Mamas At Work: La La On Her Son Being Her Best Friend And The Beauty Of Doing Nothing As Self-Care


Michael Simon

When I connect with La La Anthony for a Zoom chat the Friday afternoon before the Super Bowl, she is in Las Vegas, “ready for the craziness.” Before touching down there, the star was working in San Francisco, where Airbnb is based, after being announced as the creative advisor for the online marketplace for home-stays.

“It’s the usual ripping and running, but all good stuff,” says La La, who does “ripping and running” regularly as an actress, producer, author, entrepreneur and more.

“I love what I do. So that’s always a great thing,” she tells ESSENCE when asked how she finds a balance between her work and home life. “When you love what you do, you figure it out, you make it a priority. But the way my life is set up, Kiyan is first.”

Kiyan is her 16-year-old son shared with ex-husband and retired NBA star Carmelo Anthony. A basketball star like his father, La La is often photographed court side at his basketball games and tournaments. Pairing that commitment with her work around the country, all that movement can do a doozy on the body, particularly during the current cold and flu season.

Mamas At Work: La La On Her Son Being Her Best Friend And The Beauty Of Doing Nothing As Self-Care
– New York, NY – 12/06/2023 – La La Anthony partners with Delsym to bring comfort home this cough season with family favorite recipes.

-PICTURED: La La Anthony
-PHOTO by: Michael Simon/startraksphoto.com
-MS5866
Editorial – Rights Managed Image – Please contact www.startraksphoto.com for licensing fee Startraks Photo
Startraks Photo
New York, NY
For licensing please call 212-414-9464 or email sales@startraksphoto.com
Image may not be published in any way that is or might be deemed defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification or question you may have
Startraks Photo reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this image. If you violate our intellectual property you may be liable for actual damages, loss of income, and profits you derive from the use of this image, and where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or statutory damages.

“You know how these boys are, so it definitely usually starts with [Kiyan], and then it kind of goes around. But what’s great is that I love using Delsym, especially when the cough starts making its way around the house,” says the star who is partnering with the cough relief medicine brand to help people bounce back faster from illness this winter. “Kiyan loves Delsym. It’s the number one doctor recommended 12-hour cough suppressant, and it works, and what’s so great is that we both just love it. So, it’s a staple in our household for sure and definitely has us feeling better and able to get out there and do what we need to do because him with basketball and me with my crazy life, you don’t want to be down — you can’t even afford to be down.”

In addition to the cough suppressant, she has go-to comfort meals that do the trick: arroz con pollo and a Puerto Rican chicken soup recipe, both connected to her Afro-Puerto Rican roots. “I’m not a five-star Michelin chef or anything like that, but I can do the basics so that it’s going to taste good, and, most importantly, we’re going to feel better.”

Cooking, though not her favorite thing to do, has become a moment she can share with Kiyan. Kitchen time allows her to teach him how to cook for himself as well as enjoy quality time with her kiddo, who is growing up fast.

“I always tell Kiyan, ‘If you want all that fancy stuff, you got to learn how to cook,’” she says. “So we sometimes make it fun. We’ll find a meal and cook it together and just play around with different recipes. And it just gives us time as a mom and son to bond together.”

Mamas At Work: La La On Her Son Being Her Best Friend And The Beauty Of Doing Nothing As Self-Care
– New York, NY – 12/06/2023 – La La Anthony partners with Delsym to bring comfort home this cough season with family favorite recipes.

-PICTURED: La La Anthony
-PHOTO by: Michael Simon/startraksphoto.com
-MS5882
Editorial – Rights Managed Image – Please contact www.startraksphoto.com for licensing fee Startraks Photo
Startraks Photo
New York, NY
For licensing please call 212-414-9464 or email sales@startraksphoto.com
Image may not be published in any way that is or might be deemed defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification or question you may have
Startraks Photo reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this image. If you violate our intellectual property you may be liable for actual damages, loss of income, and profits you derive from the use of this image, and where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or statutory damages.

Those moments are more important than ever, as Kiyan, who turns 17 in March, is getting closer to flying the nest for college and adulthood.

“I’m having a hard time with that. I’m going to be honest with you,” she says. “I try not to think about it even though I know it’s there. Kiyan and I spend an incredible amount of time together. I always say my son is my best friend. We do a lot together. But I just think about when he does go to college, how it is going to be different. And I understand now when parents go through that, it is a tough transition. So I’m just trying to get all the time I can now and just preparing myself.”

So in the midst of a busy schedule, La La makes sure she shows up for Kiyan’s games, which she says are “super intense” as they’re often televised. In fact, the mom says she plans her schedule around his to make it happen. But when there are moments where she just can’t be present, she’s glad to have family who can step in.

“I want him to always feel like his mom was there for his major moments and his school stuff and whatever he needed. So I try to really work around what he has going on, but it’s hectic,” she admits. “I’m just grateful I have a family that steps in and helps me when I need help, and I’m still able to work and be on set and do different things because it can get overwhelming trying to balance and juggle it all or be in a million places at once. But I think somehow you kind of figure out your flow and your rhythm and you find what works.”

Mamas At Work: La La On Her Son Being Her Best Friend And The Beauty Of Doing Nothing As Self-Care
– New York, NY – 12/06/2023 – La La Anthony partners with Delsym to bring comfort home this cough season with family favorite recipes.

-PICTURED: La La Anthony
-PHOTO by: Michael Simon/startraksphoto.com
-MS5892
Editorial – Rights Managed Image – Please contact www.startraksphoto.com for licensing fee Startraks Photo
Startraks Photo
New York, NY
For licensing please call 212-414-9464 or email sales@startraksphoto.com
Image may not be published in any way that is or might be deemed defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification or question you may have
Startraks Photo reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this image. If you violate our intellectual property you may be liable for actual damages, loss of income, and profits you derive from the use of this image, and where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or statutory damages.

Many mothers overwhelmed by the day-to-day can admit to not always prioritizing their own needs. La La has been there. However, with everything she’s balancing, she’s trying to get better about integrating more moments of self-care as an on-the-go mom. She carves out time to work out a few days a week, drink more water and eat healthier. She’s also found joy in simply taking advantage of opportunities to be still. She encourages all moms to embrace doing the same when the rare occasion comes to not do a single thing.

“Because I’m always so busy, doing nothing is such a form of self-care and not even being on the phone, just putting the phone down, watching a TV series that I’m into, lying in the bed, that’s just stuff you don’t get to do often,” La La says. “So you value it so much when you’re able to just do nothing.”



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