All Articles Tagged "football wives"

Mom On The Move: Real Life Football Wife, Maleah Henderson, Part 2

March 15th, 2016 - By Kweli Wright
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Maleah Henderson

Maleah Henderson

Mom On The Move is a weekly profile of a mom mover and shaker. Women we admire, who inspire us and who have amazing stories to share, oh and they happen to have kids, too! While we love to talk about celebrity moms and their fabulous lives, we also love (and need) to know about real moms who are out here doing it all, just as fabulously. This week we’re profiling Maleah Henderson, football wife and so much more.

I’m scheduled to interview Maleah Henderson, mom to a son Lennox, wife to NFL player Erin Henderson (of the Jets) for a good 30 minutes, but it suddenly turns into a full-on sister chat that lasts over an hour. Why? Because Maleah is just an open, sweet and funny spirit and a refreshing person to talk to about life, relationships, spirituality, career goals and of course, motherhood.

The Minnesota-native is at a turning point in her life. Granted, being married to a professional athlete can be a job in itself, but add on a precocious and extremely precious newly five-year-old son and non-stop traveling and you’ve got a busy woman times 10, living in Los Angeles.

“It’s been almost two years now, and it’s gone really quick, but LA feels like home now,” she says. “We never want to leave, it’s terrible, we’d rather people visit from anywhere. We’re addicted to the sunshine.”

Just like us, she balancing it all–some days better than others–but also looking to create a life where she can pursue her passion for helping others.

Read the first part of our interview where Maleah talks about raising son, Lennox.

Mommynoire: How do you feel like you’re balancing motherhood with doing things for yourself?

Maleah Henderson: Everyday there’s so many choices as a mom. I plan on going back to work, sometimes I feel like, so what am I doing? I’m not at the point where I’m like, oh I’m just sitting at home, chilling…I find being a mother so consuming.  I really do commend moms who do all the same stuff that I do, go to work, and then have to come back home and handle the rest of the stuff. It’s not easy, but especially when you’re at stay at home mom, people just look at you like, oh she must just be sipping Martini’s and shopping online.  I don’t know what people think I do but it’s not like that at all. I’m always preparing for what I’m going to do with Lennox later or what needs to be done right now. I’m grateful to be able to stay home, but I am working towards exactly what I’m doing in the next year.

What did you love about your work life before Lennox? 

I worked in television production, it was alot of fun but very long hours. A lot of my friends are still in that industry in Atlanta and Los Angeles and they’re always trying to offer me positions. It’s just such a consuming job and you can’t explain that to a four-year-old. Also, with me being the primary parent when my husband is playing football, it’s hard to juggle that work and parent-teacher meetings and just being there for my son.

Maleah Henderson and son Lennox

Maleah Henderson and son Lennox

What about keeping him busy with playdates?

Women run themselves ragged trying to keep up with these playdates. There’s enough to do as women–I’m just trying to keep myself sane and read a book. (laughs) I say, “You’re at school a big chunk of the day, get your playtime in then, dude.” 

So what keeps you sane, what do you like to do for yourself?

Since we moved to Los Angeles, I found a lot of outlets for my spirituality.  It’s really an open place, in some ways it’s too open. Everyone is super-conscious of what they eat and what they drink and how they look, but there is a higher-consciousness community where people are very aware of their relationship with God, and I’ve found it really comforting especially when I feel like I’m about to lose my mind. This football season was hectic, traveling back and forth was absolutely nuts. If there was an away-game I’d go to those and keep my baby with me and have to also keep him on track with his classwork.

The spiritual lecturer Marianne Williamson, she’s written a million books and she has a lecture every Monday night in Los Angeles, and she talks about the book, A Course in Miracles. It’s a nice meeting and it helps keep me grounded…it’s so nice see a woman who is so sure of herself. She’s really passionate about women, and I’m very passionate about helping women and children as well.

What specifically about women and girls do you feel passionate about?

I just think that women don’t truly support each other as much as we should. It’s so hard to be a woman of color than a lot of other things. Find compassion for everyone in her unique situation. You gotta be there for people. In between going to these lectures, we also go to this church called Agape and everything is based on love.

I recently talked to my husband about this–he thinks I would be good at starting my own business–but since I have more of a passion for helping people, specifically mothers and girls with their confidence, I’m trying to figure out the most effective way to do it.

I volunteered at different shelters throughout the last year and have been trying to figure out what is the biggest area of need that a person like me could be helpful.

What’s your schedule like?

I’m busy all day, but I tend to stay up very very late, that’s when I read, watch TV, or just sit and think. I work better when nobody else is up, and it’s quiet.

What’s most challenging for you at this turning point in your life, personally?

I can’t speak for all women, but I think it’s easy to look at a woman and say, “Oh she’s got an easy life, and she’s a pretty girl, and that’s all there is to her.” And my life was not just laid-out for me like that. I grew up in Minnesota. I had a very, very tough road to where I am right now, and I don’t have a problem sharing that with people. Women like to say the things that sound good, but it’s important to be honest. That fluff is not what it’s like all the time. You get tired, you get frustrated, you get mad…there’s a lot of things that happen and sometimes women pretend like it doesn’t, just to look good.

I don’t have a problem sharing my story, especially when I feel like it can encourage someone to keep going. My goal is to find a way to do that, it’s what I’m passionate about.

I have never done my own venture, and I’m grateful for being able to be home with my son, but I’m also excited about the opportunity to be able to give back. My thing has always been the same about helping people with their relationships and women who need help getting on their own two feet.

 

Mom On The Move: Real Life Football Wife, Maleah Henderson

March 14th, 2016 - By Kweli Wright
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Maleah Henderson

Maleah Henderson

Mom On The Move is a weekly profile of a mom mover and shaker. Women we admire, who inspire us and who have amazing stories to share, oh and they happen to have kids, too! While we love to talk about celebrity moms and their fabulous lives, we also love (and need) to know about real moms who are out here doing it all, just as fabulously. This week we’re profiling Maleah Henderson, wife to an NFL player and so much more.

I’m scheduled to interview Maleah Henderson, mom to a son Lennox, wife to NFL player Erin Henderson (of the Jets) for a good 30 minutes, but it suddenly turns into a full-on sister chat that lasts over an hour. Why? Because Maleah is just an open, sweet and funny spirit and a refreshing person to talk to about life, relationships, spirituality, career goals and of course, motherhood.

The Minnesota-native is at a turning point in her life. Granted, being married to a professional athlete can be a job in itself, but add on a precocious and extremely precious five-year-old son and non-stop traveling and you’ve got a busy woman times 10. Just like us, she balancing it all–some days better than others–but also looking to create a life where she can pursue her passion for helping others.

Maleah Henderson and son Lennox

Maleah Henderson and son Lennox

Read on below where we first talked about motherhood and how she and her husband are raising their son:

Mommynoire: How do you balance it all, being a mom, a wife, and whatever else you have going on?

Maleah Henderson: I used to work in television, I worked for BET for a long time, but once I had (my son) Lennox, I haven’t worked like an actual go to work job since I was pregnant, and I miss it, but I also don’t want to take time from him just to do any old thing. Mostly what I do is being a mom and a wife, and it’s still super important to me to just be Maleah too, on top of all those things.

Balancing it is just… my husband played in New York and we lived in California and so we went back and forth the whole year. We just recently got our place in California and just gotten Lennox into this school we were really excited about and it was like, oh, he’s going to be playing in New York. Great.

I see it a lot–because it’s not a unique situation, people go through this all the time–especially in the NFL where the women just pick up and they move everything (if their husband is traded to another team/city), but it’s so up and down and I didn’t feel comfortable being like, Ok, now we’re going to be living back in New Jersey. It wasn’t a choice, but this is our life. So I spend a lot of time with my sister and one of my best friends who live in California. We all spend a lot of time with Lennox together because throughout the week, during the football season, my husband is not here. So I also make sure to spend time on myself so I don’t feel like I’m living for my husband or for my son, only, because that is not how you stay happy.

Maleah Henderson and son Lennox

Maleah Henderson and son Lennox

Yes, that will drive you crazy trying to get meals on the table and make sure everyone has clean underwear, and the house looks nice and then you forget about yourself…

MH: Sometimes when women decide to get married and have children, they don’t realize all the work involved in a family, because you’re doing things based on “I’m in love” and “I would love to be somebody’s mother.” I never looked at it like, Oh, I’m going to have a baby and he’s going to be so cute… I’ve always raised him and been very aware that he’s going to be a big person (he’s tall for his age now), and he’s a young Black man, and everything that I do every day is to gear him towards that and not being ‘mama’s baby’ because that’s not how successful young men are made.

Just from the little I know of you, you and your son seem so close…

MH: Don’t get me wrong, my son is definitely a mama’s boy, but everything that I do is making sure he has manners and he’s nice to people and grateful…I can see him being 21-years-old, and I don’t want him to be that type of person that people are like, oh man here comes Lennox again, like he’s a troublemaker or has a smart mouth. That’s really, really important to me. With my husband being in the NFL and my brother-in-law having been in the NFL–and Lennox is the only boy that has been born into their family since either one of them–I feel like there’s going to be an expectation for him to play football. It’s not from our families, but from people in general looking to see: Is he going to be good at football? Is he going to be a linebacker?

It’s important that I put Lennox in front of enough things where he can figure out what he wants to do. Of course Lennox looks up to his dad, and of course he likes sports, he’s super physical. But it’s also important to me that he’s cultured. We’re able to do more with and for him than either me or his dad was able to experience when we were children, that’s really important to me and Erin.

How else to you make sure your son has a well-rounded life?

MH: I want my son to be as normal as possible. And actually he’s not normal, he’s very funny and mature for his age. People stare at him and he says the craziest things and I’m trying to keep him grounded, but I don’t want to break his little spirit. It’s a balance because I don’t want him to be hyper-aware that we may be better set than people in our family and/or friends. I want him to see himself as part of a collective. He is a reflection of me trying my hardest.

Lennox very loving and helpful, he shares really well, but he’s crazy (laughs). I’m very strict when it comes to jump on furniture and when he’s around other kids, he’ll start and then look at me and stop. 

You ever watch those nanny 911 shows when people wait until their kids are five-years-old to teach them to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’? That’s not us. He has great manners since he was a baby. In his classroom, he’s not in kindergarten yet, he can read and have a conversation like an adult.

Raising a Black son in America is probably one of the most challenging things, not because of the kids, but because of what the have to face in society…

With the climate with what is happening in our country with little Black boys, I don’t mean to be a Debbie Downer, but I can’t afford to have him thinking he has the same privileges as everyone else. That’s just the reality of the world we live in today.

He’s also a beautiful little boy, but I don’t want people focusing on that either. In this entertainment industry all people focus on is how people look and what they have. I want him to be able to give back to the world instead of being fine. I know he’s only four-years-old, but I think about these things.

Read Part 2 of this interview tomorrow where we chat with Maleah about redefining yourself and your career after motherhood.

Cancelled! Relationships That Couldn’t Survive Reality T.V.

July 17th, 2012 - By Nicole Akoukou Thompson
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Source: tvlistings.zap2it.com

Slowly but surely, reality television has dominated the airwaves, and we, viewers, have witnessed our fair share of relationships unfold and crumble under the sallow lights of television-fame. The constant exposure, desire to intrigue and need to create “authentic” moments often causes gigantic rifts between friendships and couples…even within iconic relationships. Jon & Kate, Britney Spears & Kevin Federline and Hulk & Linda Hogan have all fallen victim to the side effects of lime-light living, but they aren’t the only ones.

Diary Presents Brandy: Special Delivery: Brandy Norwood & Robert “Big Bert” Smith

Brandy Norwood & Robert Smith

usmagazine.com

The Grammy Award winning songstress, Brandy Norwood began her entertainment career as a 14-year old on the short-lived sitcom, “Thea” in 1993. Since, the actress/singer/dancer launched a successful singing career, which is where she has garnered the bulk of her success. While working on her third studio album, Full Moon, with Dark Child producer and composer Robert Smith, she became romantically involved with him, and eventually pregnant. In lieu of the pregnancy, the pop star and her “husband” decided to televise their love and home life on MTV’s Diary Presents Brandy: Special Delivery, where she documented the final months of pregnancy and birth of her daughter Sy’rai. Not long afterward, the two announced their separation, and later came clean about NEVER having been married in the first place. The nuptials were staged to help Brandy preserve her public image.

Sigh, The Trophy Wife Phenomenon Is Real: Men With Hot Wives Get The Jobs

June 5th, 2012 - By Brande Victorian
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Okay so we kind of knew the whole trophy wife theory wasn’t totally baseless, but it was still sort of an unspoken element of business practices and decisions. Your spouse is a reflection of you, men who want to move up the corporate ladder should have an equal partner on their side—and it wouldn’t hurt if she was arm candy too—but I’m not sure it was ever understood to be the deciding factor in the hiring process, at least not openly.

Vanderbilt’s head football coach has blown the whole top off of this phenomenon with a comment he made during an appearance on 104.5 The Zone. James Franklin very calmly, and without reservation, told host Clay Travis that his candidate’s appearance isn’t the only thing he’s critiquing during the hiring process, he’s also checking out his wife.

“I’ve been saying it for a long time, I will not hire an assistant until I see his wife. If she looks the part and she’s a D1 recruit, then you got a chance to get hired. That’s part of the deal. There’s a very strong correlation between having the confidence, going up and talking to a women, and being quick on your feet and having some personality and confidence and being articulate and confident, than it is walking into a high school and recruiting a kid and selling him.”

I want to ride with Franklin on this because I somewhat like his point about men and confidence and approaching women, but the shallowness of what he’s saying is making it hard for me to fight the urge to gag. It’s clear from his comment that a D1 recruit is another word for barbie doll and men, but more so the women with them, are essentially being judged on how attractive they are as proof that a man didn’t just settle for any old woman, or God forbid care about her brain more than some other b words.

The Business Insider took a less superficial take on the role women play in their husband’s hiring process by pointing out that this element is more important the higher you climb in your career and the more male dominant the industry is.

“The general rule of thumb is that the spouse starts becoming a factor once you start getting into leadership positions, especially with smaller companies where great sacrifices might be required on the part of families—that’s when the hiring executive wants to meet Mrs. Candidate, more often than not to gauge whether she’ll be supportive of the sacrifices required, and also to sell her in to the promise of the role, etc.”

That I can stand behind, but when it comes to looks being used to prove a man is a true go-getter or more ambitious, I’m not feeling it.

What do you think about wives being judged as part of the hiring process in certain fields and for certain positions?

Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.

More on Madame Noire!

This Ain’t VH1’s Version: The Real Real Football Wives of The NFL

December 14th, 2011 - By MN Editor
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Have you ever wondered why these reality shows that claim to document the lives of women married to high profile sports celebrities (hence, the term wives) never include actual women who are married? It’s a wonder, especially since we know a lot of these married women would love to get some of the attention too. Here are women who may fly under the radar as celebrities but who are nonetheless actually married to the NFL.

"plaxico burgess"

Tiffany Burress, wife of Plaxico Burress, who is the wide receiver for the New York Jets. Tiffany is also a personal injury lawyer. Many would remember the Burress name from that embarrassing incident in which he shot himself in the thigh at a New York city nightclub in 2008.

Deion Sanders Serves Wife Pilar with Divorce Papers

September 25th, 2011 - By madamenoire
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Yet another union chronicled on reality television has gone by the wayside. Former football and baseball superstar Deion Sanders has filed for divorce from his model/actress wife Pilar Sanders. You might recall that the couple had a reality show a couple years back on the Oxygen network. Pilar was also a castmember on  Football Wives, Shaunie O’Neal’s gridiron version of her popular Basketball Wives series.

In a Hello Beautiful exclusive, Pilar said she was shocked by the whole thing:

It’s unfortunate that my husband decided to take this course of action…I’m surprised and hurt… As I said to my children, we must take a minute breath and Trust God.

Head over to Hello Beautiful to see what Pilar has been up to lately on the business front outside of reality television. Since she’ll be a single mom soon, she has to keep that income flowing in (beyond child support) and set a good example for her children in terms of being a confident, independent woman.

Are you surprised by this split?

WAIT! Check These Out!

Celebs Who Should Have Reality Shows

January 9th, 2011 - By Miss Understood
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Love them or hate them, it looks like reality shows will be sticking around for a long time into the future. Toni Braxton will soon be the latest celeb to star in her own reality show. It might actually be good too! She’s had a lot going on with her fairly recent divorce, her health issues, her second bankruptcy and her offer from Playboy to grace the cover. Braxton’s sisters will be joining  her on the show too. We’re looking forward to seeing the series, but there are a few more celebs who we’d like to see with their own reality shows. Everybody else has one, why can’t they?

Check it!

‘Football Wife’ Chanita Foster Has Advice for Groupies and Other Wives

December 10th, 2010 - By Demetria Irwin
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Chanita Foster, wife of NFL tackle George Foster and co-star of VH1’s reality show “Football Wives,” offered up a few words about athletes and cheating:

“A basketball wife has more opportunities to get cheated on than a football wife.The NBA has 84 games a year, that’s 42 opportunities [for a basketball player] to do what they want in another city. The NFL has a total of 16 games, and eight of them you leave on Saturday, play, and come back on Sunday. Basketball players can have a game, and then too much time and opportunity to be promiscuous, especially in cities like LA, Miami, and Atlanta where they arrive a week and a half before they have to play.”

This is useful information for  fellow wives, but groupies just might be taking notes too.

See what else Chanita had to say  about trusting her husband and the realities of being married to an athlete by clicking here.