Adele has gotten super real about the ups and downs of parenthood before (who can forget that time she went off about the pressure to breastfeed in the middle of a concert?). But in the upcoming December issue of Vanity Fair she’s opening up in a whole new way. In her latest interview, which is already up on VF.com, the award-winning singer opens up about everything from her battle with postpartum depression to how she really feels about being a mom. And let me tell you, as a fellow mom, much of what she says is refreshingly honest and also incredibly reassuring.
It takes a strong woman to admit that motherhood isn’t always full of butterflies and rainbows. In fact, most of us think that we’re doing something wrong if we actually fess up that we’re not always happy on this motherhood journey. But now, Adele is speaking out and letting us all feel more comfortable knowing we’re not alone.
For starters, the singer admits that while she loves being a mother, there are probably no more children in her future.
“I’m too scared,” she told the mag. “I had really bad postpartum depression after I had my son, and it frightened me.” But instead of struggling alone in silence, she sought comfort in other moms who could relate to what she was going through. “I was gravitating towards pregnant women and other women with children, because I found they’re a bit more patient,” she explained. “You’ll be talking to someone, but you’re not really listening, because you’re so f*ckin’ tired.”
I so feel this — I struggled with postpartum depression myself after my first daughter was born, but didn’t actually realize what it was until my second child arrived. I thought that the days of me wanting to stay indoors and secluded from everyone were my new normal. Those times when the sound of a baby’s cry made me want to rip my hair out. That feeling like you’d made a terrible mistake. I thought every mother felt that way.
Speaking with Vanity Fair, Adele admits that she too wasn’t fully aware that what she was experiencing was true postpartum depression:
“My knowledge of postpartum — or post-natal, as we call it in England — is that you don’t want to be with your child; you’re worried you might hurt your child; you’re worried you weren’t doing a good job,” she told the magazine. “But I was obsessed with my child. I felt very inadequate; I felt like I’d made the worst decision of my life … It can come in many different forms.”
And that’s when she realized that what she needed to feel better was so desperately simple, yet hard to come by when you’re a new mom: She needed time to herself.
“Eventually I just said, I’m going to give myself an afternoon a week, just to do whatever the f*ck I want without my baby.”
And she doesn’t feel guilty about it. Not one bit.
It’s true that there’s a certain kind of love that fills our hearts when we become mothers. It’s a love that we’ve never experienced before, one that’s hard to fully explain to others. It’s unconditional and all-encompassing. It makes us feel that no matter what is going on in the world, we will do whatever we can for the sake of our child.
But no matter how deep that love is, it doesn’t change the fact that we need to take care of ourselves.
And it’s that very sentiment that Adele hits right on the head:
“I love my son more than anything, but on a daily basis, if I have a minute or two, I wish I could do whatever the f*ck I wanted, whenever I want. Every single day I feel like that,” she told the mag.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve forgotten something at the grocery store and would give anything just to hop in my car and run back without loading all of the kids back into the car with me. Or how much I’d give for the simple ability to sit on my living room couch and watch a movie without interruption. It’s the little things that we took for granted prior to becoming a mother that we tend to miss most. Those are the ones we now so desperately seek out in our day.
And as Adele reminds us, there’s nothing wrong with that.
“Four of my friends felt the same way I did, and everyone was too embarrassed to talk about it; they thought everyone would think they were a bad mom, and it’s not the case,” she shared with Vanity Fair. “It makes you a better mom if you give yourself a better time.”
And that’s something we all deserve.