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Mindy Kaling gets honest about working mom guilt: 'You always feel like you're missing out'

"I literally think there's no world where I would always feel like I bond with her enough and was not shortchanging time with her," Kaling told the Hollywood Reporter.

Mindy Kaling gets honest about working mom guilt: 'You always feel like you're missing out'

Mindy Kaling has two huge projects coming up. Her new movie Late Night hits theaters in June and she just announced that she's working on a comedy for Netflix. Clearly, becoming a mother did not slow Kaling's career down at all and she's okay with that—now. In recent interviews, Kaling explains how hard it was to come to terms with balancing work and raising her daughter Katherine, born in late 2017.

Her advice for new moms? Accept that you are enough (and accept help when you need it).

Before Kaling welcomed baby Katherine into the world she thought she would be working less after becoming a mom, but as her current career trajectory indicates, that didn't happen. "I used to tell myself when I was full-time on The Mindy Project and I was acting all day, 'Well you know what, I won't be doing that when I have my daughter. And I'll feel like I see her all day every day,'" And Kaling thought that would be enough. "But it's never true. I literally think there's no world where I would always feel like I bond with her enough and was not shortchanging time with her," Kaling told the Hollywood Reporter.

"I am seeing her more often, but it's like unless I was just seeing her 100% of her day, you always feel like you're missing out. So I kind of wish I had known that. [There's] a low-key feeling of not being quite adequate enough and being happy with that and thinking, 'Okay, I'm coming to terms with that,'" Kaling says.

It's a feeling that we all need to come to terms with, because whether you're spending time away from your baby because you're working on a cool new Netflix show or spending time away from them because you're also raising their siblings, we need to know the hours we are with them are enough, something Kaling is learning and thinks new moms should know.

It took some time for Kaling to recognize that, but she was quicker to recognize that no mama can do it all alone and there will be things she needs to ask for help with as a parent. After Katherine was born Kaling did not become a breastfeeding expert overnight, so she reached out to an expert. "And I actually hired a woman who came over to my house, who's like the lady in Los Angeles who teaches women how to breastfeed, and she came over and gave me a lesson. So, I really asked for help which was key for me," she recently told PureWow.

Motherhood changes us, but it doesn't make us superhuman or infallible. We're just humans trying to raise other humans and we only have so many hours in the day. We don't need to spend 100% of our time with our kids to love them with our whole hearts.

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This is my one trick to get baby to sleep (and it always works!)

There's a reason why every mom tells you to buy a sound machine.

So in my defense, I grew up in Florida. As a child of the sunshine state, I knew I had to check for gators before sitting on the toilet, that cockroaches didn't just scurry, they actually flew, and at that point, the most popular and only sound machine I had ever heard of was the Miami Sound Machine.

I was raised on the notion that the rhythm was going to get me, not lull me into a peaceful slumber. Who knew?!

Well evidently science and, probably, Gloria Estefan knew, but I digress.

When my son was born, I just assumed the kid would know how to sleep. When I'm tired that's what I do, so why wouldn't this smaller more easily exhausted version of me not work the same way? Well, the simple and cinematic answer is, he is not in Kansas anymore.

Being in utero is like being in a warm, soothing and squishy spa. It's cozy, it's secure, it comes with its own soundtrack. Then one day the spa is gone. The space is bigger, brighter and the constant stream of music has come to an abrupt end. Your baby just needs a little time to acclimate and a little assist from continuous sound support.

My son, like most babies, was a restless and active sleeper. It didn't take much to jolt him from a sound sleep to crying like a banshee. I once microwaved a piece of pizza, and you would have thought I let 50 Rockettes into his room to perform a kick line.

I was literally walking on eggshells, tiptoeing around the house, watching the television with the closed caption on.

Like adults, babies have an internal clock. Unlike adults, babies haven't harnessed the ability to hit the snooze button on that internal clock. Lucky for babies they have a great Mama to hit the snooze button for them.

Enter the beloved by all—sound machines.

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Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Earth Mama: Effective, natural herbal care for mamas and babies

Founded and grown in her own garage in 2002, Earth Mama started as an operation of one, creating salves, tinctures, teas and soaps with homegrown herbs. With a deep desire to bring the healing powers of nature that have been relied on for thousands of years to as many mamas as possible, Melinda Olson's formulas quickly grew into Earth Mama Organics. Since then, the brand has remained committed to manufacturing clean, safe and effective herbal solutions for the entire journey of motherhood, including pregnancy, breastfeeding and baby care, and even the loss of a baby.

Bravado Designs: Soothing sounds for a good night's sleep

With 28 years of serving pregnant and postpartum mamas under their belt, Bravado Designs is a true authority on the needs of changing bodies. It's true that we have them to thank for rescuing us from the uncomfortable and frumpy designs our own moms had to live with. Launched in Canada by two young mamas, they designed the first prototypes with extra leopard print fabric certain that a better bra was possible. Throughout the years they've maintained their commitment to ethical manufacturing while creating long-lasting products that truly work.

The Sill: Instagram-ready potted plants

We've long admired this female-founded brand and the brilliant mind behind it, Eliza Blank. (She even joined Motherly co-founder Liz Tenety on and episode of The Motherly Podcast!) The mission behind the business was simple: To make the process of bringing plants into your home as easy as possible, and as wonderful as the plant themselves. With their in-house, exclusively designed minimalist planters, the end result makes plant parenthood just a few clicks away.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

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A few years ago, while my wife's baby bump got bigger and my daddy reading list grew longer, I felt cautiously optimistic that this parenthood thing would, somehow, suddenly click one day. The baby would come, instincts would kick in, and the transition from established couple to a new family would be tiring but not baffling.

Boy was I wrong.

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