Drew Barrymore Says Being a Mom Changed Her Life: "I Didn't Know The Meaning of My Life Until I Met Them"

The lifelong entertainer, entrepreneur, and mom of two launched The Drew Barrymore Show today and describes it as "optimism TV."

Drew Barrymore Show
Photo: CBSTD “The Drew Barrymore Show”/Ben Watts

At 11 months old, Drew Barrymore kicked off her storied career in showbiz by auditioning for a dog commercial. At 7 years old, her role in E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial catapulted her to worldwide fame. Now, at 45, the actress, author, entrepreneur, and proud single mom to daughters Olive, 7, and Frankie, 6, says she has never felt more alive or prepared for her next role—hosting her own one-hour nationally syndicated daytime talk show, The Drew Barrymore Show, which premiered today.

"It's not that I would say I didn't deserve a show before, but I think I was better suited to play characters and figure myself out on the side," says Barrymore. "And I'm just really glad that the timing is now, at this point in my life. I'm glad I'm a mom, that I'm 45, that I have my priorities straight and my s*** together a little bit more than I have in other times of my life."

Parents.com recently caught up with Barrymore about the show, discussing the secret behind her unflinching positivity, her "ultimate Pisces" parenting style, and the way this new chapter has supported her growth.

On Making 'Optimism TV'

Barrymore's original plan was to tape in front of a live audience, but in March, the pandemic hit, requiring her production team to quickly pivot. What followed was a roller coaster filled with emotion and innovation. In a digital docuseries entitled, "The Making of The Drew Barrymore Show," the host takes her audience behind the scenes to illustrate what that experience looked like—and how it led to a format and a tone that couldn't be more fitting in this moment.

Leading with humor and positivity, Barrymore's show features uplifting news and human interest stories, heartfelt lifestyle segments, and celebrity guest interviews (this week, she'll sit down with her co-stars and friends Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu, and Adam Sandler). The sunny, curious vibe of the show is one that Barrymore fans are undoubtedly familiar with, as it has fueled a multitude of her previous projects—from books like Find It In Everything and her memoir Wildflower to rom-coms like 50 First Dates and Never Been Kissed.

"Everybody has lived through difficult times in their life, but I admire choosing optimism," says Barrymore. "And I think this year obviously has challenged and tested and asked everyone to sort of be reborn and start anew, and I think to take optimism seriously is the right road. Because then hopefully, you will find light and levity."

Barrymore believes that positivity requires conscious effort and putting in the work. "At the end of the day, no matter how hard it is, I just can't be a dark depressive," she says. "And yet, that happiness and optimism isn't always freely available. But it's so important not to lose hope or faith and to believe in the good. And if you have to seek it out or talk to other people in order to find it, that's OK."

Barrymore plans to infuse this consciously buoyant perspective into her show in a variety of ways—one of which is a segment called "Drew's News." "I'm always aggregating different things that are happening in the world to have those life-affirming moments or seeing the function in a lot of chaos," she explains. "And we're shining a light on a story that just totally moved me that day, or just something ridiculous and absurd that's straight-up comedy that I really need in that moment."

Another way: celebrating everyday heroes, like an essential worker who Barrymore will surprise this week with a new car and a family who is getting a backyard oasis makeover.

On Being a Pisces Mom

Born on February 22, 1975, Barrymore identifies with her zodiac sign Pisces. Those born under the water sign tend to be empathetic dreamers—a description that resonates with the star. "I am an ultimate Pisces, a cliche of a Pisces," notes Barrymore.

How does her astrological wiring influence how she's raising her daughters? "I try as hard as I can not to project," she shares. "This is their journey, and I'm there to support them and guide them and give them boundaries and supply humor and heart but to stay out of my ego and to make it about them."

Barrymore also feels like welcoming her girls clarified her purpose, sharing, "I did not know the meaning of my life until I met them."

On Her Personal Growth

Whether she's speaking candidly to her 13.5M Instagram followers or putting her nose to the grindstone to build her lifestyle and beauty brands, it's clear Barrymore is deeply invested in constantly evolving personally and professionally. She says creating and launching The Drew Barrymore Show has served to promote even more growth.

"I'm big on self-improvement," says Barrymore. "There are different reasons why we have to grow up or grow at all. And this is definitely one for me. Even though I'm sitting there trying to craft the show as a producer and make this everything that we've dreamt it could be, I'm also working really hard on myself. It's a very ironic tandem path."

No matter how impressive her resume might be and how much success she's achieved across industries, Barrymore says she's "never going to act like a 'know-it-all'" or even an expert. "I still have so much to learn," she says. "I'm going to be learning until the day I pass on, and then some. I love the journey, and I love the comedy of being human."

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