I’ve never had the opportunity to enjoy a “Take Your Kid to Work” day, so forgive me if I am a little bit jealous of Anne C. McClain, who brought her adorable 4-year-old son to her job at NASA because she’s an astronaut and probably the coolest mom ever.
McClain posted the photos of herself in full space gear next to her son, and they are peak cuteness. Photographer Bill Stafford took the official NASA photos last summer, a representative at NASA’s Johnson Space Center told Business Insider.
McClain shared the pics on Twitter, writing “[S]ometimes, I bring him to work with me. Not sure who enjoys it more!” (McClain’s Twitter account is no longer active, without any explanation given.)
McClain is preparing to fly to the International Space Station in November, so she and other members of Astronaut Group 21 took part in the official photo shoot, per NASA standards.
After McClain posted the photos online, a Twitter user asked the astronaut if it’s harder to stay home or go into space. "No easy answer there,” replied McClain, also a decorated US Army Major, an attack helicopter pilot, and an aerospace engineer. “One provides immediate comfort, the other achieves not only life long goals but also teaches life long lessons. Gotta play the long game here.”
She added, “But it doesn’t make missing out on waffles with the kiddo in the morning any easier. Most parents can relate."
McClain does consider her 4-year-old son a key motivator in her career, though. Responding to soccer player Abby Wamback’s question about work-life balance, McClain tweeted Sunday, “The hardest part about training for space is the 4 yr old I have to leave behind every time I walk out the door.”
She then added, according to The Independent, "I try to remember he will grow up and know what it looks like, behind the scenes, to pursue a dream. He is my 'why.'"