The best lessons on motherhood from the mayor of DC, who is looking after the nation’s capital through the coronavirus crisis while raising a 2-year-old daughter as a single mum

Muriel Bowser and her 2-year-old daughter Miranda. Muriel Bowser
  • Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser isn’t just leading the nation’s capital through a pandemic, she’s serving as a political leader while being a single mum.
  • Bowser adopted her daughter, 2-year-old Miranda, in May 2018.
  • She’s been open about the rewards and challenges of single motherhood, and motherhood in general.
  • In honour of Mother’s Day, Business Insider highlights six lesson from the mayor on what it’s like being called “Mum.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Mayor Muriel Bowser has two jobs right now: leading the nation’s capital through a pandemic, and caring for her 2-year-old daughter, Miranda, as a single mother.

While her workload and professional responsibilities drastically differ from most, she and millions of mothers across the US, have something in common: their personal lives have shifted due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Normally, for example, Bowser and Miranda, who she adopted in May 2018, have their weekends to catch up on play time. But these past few weeks look a bit different, she told CNN. Miranda’s highchair is now in Bowser’s home office, where the mayor has been working through the weekends. And the TV is on a bit more than usual.

“It was different because normally she wouldn’t be in my office and I wouldn’t let her watch TV, but we had to figure out how to make that work because I had some work that I had to get done, and she adjusted it,” she told CNN.

It’s just one of many times Bowser has been candid about juggling work while being a single mother. Since adopting Miranda, the mayor has been open about her personal life. In honour of Mother’s Day, here are six lessons from Bowser on being a mum and raising a child on her own.

Being a single mum is no easy feat, and sometimes you need to rely on friends and family to help you get by.

In a surprise announcement in late May of 2018, Mayor Muriel Bowser announced she had adopted Miranda several days earlier. Here the two are pictured in December of 2018. Getty Images

“I have learned how hard it is,” Bowser said in an interview with Washington D.C’s Fox 5. “I’m lucky that I have a great family, a great set of friends. I have a great team at the office as well. We haven’t dropped the ball in any respects. But I have had to learn how to get a lot packed into shorter time.”

She makes sure she has special one-on-one time with her daughter, usually in the mornings before work gets too busy.

Bowser sometimes brings Miranda to work events, especially when she works weekends. Muriel Bowser

“When I’m with Miranda in the morning, that is just our time. To wake up, get her dressed, read to her in the morning, and I try not to be interrupted. That’s not always possible; We’ll make up for that time,” she told American University radio WAMU.

Deciding who should care for your child when you’re at work is a difficult decision.

Bowser has said her parents sometimes help her with child care. Muriel Bowser

“I have taken a crash course in how to manage child care and picked the right options for my daughter, and I realised how much of an excruciating, in some ways, decision that it is. You got to leave her and you got to trust somebody to love her as much, and that is not easy,” she told Fox 5.

Juggling a full-time job and being a mum can be a lot to manage.

Mayor Bowser and Miranda pictured on October 05, 2019. Getty Images

“I won’t say it’s always easy because there are always a lot of competing demands,” Bowser told WAMU.

She is “grateful” for the lessons her daughter has taught her.

Lately, the mayor has been working more nights and weekends due to the novel coronavirus. Muriel Bowser

“I knew that I had a lot of love to pour into a child,” she told TODAY.

When she announced her adoption, Bowser has called moments with her daughter “precious,” saying she’s so “grateful” to be a mum.

She has big dreams for her daughter’s future and wants her to know that she worked hard.

Mayor Bowser and Miranda out enjoying some quality time together. Muriel Bowser

“I want her to be able to say that my mum worked hard,” Bowser told Fox 5.