Jessica Simpson opens up about the transition from 2 kids to 3

"Physically it was the hardest [pregnancy] I had gone through," shares Simpson.

Jessica Simpson Keeber
Jessica Simpson/Keebler

Twelve months ago we at Motherly were talking a lot about Jessica Simpson's third pregnancy and how honest she was with her fans and followers. Being pregnant with her third child, Birdie, was not easy and Jessica did not hide that, keeping her Instagram followers updated on everything from broken toilet seats to swollen feet.

Today Simpson is nearly one year postpartum and still shining a light on the harder parts of motherhood through her new memoir, Open Book, and her long-standing partnership with Make-A-Wish, helping to grant wishes for children battling critical illnesses.

Simpson recently spoke to Motherly about her pregnancies, her power as a mother and how "the change from two children to three is huge."

Simpson's most recent pregnancy was a totally different from her previous two, she tells Motherly. Her oldest child, daughter Maxwell, was born back in 2012 when Simpson was 31. Son Ace came very quickly afterward, taking his mama by surprise.

"When I got pregnant four months later after having my daughter, I was definitely in shock and my hormones never had time to adjust," she tells Motherly.

Ace came into the world in 2013 when his big sister was just 14 months old, and although her pregnancies were practically back-to-back, Simpson had different experiences each time.

"Every pregnancy for me was so different. My first pregnancy I stopped working. It's not that I stopped creating, but I got to really just embrace just being pregnant for the first time and it was truly a beautiful moment," she explains.

During her pregnancy with Ace, Simpson was still dealing with how much her body changed when she'd been expecting Maxwell. She tells Motherly, "I truly thought with Maxwell, even though I gained like 90 pounds or something, that it was just all going to fall off. Obviously, we don't have a 90-pound child, so I don't even know why I thought that. With Ace I made a lot more healthy choices."

As Simpson explains in Open Book, she went through a lot between her first two pregnancies and her third. She'd gotten sober, gone to therapy and grown a lot as a mom, a person and a professional creator.

"And so with Birdie, I mean she was just really the cherry on top. When I found out I was pregnant with her, it was such an overwhelming blessing, unexpected blessing, gift from God. And yes, I was in the middle of writing a book and I was about to actually release an album. And so I had to put everything on hold and take life one moment at a time and it allowed me to slow down and really just understand myself because I went through therapy the whole time I was with Birdie and I was also writing music," she explains.

"And with Birdie, I mean I was older," says Simspon, who was 38 when her youngest daughter arrived. "Through that pregnancy it was amazing because I was writing my book, I was writing music, but physically it was the hardest that I had gone through."

"I had edema, I was swollen, I was breaking toilet seats," she recalls. " And I think the people out there and can relate to me in so many ways because I'm honest. I'm honest about it and you just got to laugh at the end of the day with some of the stuff that you go through. You know you are creating lives, so it is a beautiful, empowering thing."

Simpson also finds empowerment in her work with Make-A-Wish. She's been a partner of the organization for longer than she's been a mom, but becoming a mom made her even more committed to the cause.

"As a mother, I'm so empathetic and I have so much compassion for parents that do have children that are struggling and that are sick. It's heartbreaking, but it's also empowering to be a part of moments like this for the families. If I was going through something like this I would absolutely be wanting to be a part of the Make-A-Wish foundation, because you want to give your child any and everything that they can have in any moment, especially when they don't feel like they can ever have it."

From now until April 30, 2020 mamas can help the Make-A-Wish Foundation grant more wishes for critically-ill children simply by buying specially-marked Keebler cookies. You can also check out Keebler's Instagram page to help raise money. For every comment that tags a friend on the campaign social post and uses the cookie emoji Kebler is donating $1 to Make-A-Wish.

In This Article

    These are only the vitamins I give my children and here's why

    It's hard to say who loves these more—my kids or me.

    When I became a mama five years ago, I didn't put too much thought into whether my son was getting the right vitamins and minerals. From breastfeeding to steaming and pureeing his first bites of solid food, I was confident I was giving him everything to support his growth and development.

    But then the toddler years—and the suddenly picky palate that accompanied them—came along. Between that challenge and two additional children in the mix… well, I knew my oldest son's eating plan was falling short in some vitamin and mineral categories.

    I also knew how quickly he was growing, so I wanted to make sure he was getting the nutrients he needed (even on those days when he said "no, thank you" to any veggie I offered).

    So when I discovered the new line of children's supplements from Nature's Way®, it felt like a serious weight off my chest. Thanks to supplements that support my children's musculoskeletal growth, their brain function, their immune systems, their eyes and more, I'm taken back to that simpler time when I was so confident my kids' vitamin needs were met.*

    It wasn't just the variety of supplements offered by Nature's Way that won me over: As a vegetarian mama, I'm the picky one in the family when it comes to scanning labels and making sure they meet our standards. The trick is that most gummy vitamins are made with gelatin, which is not vegetarian friendly.

    But just like the other offerings from Nature's Way that I've already come to know and love, the children's supplement line is held to a high standard. That means there's no high-fructose corn syrup, gelatin or common allergens to be found in the supplements. The best part? My two oldest kids ensure we never miss their daily vitamins—they are so in love with the gummy flavors, which include tropical fruit punch, lemonade and wild berry.

    Nature's Way Kids Mulitvitamin

    Meanwhile, my pharmacist husband has different criteria when evaluating supplements, especially when it comes to those for our kids. He appreciates the variety of options from Nature's Way, which gives us the ability to rotate the vitamins based on our kids' daily needs. By keeping various children's supplements from Nature's Way on hand, I can customize a regimen to suit my kids' individual requirements.

    Of course, high-quality products often come at a higher price point. But (to my immense gratitude!) that isn't the case with Nature's Way, which retails for a competitive value when compared to the other items on the shelf.

    Like all mamas, my chief concern is supporting my children's health in any way I can. While I see evidence of their growth every time I pack away clothes they've outgrown, I know there is much more growth that doesn't meet the eye. That's why, for my oldest son, I like stacking the Brain Builder gummy with the Growing Bones & Muscles gummy and the Happy & Healthy Multi. My 3-year-old also enjoys getting her own mix to include the Healthy Eyes gummy. And both of my older kids are quick to request the Tummy Soothe tablet when something isn't sitting right in their stomachs.* And I'll admit it: I've tried it myself and the berry blast flavor really is tasty!

    Although my current phase of motherhood may not be as "simple" as it once was, there is so much to appreciate about it—like watching my kids play and sing and create with their incredible imaginations. Along the way, I've eased up on some of my need for control, but it does help to have this range of supplements in my motherhood tool kit. So while I may not be able to convince my son to try kale, having the Nature's Way supplements on hand means I do know he's right on track.*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

    This article was sponsored by Nature's Way. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

    Our Partners

    This post is brought to you by Staples. While this was a sponsored opportunity, all content and opinions expressed here are my own.

    One of the biggest changes in my household once my daughter started homeschooling was that, suddenly, everything and everyone in our home had to start pulling double duty. While I was used to wearing a lot of hats (mom, wife and WFH employee, to name a few), suddenly our dining room was also pulling shifts as a classroom. My laptop was also a virtual teacher. Our living room hutch was also a school supply closet.

    If I didn't want my home to be overrun with an abundance of clutter, I had to find products that could multitask. Here are 10 products that are saving this WFH + homeschooling mama right now.

    Stylish storage cabinet

    Whether I need a place to keep the printer or just want to keep crayons and colored pencils organized, this pretty cabinet provides a mixture of exposed and hidden storage without clashing with my living room decor.

    White board calendar + bulletin board

    With so much on our plates these days, I need a visual reminder of our daily schedule or I'll forget everything. This dry erase version makes it easy to keep track of Zoom meetings and virtual classes—and I also love using the corkboard to display my daughter's latest work from art class.

    Natural Recycled 3-Ring Binder

    From tracking our curriculum progress to organizing my family's paperwork, I can never have enough binders. Even better, this neutral version is pretty enough that I can display them on the bookshelf.

    Bamboo storage drawers

    The instant you start homeschooling, it can feel like you're suddenly drowning in papers, craft supplies and more. Fortunately, these simple bamboo drawers can be tucked into the cabinet or even displayed on top (seriously, they're that cute!) to keep what we need organized and close at hand.

    Laminated world map

    I love this dry-erase map for our geography lessons, but the real secret? It also makes a cute piece of wall decor for my work space.

    Rolling 7-drawer cabinet

    When you're doing it all from home, you sometimes have to roll with the punches—I strongly recommend getting an organizational system that rolls with you. On days when both my husband and I are working from home and I need to move my daughter's classes to another room, this 7-drawer cabinet makes it easy to bring the classroom with us.


    From our first day of school photo to displaying favorite quotes to keep myself motivated, this 12"x18" letterboard is my favorite thing to display in our home.

    Expandable tablet stand

    Word to the wise: Get a pretty tablet stand you won't mind seeing out every day. (Because between virtual playdates, my daughter's screen time and my own personal use, this thing never gets put away.)

    Neutral pocket chart

    Between organizing my daughter's chore chart, displaying our weekly sight words and providing a fits-anywhere place to keep supplies on hand, this handy little pocket chart is a must-have for homeschooling families.

    Totable fabric bins

    My ultimate hack for getting my family to clean up after themselves? These fabric bins. I can use them to organize my desk, store my oldest's books and even keep a bin of toys on hand for the baby to play with while we do school. And when playtime is over, it's easy for everyone to simply put everything back in the bin and pop it in the cabinet.

    Looking for study solutions for older children? Hop over to Grown & Flown for their top picks for Back to School.

    Work + Money

    Cameron Diaz on having a baby at 47: 'You really have to work hard for it'

    "The only pressure for me now is I have to live to be, like, 107, you know? No pressure!"

    This is the decade that saw the face of first-time motherhood change. The number of first-time mamas under 30 is shrinking, while more and more women are becoming moms after 40.

    Cameron Diaz is one of them. The actress and businesswoman, now 48, became a mom in January at the age of 47. In a new episode of Naomi Campbell's YouTube series, No Filter, Diaz opens up about what it's like to become a mom in your fourth decade.

    "A lot of people do it the other way around ... they get married [and] have a family in their youth," says Diaz."I'm kind of doing it in the second half of my life."

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