Kelly Rowland on Juggling Work With Not Wanting to 'Miss a Thing' as a Mom

Kelly Rowland playing outside with Boys & Girls Club of America youth

What else is there to say about Kelly Rowland? She's a songstress, a Grammy award winner, a philanthropist, a wife, and a mother to an adorable 17-month-old son named Titan. Kelly is a fierce woman who's seen many aspects of her destiny fulfilled, and continues to make a path for others chasing after their dreams. And now, her latest venture is a super cool collaboration with the goal of getting more kids outdoors.

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As a longtime supporter of the Boys & Girls Club and a Claritin spokesperson, Kelly says she was excited when the organization and company joined forces to transform some of the Club's outdoor spaces across the country. With only one in three children physically active each day, and most kids spending close to eight hours in front of a screen, this initiative, which allows more youth to enjoy the outdoors, hits a home run.

We recently caught up with Kelly Rowland to talk about her project, how she juggles motherhood and her career, her life with a toddler, and -- oh, yes -- her go-to cocktail of choice.

Kelly Rowland at the Boys & Girls Club of America/Claritin event
 
Why do you think it's important for kids to play outside?
I just feel like you enjoy your childhood outside. Some of my best memories of being a kid are outside. One major one, of course, is playing outside and not coming in until the streetlights came on. Sunshine, and being able to run and exercise ... just enjoying the light outside. I just think all those things are really important.
 
Kelly Rowland playing outside with Boys & Girls Club of America youth
 
Did you have any favorite games to play outside when you were growing up? Were you into freeze tag?
We did everything. But I think my favorite thing to do was play in the huge field in the back of my great aunt's house. I remember us just going wild back there! She had a garden on one side, and then it was nothing but just trees in the back. We could go back there and just be lost until we had to find our way back home. I remember honeysuckles from the garden, getting poison ivy on my shins and legs. I just have so many great memories.
 
 
What has been your fondest memory to date working with Claritin and the Boys & Girls Club of America?
The Youth of the Year event the Boys & Girls Club of America does annually. It's so amazing to listen to all these kids talk about their circumstances, where they've come from, what they want to do with their life, how they want to change the world, how they feel a responsibility to be great, and how they want to be leaders. I just find that so impressive, especially to be so young in a world that tries to define who they are. And in this case, they know who they are before the world tells them who they are -- and I think the Boys & Girls Club of America are a great part of that.
 

Kelly Rowland at the Boys & Girls Club of America/Claritin event

Between that project, Chasing Destiny [Kelly's new show on BET], your work on the FOX hit Empire, recording a new album, and your endless line of endorsements, how the heck do you do it all as a working mother?
You know what? I literally take it one day at a time -- I'm still learning. I miss my son right now. You know what I mean? I just wrapped a meeting, and before that I had a meeting, and before that I had an event I had to go to for Baby2Baby, which is another charity that means a lot to me. But I was able to take Titan to that event.
 
I think time management definitely helps, but I'm still learning how to manage my time. I want to spend every second that I have with Titan, but he also needs a place to stay and clothes and shoes and food, and I want to make sure that his stability and comfort are taken care of -- because he means the world to me. That's why I work so hard.
 
How has being a mom changed you?
I have patience I never knew I had.

Amen to motherhood for that.
That was the one thing that made me very apprehensive about motherhood. I was like, OMG, I'm the person with no patience. How am I going to get through this? What if I'm tired of hearing him cry? What if in the middle of the night -- and it's the third night I haven't slept -- I have to wake up and breastfeed? I just really almost drove myself crazy thinking about all the possibilities of when I wouldn't rise to the occasion, but I always did.
 
And not only that, I have a wonderful husband [Tim Witherspoon]. I have people around me who are incredibly supportive and help me with my son. I think having a support system is definitely a blessing.
 

And speaking of Tim, how has seeing him take on his new role as Dad changed how you look at him?
Oh -- he's um, he's even cuter than before. I mean, I knew he was cute before, but he's extremely sexy now. The way he is with our son, and how he just loves his family so much ... ah. God really sent me a good one.

What advice can you give to other moms?
Have fun while you're being a mother. You should always have fun with your kid. For me, I try to pay attention to every single thing Titan is doing. When he's speaking, when he's looking at things, when he's discovering the world. I don't want to ... I try not to miss a thing.  And, just always be there. Keep the line of communication open -- we talk about everything.

How has life been with a toddler?
Oh! It's getting very interesting, especially since he's only 17 months and knows everything. If he grabs the phone and is pressing buttons, I'm like, "Titan, Titan, can Mommy have that? I don't want you to have that." And he turns around and says to me, "NOOOOOO-AH!" (Laughs) He's very defiant.
 

A photo posted by kellyrowland (@kellyrowland) on

 

All right, Kelly, let's have some fun, girl. Finish this sentence: Folks would be shocked to know that I'm the type of mom who ...
Uh ... oh my goodness. Has gotten poop up my arm from my kid and kinda just let it sit there. I was trying to change him, and was like This is horrible! That was probably my most non-glamorous moment ever.

Name the movie or song that best describes your life right now.
Hmm. Ah ... movie or song, movie or song! "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" by Aerosmith.

Aww! That's a good one!
It's true!

What's the one thing that will turn you into mama bear real quick?
If a kid were to push my kid. (Laughs) Yeah. That would really push me into mama bear mode real quick!

What's been the funniest parenting fail or "oops" you committed to date?
When Titan said "Dada," I thought that I scarred him for life. I was literally like, "OH MY GOD!" He looked at me and looked so freaked out. I said to myself, Oh, great. Now he's not going to say anything, because I scared the heck out of him. So that was probably my biggest oops. I was just so excited and thought it was a big deal.

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What are three must-have items for Titan that you need in stock 24/7?
Ooh. Organic puffs, a car, and his little sippy cup -- he loves water.

Speaking of beverages, what is your favorite cocktail of choice?
Whiskey sour. Definitely.

Team Fitz or Team Jake -- 'cause I know you watch Scandal.
Ooooh! Ugh, right now? Definitely Jake, I don't want her [Olivia Pope] with Fitz.

I know, girl.
(Laughs)

Favorite thing to do on a Friday or Saturday night?
Eat!
 

(Laughs) And, what do you eat?
Like pizza ... and burgers ... nachos ... Mexican food.

 

 

 

Images via Desiree Navarro/WireImage; Marcus Ingram/Getty Images for Claritin; Theo Wargo/Getty Images
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