The best-selling female rapper of all time, Nicki Minaj, whose confidence radiates through her music, has opened up to Vogue regarding the doubts and fears associated with motherhood.
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“There’s no such thing as confidence in parenthood,” the 10x GRAMMY-nominee says. “I kind of wish that someone had told me -- although I’m sure I wouldn’t have been able to understand it – that there’s a level of anxiety, and you think it’s going to go away, but in fact it gets scarier. So often you think: I don’t know how to do this!”
Minaj has a three-year-old son with her husband, Kenneth Petty. Though they haven’t shared their child’s legal name with the public, they have revealed his nickname, “Papa Bear.” While Papa Bear was an infant, Minaj and Petty were essentially on their own, except for when a grandparent quickly stopped by. The “Anaconda” rapper, who has toured the world three times, explained how Papa Bear’s newborn stage was the most exhausting period of her life. “There are questions that you can’t just google,” she told Vogue.
Minaj would like to use social media as a space to swap tips and stories with other mothers so that some of the "ungoogleable" questions could find quicker answers. Connecting with other mothers might also help eliminate some of the isolation that many new moms often experience. Minaj credits another mother she once met for helping her find her way back to music after previously believing having a family would lead to her retirement.
The other mother Minaj referenced was a self-proclaimed “world’s best homemaker.” However, even though her house was spotless, and her children were all in line, she still felt guilty for not working. She then became a nurse but soon felt the guilt come on again for missing out on key moments with her kids. Upon speaking with this mother, Minaj realized, “If I’m going to have mom guilt regardless, I might as well continue doing the only thing I know how to freaking do, which is make music.”
Minaj is now navigating the life of a working mom, with her fifth studio album, Pink Friday 2, set for release on December 8, 2023. Even though returning to work has undoubtedly introduced a brand new set of challenges, Minaj tries to keep things in perspective. “So now, if I find myself trying to control it all, I try to remember what’s really important,” she said. “I look in my son’s face, and my whole soul lights up. He has no clue how nerve-racking it’s been for me to be a mother and an artist.”
While Minaj’s superstardom has led to a life unrelatable to most, motherhood has initiated her into a diverse club of women who experience similar challenges that come along with loving and raising a child. “Every day a mom has to wake up and be a supermom no matter what they’re faced with,” she said. From “Super Bass” to Supermom, Minaj has remained the outspoken personality that has kept it real with fans for more than a decade.