Child Care Grant

The journey to motherhood can be a difficult one for mom athletes. Find out how Olympian Allyson Felix is changing that narrative along with Athleta and the Women's Sports Foundation.

Video Transcript


KALEO MACLAY: In the past, there's been so much fear surrounding motherhood and being an athlete. I hope that as we talk about it more, it becomes less about fear and then just being able to see that it's been done before.

ALLYSON FELIX: I hope that there aren't as many barriers for women, I hope that women are able to have their own decision when they want to start families and that they'll be supported no matter what.

- US scores and wins the gold.

KALEO MACLAY: Being a two time gold medalist is the craziest feeling, going into this game. It really showed our ability to push through adversity and I think it's really apparent as moms to our ability to push through adversity.

ELANA MEYERS TAYLOR: I've always wanted to be a mother, that has been the thing that I've always wanted to do but I've always wanted to be an Olympian too. Early in my career, I just didn't think it was possible to have both. During the bobsled season, which is six months out of the year, we are on the road. With me and my husband both competing, we do have to have extra child care services.

My son Nico was born with down syndrome and he was also born with hearing loss. It does add a little bit of challenge for our day to day, I think we estimated it's going to cost somewhere around $50,000 this year, child care alone but our job as parents was just to raise the happiest kindest kid we could.

ALLYSON FELIX: Coming back from having my daughter Cameron, I saw just kind of the first hand difficulties that you have when you are trying to compete at the elite level and also being a mom. It was amazing to be able to partner with Athleta and the Women's Sports Foundation to create the power of She Fund and to be able to support mom athletes in different ways.

KALEO MACLAY: With the financial support of Women's Sports Foundation, it was so beautiful especially going into the games to not have to worry about what my son is doing and is he somewhere that I feel safe with him? Is you somewhere that he enjoys?

It's such a huge relief because it is one of the things that literally hangs over our heads as moms is do we need to be there? Do we need to be helping? It's really incredible that it's financial support but it's also support in the community.

ELANA MEYERS TAYLOR: And especially trying to not only be a new mom but come back as an athlete, there's so many unknowns. So I really relied on some of the other athlete moms I know, like Allyson Felix, to help me through this entire journey. I think one of the things I reach out to is like just breastfeeding. How do you breastfeed and train at the same time? And what do you wear for sports bras and things like that?

ALLYSON FELIX: We really want to support women differently and holistically and when you are supported I think you can be a better mom but also a better athlete.

ELANA MEYERS TAYLOR: The partnership between the Women's Sports Foundation and Athleta has helped me be able to afford expenses to keep Nico with me as long as possible, to have him training with me, have him traveling with me and with us as a family.

KALEO MACLAY: And I'm just very thankful for being able to be an advocate for it, of being a mom and being an athlete and I really hope the next generation doesn't see it as such a fearful thing but as a norm in the culture of sports.

ELANA MEYERS TAYLOR: We're seeing more and more female athletes play into their late 30s and into their 40s and things like that and can you imagine if more women are able to do that? Could you imagine how much more exciting sports would be if women could extend their careers? If we could have 100 female Tom Brady's out there? It would be incredible.


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