Exclusive: Jessica Biel Talks Sick Days, Self-Care, & The ‘Marathon' of Motherhood

Celebrity parents’ lifestyles may be a smidge more glitzy and glamorous than ours (I say this as someone who is currently wearing sweatpants that I may or may not have slept in) — but when it comes to Mom Life, even celebrity moms are just like us. Even celebrity moms like Jessica Biel, who I’d argue is the very epitome of glam.

SheKnows spoke to Biel at the NYC launch of KinderMed, a line of clean children’s medicines that she created with co-founder Jeremy Adams. “I have to admit, I often put myself at the bottom of the totem pole of my family,” Biel told us, and what mom can’t relate? When we’re juggling the needs, schedules, and routines of an entire group of people, our own needs tend to fall by the wayside. And like most moms, she struggles to make time for self-care. “I’m still working on finding that balance for myself,” she confessed. “I’m not great at it.”

Parenting, she told us, “sometimes feels like you’re running a marathon and it’s uphill both ways,” and that some days there are moments when it “feels like it’s swallowing you whole” — a very relatable statement to anyone who has ever been a kid’s caregiver. Their demands get placed before ours consistently, until we feel like we’re trying to wring out a dry sponge.

But while a wholehearted commitment to our kiddos is not always conducive to “me time,” it has translated into something entirely beyond motherhood for Biel — namely a whole career, as co-founder of KinderFarms: the Kinder Farmaceutical Company. With the launch of KinderMed, its clean medicine line developed with a team of scientists and pediatricians, Biel and business partner Adams are hoping to provide parents with the peace of mind that comes from knowing the medicine they’re giving their kids is as safe and natural as possible. They created the brand with their own kids in mind, based on their own experiences as parents.

“[The idea] came from a real life experience that my partner and I, Jeremy, had separately when we were both middle-of-the-night searching for some kind of medication,” Biel told SheKnows. “We were just trying to help our babies feel better. And we couldn’t read these ingredients on the backs of these boxes; we didn’t know what we were looking at.”

This experience, Biel says, raised her “mom red flags.”

“This doesn’t feel right … I don’t know if I trust putting this in my kid’s body,” she explained, noting that Adams felt the same. “We realized that as we kept looking at other different types of medicines in the child and family health care space, everything had all these extra artificial ingredients that didn’t really need to be there. So we started to ask the question, ‘What will happen If we take those out?’”

While most moms may not be at the helm of an entire brand, we are at the helm of an entire family — who all depend on us a little bit extra when they’re sick. And as Biel revealed to SheKnows, things are no different in the household that she shares with husband Justin Timberlake and their sons, Phineas and Silas.

“I hold them and sit with them,” Biel said when asked about her go-to remedies (besides clean medicine, of course!) for her kids’ sick days. Extra attention is always on the roster, and sick days are a perfect excuse to add in some quality time: “We do a lot of movie watching at my house, we listen to music, we play games … and we do a lot more of that when they’re sick.” It’s so hard when your babies are under the weather, isn’t it?!

That’s something else all moms can relate to — in addition to the overwhelming feeling of, well, overwhelm, there’s also the surprising depth of love. Which, Biel told us, has been one of the most unexpected parts of motherhood … even on those “uphill marathon” days.

“[T]hose little people bring you so much joy and bring out the best qualities in you. And you see the beauty in these little things that you’ve forgotten because of your adult brain,” she said. “I think that’s probably the most surprising part.”

Still, when it’s possible, Biel likes to recharge. And her absolute favorite way to do that sounds like a dream — literally. “I go collapse and have a girls’ weekend with my girlfriends,” she told us. “And we all just sleep the whole time.”

Before you go, check out Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake’s best parenting moments.

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