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She was the first senator to give birth while serving in office and made history by bringing her baby onto the Senate floor. Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth knows what working mothers are up against each day. Her ability to juggle work calls and juice boxes while simultaneously getting her daughter off to preschool is impressive, and her legislative record proves how important it is for mothers to be represented in government.

During the fourth episode of The Motherly Podcast, Duckworth tells Motherly co-founder Liz Tenety why America needs mothers in government, and she also says that mothers—even decorated war heroes—need to accept help and lean on the village sometimes. "I thought I could do it all. I thought, you know, I'm a Congresswoman, I run my own office, I have my own schedule, I can make this work," she recalls. "Boy was I wrong."

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Thankfully, Duckworth had her mother in her corner, which meant she didn't have to send her oldest daughter to day care as an infant, but so many American mothers don't have family they can rely on for childcare.

They're heading back to work just weeks after giving birth, which can negatively impact their health, their baby's health, and their family's overall well-being, and that is bad for America's well-being, says Duckworth.

"We're the only developed nation in the world that does not have a paid family leave policy," she explains. "And I think it's an economic detriment that we don't have that. I think we're competing with European nations and Asian nations that actually have this, and it makes us less competitive on a global scale to not have this for our workers."

Every other member country of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has paid leave on a national level, and such policies have been shown to increase job retention, labor force participation, productivity and economic growth.

Most Americans (including the President of the United States) agree with Duckworth that the country needs paid leave. In this way, paid leave is a bipartisan issue, much like another issue Duckworth championed, the Friendly Airports for Mothers Act.

Her own experience as a frequently flying, pumping mother was the catalyst for the act, which passed last year and ensures moms traveling in major American airports don't have to express milk in a bathroom stall or plug in their pump next to someone's laptop at Starbucks.

And this week Duckworth, along with fellow democrat Elizabeth Warren and Republican Senator Steve Daines, introduced the bipartisan Fairness for Breastfeeding Mothers Act, which aims to require location rooms (that are not bathrooms) in federal buildings that are open to the public.

Tammy Duckworth proves that when lawmakers have lived the reality of mothers, laws that protect mothers become reality.

To hear more about Sen. Duckworth's experiences in motherhood and government listen to The Motherly Podcast, sponsored by Prudential, for the full interview.

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Our babies come out as beautiful, soft and natural as can be—shouldn't their clothes follow suit?

Here are nine of our favorite organic kids clothing brands that prove safe fabrics + stylish designs are a natural fit.

Estella

A brick and mortar store in Manhattan that opened in 2002, Estella is NYC's go-to shop for luxury baby gifts—from sweet-as-pie organic clothing to eco-friendly toys.

L'ovedbaby

@lovedbaby

We l'oved this collection from the moment we laid eyes on it. (See what we did there 🤣) Free of things harsh added chemicals, dangerous flame retardants, and harmful dyes, this collection is 100% organic and 100% gorgeous. We especially adore their soft, footed rompers, comfy cotton joggers, and newborn-friendly kimono bodysuits.

Looking to stock up? Don't miss Big-Find Thursday every week on their site—a 24-hour flash sale that happens Thursdays at 9 a.m. PST and features a different body style, collection, and discount every week!

Hanna Andersson

@happyhannas

One of our all-time favorite brands for durability, style, + customer service, Hanna Andersson doesn't disappoint in the organic department, either. From an aww-inducing organic baby layette collection all the way to their iconic pajamas, there are so many organic styles to swoon over from this beloved brand. And we swear their pajamas are magic—they seem to grow with your little one, fitting season after season!

Monica + Andy

@monicaandandy

The fabric you first snuggle your baby in matters. Monica + Andy's (gorgeous) collection is designed for moms and babies by moms with babies, and we love it all because it's made of super-soft GOTS-certified organic cotton that's free of chemicals, lead, and phthalates. Newborn pieces feature thoughtful details like fold-over mittens and feet.

Finn + Emma

@finnandemma

"Here boring designs and toxic chemicals are a thing of the past while modern colors, fresh prints and heirloom quality construction are abundant." We couldn't agree more. Made from 100% organic cotton, eco friendly dyes, and in fair trade settings, we love this modern collection's mix of style + sustainability.

We especially love the Basics Collection, an assortment of incredibly soft, beautiful apparel + accessories including bodysuits, zip footies, pants, hats, and bibs, all available in a gender-neutral color palette that can work together to create multiple outfit combinations. The pieces are perfect for monochrome looks or for mixing with prints for a more modern style.

SoftBaby

@littleaddigrey for @softbaby_clothes

You'll come for SoftBaby's organic fabrics, but you'll stay for their adorable assortment of prints. From woodland foxes to urban pugs, there's no limit to their assortment (meaning you'll even be able to find something for the new mama who's hard to shop for). Plus, the name says it all--these suckers are soft. Get ready for some serious cuddle time.

Gap Baby

@gapkids

Organic may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the Gap, but this popular brand actually carries a wide variety of organic (and adorable) baby + toddler clothes. From newborn layette basics to toddler sleepwear—and more—there's something for everyone in this collection. Everything is 100% cotton, super soft + cozy, and perfect for eco-conscious mamas.

Winter Water Factory

@winterwaterfactory

Certified organic cotton with Brooklyn-based swagger? Be still our hearts. Winter Water Factory features screen-printed textiles in bold designs you'll want to show off (get ready for some major Instagram likes). And the husband-and-wife co-founders keep sustainability at the forefront of their brand, meaning you can feel good about your purchase--and what you're putting on your baby.

The company makes everything from kids' clothes to crib sheets (all made in the USA). For even more cuteness, pair their signature rompers with a hat or bonnet.

Under the Nile

@underthenile

Under the Nile has been making organic baby clothes since before it was cool. Seriously, they were the first baby clothing company in the USA to be certified by The Global Organic Textile Standard. They've kept up that legacy of high standards by growing their Egyptian cotton on a biodynamic farm without the use of pesticides or insecticides, and all of their prints are made with metal-free colors and no chemical finishes.

Motherly is your daily #momlife manual; we are here to help you easily find the best, most beautiful products for your life that actually work. We share what we love—and we may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

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Whether I live next to you or across the country, social media makes it easy for us to stay updated on each other's lives and that's a wonderful thing. I love seeing pictures of your kids and I think it's great that you choose to share videos of your child singing, giggling and taking his or her first steps.

I simply choose not to share pregnant pictures, or even a family photo from the hospital once our daughter arrived because my pregnancy, birth and growing family are parts of my life I wanted to protect from the outside world.

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