Brooke Shields: Becoming a Mother Made Me Normal

11/26/2008 at 12:00 PM ET
Courtesy Cookie

Life for actress Brooke Shields is far from normal. "I had this trainer once who always said to do two out of three things: eat well, rest, and exercise," says Brooke, who admits that with her hectic schedule on Lipstick Jungle and her responsibilities to her two daughters, she often finds herself having to choose "which one out of the three can I do?" As mom to 5 ½-year-old Rowan Francis and 2 ½-year-old Grier Hammond, Brooke reveals in the December issue of Cookie magazine that her freedom to do as she pleases has been replaced with long, often 14-hour days on the set of Lipstick Jungle. As the actress and her daughters have made New York City their new home, Brooke shares that her husband Chris Henchy — who manages to "bring back" a "really self-sufficient" and detached Brooke — commutes every other weekend to spend time with his family — an arrangement that is far from perfect.

However, despite stretching out her schedule to accommodate all of her loves in life, Brooke believes that now — more than ever — she has managed to reach a level of normalcy that she never once felt. This revelation was recently was brought to light during a performance at Rowan’s school. The busy mom explains that she quietly arrived to the auditorium and watched "Rowan’s eyes [light] up when she saw me sneaking a wave." A moment that Brooke recalls as "profound," the 43-year-old realized "it took having a child, for me to feel like I belong, that I’m normal."

Included in that sense of normalcy is Brooke’s determination to spend quality time with her daughters making memories — no matter how exhausted she may be! As her "version of being selfish has shifted" over the years to accommodate her children, Brooke can often find herself sprawled out on the floor — thinking her "brain’s turning to mush" — playing My Little Pony. "They’re not going to remember Mom was tired. They’re going to remember I did the weather chart or story time at school. So you just do it. And you’re tired," explains Brooke, who says "it’s the mundane stuff that is important."

Click ‘More’ to read why Brooke doesn’t want her girls to be brats.

While Brooke is thrilled to spend time with Rowan andGrier, she is equally set on raising her daughters to be well-roundedchildren.

"There are so few children Ilike. If you’re not polite, you can’t come to my house. Manners[represent] respect and kindness. I want people to like my kids, and ifthey’re bratty, they’ll have a harder time in life."

Afteran almost too close relationship with her mom, Brooke feels it has beenher destiny to be the mother of two daughters. Rarely separated fromher own mother as a child, the actress admits that her daughters havetaught her "that it’s okay to have boundaries." In fact, according to asurprised Brooke, "they want them." Another lesson that hasbeen learned as a result of being a parent herself is the undeniablefact that the joys of parenthood are often balanced out with themoments of complete despair. "Once you love someone that much, youthink, god, why did I do this to myself? It’s so heart-wrenching! Andthen you realize: It’s so heart-wrenching. That’s why I did it to myself," says Brooke.

To see shots of Brooke and her girls from the photo shoot, click here

Source: Cookie Magazine

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FILED UNDER: Kids , News , Parenting

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Showing 29 comments

ellen on

grier is sooo pretty 🙂

Natasha on

Her older daughter looks exactly like her. Her girls are gorgeous!

brooke on

Wow her oldest rowan is a clone of her, just with lighter hair. Grier looks just like her daddy. Love the dresses the girls are wearing, and brooke is gorgeous

mmh on

Those girls are stunning!

At first what Brooke said about there being very few kids she liked rubbed me the wrong way… But then I realized I’m kind of the same way! My husband and I spend hours each day reminding our son to say “Please” and “thank you,” to not chew with his mouth open, to not interrupt when people are talking… It’s WORK, hard work, and some parents don’t understand that! Why should I spend hours on that so my son will be a well behaved child and then put up with other people’s bratty children when they come over to my house?!!!!

Amber on

This is a BEAUTIFUL family. I love that shade of blue on Rowan, and Grier’s expression is so cute!

Lauren on

Brooke’s always been striking, but she’s really been exceptionally beautiful these past few years. She has come into her own, I think.

Jennifer on

Rowan looks so much like Brooke. Such gorgeous little girls! 🙂

Rye on

I actually really really AGREE with Brooke’s comment about not liking very few kids. I feel like a lot of parents just rely on coddling and spoiling there kids and it winds up turning the child into a brat who is ill-behaved and disrespectful. It is VERY hard work teaching a child to be well behaved but I feel like that should always be a top priority amongst parents. ESPECIALLY the parents I see who are popping out child after child. If you can’t teach them to be well behaved and have manners, STOP having them!!!

Jazz on

Rowan and Grier are beautiful girls. Rowan looks so much like Brooke!

Chestar on

I wonder why they spell Rowan Francis with an ‘ i ‘ intead of Frances with an ‘ e ‘ !

Surely with an i is a boys version and a girls version is with an ‘e’.

It annoys me so much when people spell my name francis… i even have an uncle who does it

Jaclyn on

Manners, how refreshing… I am just one of the many that find many parents, kids, and ordinary grown ups all a bit much lately. We need a Post book for kids/parents.

Manon on

I actually think the little one is more like her mother. More and more like her. The shape of the face – she has a rather unflattering hairstyle (although cute!) but is gorgeous.

The older one is gorgeous too – I see her father in her totally.

Ashley on

It is francis because she is named for brooke’s deceased father. she talks a lot about it in Down Came The Rain.

Beautiful girls she has.

Kimber Christian on

I just read Brooke’s book “Down Came The Rain” last month. Wow, what a journey she went through. I have a new found respect for her! Her daughters are BEAUTIFUL and I am so happy for her!

Julia A on

Wow all 3 of them are absolutely gorgeous, and those photos are very beautiful. The comment about playing My Little Ponies made me smile, as I spent many many hours of my childhood playing My Little Ponies with my sister. 🙂

Nc on

She’s a baby, Jaclyn. How flattering should her hair be? Sheesh. You folks are tough.

ekaterina on

i really find her down to earth for someone who has been in the public eye so long- and i like that she is able to admit that she cant do it all! ( i cant but i dont look like THAT!!!) I am jealous! i wold love to be in her mummy group! lol

breiah on

Yeah, I really don’t care for a lot of kids outside my family or inner circle of friends. I’m in no way mean to them and I understand their behavior is a reflection of their parents abilities but it isn’t anything I want to deal with. I remember in college I was working in a shoe store and this little boy about 3 sneezed in my face while I was putting a shoe on him. His parents just stood there!

Rye on

Rowan looks just like her mom. Greer looks just like her dad to me. I think it’s cute that they are both strawberry blondes. So cute! These girls are both stunning!

Sarita on

I also believe manners are very important and I do correct children if they are being rude in a public place. If the parents don’t do it, someone should.

The girls look beautiful on the cover, however a little less airbrushing would have been nice.

melanie on

im amazed how big grier has gotten! they’re all so pretty!

beansmama on

Rye, I personally take offense to your comment. I have had 4 kids in the past 8 years (not including 2 mc’s), and dh and I would like at least 3 more kids. We have worked very hard to make sure our kids have manners, just as you have. To make such a broad sweeping generalization is very insulting. Being what is considered a large family these days, we hear a lot of mean comments from people, and to be honest, I am surprised it was allowed here on CBB.

Dilasari Hidayat on

She has lovely kids. Best wishes for her children.

maeve on

i´m so happy for her after the hell she went through during paxil withdrawal. well done brooke

Donna on

Hooray for Brooke and her beautiful family. As a fan, I have watched Brooke Shields grow from a child star to a wildly successful adult star, role model, and now, Mother! She has been candid about her struggles and has shared her happiness with the world. It is very touching to think of Brooke playing with her daughters and experiencing the childhood that she never had a chance to enjoy. Best wishes to all.

Karine Freitas on

não vejo a hora de ver a Rowan ficar grande,acho que ela lembra muito a mamãe,a epoca de a lagoa azul,que é meu fiome preferido da Brooke.

Gemma on

Brooke and her girls are all gorgeous! Such a ridiculously beautiful family…

Mine on

Everyone comments about how beautiful the girls and brooke are, but i am concerned. in every photo, brooke is so dolled up, so MADE up, and i just wonder what message this mom is transmitting to her daughters. i mean, the fact she was in lipstick jungle (now cancelled), did calvin ads, and still primps and preens for mags and paps…i hope these girls end up being doctors or writers, and NOT putting so much emphasis on how they look. brooke SEEMS nice enough (and as the child of a celebrity, i can assure you, all is not as it seems) but…well, you get the message.

Anonymous on

no one is going to trying to see you remember your dad he’s my friend not disrespect u don’t important