Nurul Aini reveals, "I always feel like I am never enough for my kids..."
Nurul Aini says, "I have mum guilt ALL THE TIME..."
Didn’t we all adore her as Durrani in Lion Mums 2? 🙂
Actress, TV presenter and mummy of 2, Nurul Aini, is one of the top Malay stars of Singapore. And she has been having a rather eventful 2017!
She made news when she hosted NDP with her daughter Shaista Eman, in August this year, and now, her performance in Lion Mums 2 has been received warmly as well.
Here then, is Nurul Aini, in conversation with theAsianparent…
- How and when did you land in showbiz?
Nurul Aini: “An application was sent in by my best friend for Juara 2002 (a talent competition held by Suria looking for new hosts and actors). I had no idea she had sent it!”
“I got a call from Mediacorp that I had been selected for the next round and from there on, there was no looking back. Haha.”
“I clinched 3rd place during the finals. That’s where it all started! (Oh! The champion for Juara 2002 was Fir Rahman, who plays Reza, my husband in Lion Mums.)”
- How did you land a role in Lion Mums? Can’t help but ask, are you a lion mum in real life?
Nurul Aini: “I received a call from my manager at that time (Season 1) and they told me I got a role in it. I was super happy because it was my first lead role in English! And I got to be a kiasu mum. Hahaha. Very real. “
“I have 2 children. My son, Shan Ehan is 7 this year (P1 this year! Which is why I can totally relate to the new season of Lion Mums!). My daughter, Shaista Eman is 5 this year and she is my photocopy. She wants to be me but her personality is so much stronger!”
“I won’t say that I am a Lion Mum, but I do send my kids for enrichment classes and all. A few classes – music, swimming, math, English. Does that make me a lion mum? No, right? One thing for sure, I am a lot more fun than Durrani.”
- How do you discipline your kids?
Nurul Aini: “I think my husband is more of a disciplinarian than I am. I am not so strict with my kids.”
(“I met my hubby in 1999. We were introduced through friends. Fell in love with him in 2000 and the rest is history. Been with him even before I started showbiz! It’s been 17 years now, my God!”)
“I am just very particular about their daily activities. I do up a roster for them to follow. When I was filming Lion Mums, I was so busy my husband took over ALL DUTIES.”
- How do you juggle home, kids and work, and yet, maintain work-life balance? Do you ever feel mum guilt?
Nurul Aini: “Wow, this is a question I get all the time. I am a working mum and being in this industry – I sacrifice a lot of my time to be on set.”
“When I am home, I am hands on with my kids. I am with them till I put them to sleep. When I have a later call time (we have 5 am call-time sometimes!), I will wake up at 6.30 am to ensure I get to walk my son to school every morning.”
“And then I go for a run, then send my daughter to school. When I am busy, that is the only time I get to spend with them so I really treasure those few minutes.”
“I have mum guilt ALL THE TIME. Just a few nights ago, I cried when I came home and saw that Shan made an origami for me with a message – I miss you mummy. I always feel like I am never enough for them. Always. 😭”
- How difficult is it for mums to manage a career in showbiz?
Nurul Aini: “It is hard, I have to admit. The working hours can be really crazy.”
“But we are not always busy though. When there are no projects, I am free as a bird. It’s all about balancing both motherhood and showbiz. Making use of your free time to the fullest and being productive.”
- You are extremely active and popular on social media, and constantly posting pictures, videos and stories on Instagram. Do you ever worry about privacy and safety issues, especially when it comes to the kids?
Nurul Aini: “Haha. Nope I don’t worry so much about it.”
“I feel that all those uploads are memories that I can look back on, one day. Recently I looked up #shaistaeman and saw all her videos from when she was a baby.”
“I went awwwww and ooooooohhh. That was nice. I am very active on IG stories though. It’s almost like if you can’t find me, just go through my IG stories and you will know what I am up to. Haha.”
- You performed with your daughter this NDP! How did that happen? How was the experience for mummy and daughter?
Nurul Aini: “NDP committee actually called me and expressed their interest to get Shaista to audition for NDP as child host.”
“I quickly said yes because I would love for her to experience and to be a part of NDP. And then later on it dawned on me how interesting it would be to also host NDP together with her. It will be an experience both of us will remember.”
“When she is 18, I can look back to that pic of us on stage together and say “hey we did NDP together”. 😃 So I asked NDP committee if they had found a Malay host. After a few dingdongs, they got me as host! I was thrilled!”
“Shaista loveeeeddd being in NDP. She met a lot of friends and looked forward to rehearsals every Saturday. It was tiring, but worth it. She didn’t mind the limelight at all. I think all the kids got a fair share of the limelight and I think none of the kids minded it.”
- What advice do you have for other mums who are struggling with mum-shaming and work-life balance issues?
Nurul Aini: “I don’t think I am a good enough mum to be giving advice but I think if all mothers do the best of their ability as a mother and a human being, that is good enough.”
“Don’t be too pressured by what the society does and expect. Just be you.”
Also READ: Is Lina Ng a Lion Mum in real life?