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Gabrielle Union Reveals the 'Hardest Part of Being a Working Mom'

·4 min read
Gabrielle Union
Gabrielle Union

Gabrielle Union/instagram

Gabrielle Union is getting real up about one of the most challenging parts of being a busy actress and mother.

In a candid Instagram post on Friday, the Bring It On star, 49, opened up about how career commitments meant she wouldn't be there to cheer on 3-year-old daughter Kaavia James.

"Hardest part about being a working Mom is missing important events in your kid's lives," Union wrote, captioning a series of photos of herself embracing her mini me. "Today I missed @kaaviajames holiday program at school and felt so awful to disappoint her."

Instead, Union — who shares Kaavia James with husband Dwyane Wade — decided to do the "next best thing" and shower her daughter with love and support.

"I did the next best thing and I became her hype woman before I left for work. 🥰🥰🥰🥰🥰," Union wrote.

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Union and Wade have been married since 2014. In addition to Kaavia James, Union is also stepmom to Wade's children, Zaire, 19, Zaya, 14, and Xavier, 8.

Last year, Union penned an essay for Refinery29's No Bad Moms, declaring, "I absolve myself of 'mom guilt.' "

"Coming into the parenting game late, as a 46-year-old rookie with my first biological daughter, Kaavia, I had already experienced the best and the worst of what the world has to offer," Union wrote. "I have decided I'm not going to feel guilty for working. I'm not going to feel guilty for self-care. I'm not going to feel guilty for prioritizing myself, because I know I can't be a great mom if I'm not a great person."

"I refuse to take on guilt," she added. "Because even when you succumb to all the guilt and stress, and you do everything that society tells you you're supposed to do to be a perfect mom, your kid might still get an F. Your son might display misogyny and toxic masculinity. Your daughter may be the absolute opposite of what society says is an acceptable woman. You could be perfect, or you could be less than perfect, and your kids are going to be who they are. All we can do is our best to instill some peace, joy, grace, compassion, and a sense of community. All we can hope is that we raise people who are going to be accountable for themselves."

"We're all built differently, and I have zero guilt about that," she said.

Gabrielle Union-Wade
Gabrielle Union-Wade

Gabrielle Union-Wade/instagram

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The Being Mary Jane alum also told Parents last December that she prioritizes "me time" when it comes to balancing work and her personal life.

"I've had to talk to all of my business partners and just be really transparent, like, 'I want to be my best employee for you or leader for you, but I am going to need some time for me,' " she recalled.

"Everyone has offered me that kind of compassion, that space, and that grace to do what it takes to function," Union continued. "And I just hope more companies and schools offer that time and that space and that grace that we all need to try to figure out how to survive in this pandemic."

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Union and Wade recently showed off their family Thanksgiving on Instagram, sharing a portrait of them posing with their kids in front of a Christmas tree.

"Happy Thanksgiving From The Wades," Union wrote, followed by a string of turkey emojis.

On the couple's respective Instagram Stories, a festive and large Thanksgiving gathering was seen, with Wade taking in the copious amounts of food that was about to be consumed. Union also posted a clip from the family's epic karaoke session held later in the day.

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Meanwhile, Wade recently spoke to PEOPLE about his parenting style and why he allows his children to be themselves.

"I think kids appreciate when you try to get to know them," Wade said in November, while promoting his memoir, Dwyane. "And you know what I've always tried to do with my kids, from Zaire all the way down to Xavier, from Kaav and Zaya, I try to meet them where they're at, and I don't try to always bring them to where I want them to be, or my world."

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