Michelle Obama has been nonstop energy since her family left the White House. She has kept busy with numerous speaking engagements, a best-selling book, and a killer documentary about her life.
Now, she has a new podcast entitled “The Michelle Obama Podcast,” which premiered on July 30. We’re only a few episodes in so far, but she has spilled more tea than we thought a single podcast could contain.
Here are a few of the wildest things we have learned about Michelle and her family thanks to her podcast.
Why Michelle fell in love with Barack Obama
Michelle Obama’s podcast is based around intimate conversations with her guests. And her first guest was none other than her husband Barack Obama.
Over the course of their conversation, they discussed why she fell in love with Barack in the first place.
“One of the reasons I fell in love with you is because you are guided by the principle that we are each other’s brothers’ and sisters’ keepers,” Michelle said.
It was a pretty deep and emotional moment. But this didn’t keep Barack from coming back with a quip: “It wasn’t just my looks… that’s okay.”
This power couple has obviously lost none of their charm in the years since leaving the White House.
Michelle thinks there should be an award for childbirth
Something near and dear to Michelle Obama’s heart are the struggles of women. And while interviewing gynecologist Dr. Sharon Malone, she dropped a bombshell observation.
When discussing the difficulties of giving birth, Michelle said “We got a whole channel dedicated to men throwing a ball in a hoop, and I love sports, I love watching men play sports. I get it.
“But there should be some birthing channels, just some, ‘Did you see what she did, did you see that little woman push a 10-pound baby out? Where’s her ESPY?’ Or there should be an award ceremony!”
Given the uncertain future of sports due to COVID-19, ESPN channels focusing on childbirth may start looking like a good idea!
Michelle reveals she has low-grade depression
Speaking of COVID-19, everyone around the world has been affected. And that includes Michelle Obama and her family.
“I know that I am dealing with some form of low-grade depression,” Michelle revealed on episode #2 of her podcast. “Not just because of the quarantine, but because of the racial strife, and just seeing this administration, watching the hypocrisy of it, day in and day out, is dispiriting,”
However, Michelle opened up about the power of routine to benefit mental health. This is a power she discovered at the height of her husband’s presidency.
“What we learned early on in the White House is that in order to stay sane, and to feel like the human that you once were, is that you have to have a schedule, and a routine,” Michelle said.
That habit has served her well during the pandemic. As she puts it, “schedule has been key.” And no matter how busy the family is, everyone comes together for dinner and activities each night.
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Michelle discusses how the pandemic has affected Sasha and Malia
Understandably, most parents have focused on how the pandemic has negatively affected their children. In her podcast, though, Michelle opened up about some of the unexpected benefits her children have received thanks to life slowing down.
For example, Michelle recounted how Barack Obama taught their daughters how to play Spades as a daily competition. “They wouldn’t have sat down, but for this quarantine, to learn how to play a card game with their dad. They wouldn’t.”
And quarantine has brought added peace to her daughters’ lives. She says recent events have been “an unburdening for them” that brought “calm.” Ultimately, “they needed the world to stop a little bit.”
Michelle champions essential workers
In case you were wondering, Michelle isn’t afraid of getting political on her podcast. And this includes her thoughts on society’s treatment of “essential” workers.
When her guest Michelle Norris mentioned that we aren’t really treating essential workers like we should, Michelle Obama went off.
“A lot of these people are broke,” she said. “They don’t have health insurance…. If they were to get sick, as essential as they are, we have not, as a society, deemed it essential to make sure that they can go to the doctor and get the care that they need.”
She continued, “And even if they can get COVID care, even if they can get tested, to keep working and doing our stuff, after the effects of the virus have worn off, and they are dealing with some lung issue, or some breathing issue, or asthma, that they don’t have to wait, in a, an emergency room, for hours on end, and then worry that they can even afford the prescription medication that they need to survive.”
While she didn’t stump for something as politically-charged as Medicare For All, it seems Michelle Obama understands the need to change the current system.
Michelle turns off the news to protect her mental health
Sometimes, Michelle Obama’s life lessons are both simple and elegant. Regarding the constant influx of negative news, she discussed the many benefits of temporarily tuning the negativity out.
She realized that taking in negative news meant needing to consume something positive, but sometimes the most positive thing she could do was to not take on the negativity.
“And sometimes for me that means turning it off,” Michelle said. “Right, it means turning off the phone, not taking in the news, because it is negative energy.”
Michelle acknowledged that we can’t just tune the world out for a long time, but it is sometimes necessary for our short-term mental health. “But for me, for my mental health, there’s some times I cannot look. I need to just take a moment, and to just not look.”
Michelle believes in being open about sexual education with your children
Sometimes, Michelle takes a hard stance on some controversial issues. For instance, she is a big believer in offering children a robust sexual education at home.
This is easier said than done, though, because it means a parent must open themselves up to a constant stream of uncomfortable questions.
“I always wanted my daughters to feel comfortable with their bodies, comfortable asking questions,” Michelle said. “And in order to do that, you can’t have anything that’s off limits, because, especially when kids are young, the minute they see you clenching up about something, they notice that, and they will never ask it again, or they’ll never ask you, and instead they’ll go and talk amongst themselves.”
Of course, there’s a certain practicality to her approach.
“What I told my girls when they were young, is like, I don’t want you learning about your bodies and sex from another twelve year old. None of y’all know what you’re talking about! You’re twelve. Come ask me.”
Michelle doesn’t think men could deal with cramps
Maybe the best thing about Michelle Obama’s podcast is her willingness to “go there.”
When interviewing gynecologist Dr. Sharon Malone, Michelle weighed in on the notion of whether men or women were better at handling pain.
“How many men, do you think, could deal with the severest form of cramps, which, literally feels like, a knife being stabbed, and turned. And then released. And then turned! And then released. And you got to do that, and you got to get up and keep going.”
In her eyes, raising awareness of women’s struggles is one of the best ways to bring everyone together and lift each other up.