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Hacking Motherhood


"We, as parents, have to teach kindness to all no matter what. "

Hacking Motherhood is an interview series featuring candid conversations with moms in STEM about navigating the less-than-spectacular moments in career and parenthood. This week, we talked to Samantha Hudgens, the Co-Founder and CMO of The Molecular Mom, a lifestyle guide for women working in science fields. She talks about the terrifying realities of raising a child in 2019, and how “using sunscreen” can get lost in translation from mom to daughter.

Samantha Hudgens
What has been your career journey?

My career actually started in oil and gas. I was offered a great opportunity at a molecular lab, which was completely new to me, but quickly became fascinated by the science world and what it entails. I decided that although I didn’t have the science background, I didn’t need to it to become skilled in marketing for science! With that, Dr. Amanda [Founder of Molecular Mom] and I were introduced and I admired her skill set in molecular genetics. We are now lucky enough to run two companies as business partners, and I couldn’t feel more fortunate to be able to know and work with someone like her. 

How many kids do you have, and how old are they?

I have one stepdaughter and she is 12. I have been in her life since she was 7, and we usually don’t use the word “step.” I am married to her mother and—minus the preteen mood swings—she is amazing, fun and a great kid to be around!

What do you think is the most difficult part of raising a child in 2019?

Truly, it is things going on in our schools today, namely the bullying, and the shooter drills that were unheard of when we were kids. School should be a safe place, but it is not at all anymore. We, as parents, have to teach kindness to all no matter what. Even as an adult, it is so difficult.

Was there something you told yourself you’d never do before you had kids that you’ve ended up doing now that you have kids?

I have always coached young girls in basketball or softball as a hobby. I promised myself I would not be that parent in the stands. You know the one: [yelling because] refs don’t know what they are doing, and your daughter isn’t playing her A game. I am now, that parent. 

What is something recently that went so horribly wrong with your kids, you just had to laugh?

I am notorious for promoting healthy decisions like, using sunscreen, but then I won’t use it. My daughter notices and remembers everything. I was gifted some sunless tanner that I would never use, but my daughter, knowing I don’t want her “tanning from the sun” took it upon herself to find and use it with the best 12-year-old interpretation of instructions while I was out one day. I came home to a Dorito-colored daughter.

How are you exposing your daughter to STEM?

My daughter was diagnosed as a Type 1 diabetic at age 11. I expose her to STEM by watching educational videos and, more importantly, talking to her about advances in T1D scientific findings including diet and nutrition.

What’s a cool DIY hack you’ve completed recently?

Since it is summer in Houston, we’ve been all about freezing fruit and putting it in different beverages. Freezing strawberries and grapes have been great in sparkling water!

How do you practice self-care?

I work out in the mornings. Then, I will take 30 minutes to an hour of time in my room in the evening either bathing, doing a face mask (they are my favorite!) and just relaxing.

You can follow Molecular Mom on Twitter.

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