just too happy now; it just doesn’t feel totally right for me anymore.”

On Setting An Example For Her Son

“This is it. The only life we get. My disease isn’t a tragedy, but I tell myself, ‘You’re going to live in a way that would be an example for yourself and your son.’”

On Living In The Moment

“I never thought I’d cherish every second like I do now. I used to be the kind of person who was like, ‘When’s lunch? When do I get to go to bed? When do I get to go on vacation? When, when, when in the future?’ And this child has totally changed me. Now, I can’t help but smile and think, ‘I’m here now.’”

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