Mindy Kaling admits it's been "challenging" going from the mother of one young child to the mother of two, all while working on HBO Max's Sex Lives of College Girls and Season 2 of Netflix's Never Have I Ever, and handling the ups and downs of COVID quarantine.
"It's been a lot," the star, who welcomed son Spencer in September and is mom to 3-year-old daughter Katherine, told PopCulture.com. "Like to do my job and to be running my two shows and to have two children at home, one of whom is under four months old, that's challenging." Being able to spend more time at home with her kids has been "the one good thing," Kaling added, and initially came as a surprise to her eldest.
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Going from a one-child household to two has been its own adjustment. "It's like going from having one kid to having 12 kids in my house," she joked. "It looks like I run, like a daycare center." Even with her son Spencer at such a young age, Kaling said she can tell he has a very different personality from his big sister.
"It's just like a social experiment," she told PopCulture. "It's really interesting to see how two humans that come from my body can be so different from each other, like their personalities are, you can already tell. So I think there's a lot interesting anthropologically with me and my kids."
While Kit is "really smart" and "really funny," The Mindy Project star shared the toddler is also "pretty skeptical of people and things," which has been her default state since "like three days old." As for Spencer, the little boy is "all in immediately."
"Anybody can pick him up, and he smiles and giggles, and he's just so sweet," she gushed. "My daughter's sweet too, but it's like a little bit more like directed, her sweetness, and she chooses who she's going to do it to. So he's just easy, like he just wants to be happy and smile all day. And so there it's very different personality types, and I'm enjoying it."
Another aspect of motherhood she didn't fully realize until becoming a mom was how demanding it was to constantly provide nutritious food for everyone. "I think the biggest thing with being a mom is I'm like, 'Oh damn, I have to deal with the nutrition of three different humans, not just me.'" Partnering with Campbell's Well Yes! soups, Kaling said while sipping on the Butternut Squash and Sweet Potato variety she's been able to have a "nutritious, incredibly convenient, delicious" meal with her daughter during their daily walks or simply while staying at home.
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Anything that eases the demanding reality that is working from home while raising two young kids is an added bonus, although Kaling is working on giving herself some grace when it comes to her high standards for herself as we enter 2021 still in the COVID crisis. "I think the biggest thing that I've learned is that I'm really hard on myself professionally — I really want to output a lot at a high quality," she told PopCulture. "And I think that this idea of being hard on myself with my family and having really high standards of how I'm going to be a mom … that's really had to evolve."
"I'm not going to be able to do that, because it's like, we basically are inside my house and in my backyard, you know?" Kaling continued. "And so I just have to accept the fact that children are resilient and that nothing that I'm doing is all that terrible, and that everyone's going through it. So that makes me feel less bad."