The Oscar winner has acknowledged that she is awkward when it comes to caring for young ones but her great-granddaughter changed her.
Like mother, like daughter. That has been Whoopi Goldberg's life. The Oscar-winning actress was raised by her single mother, Emma Johnson, after her father abandoned the family. Then, she too became a single mother to her daughter Alex Martin, for most of her life. The mother and daughter are thick as thieves, but one thing that sets them apart is that while one was a natural caretaker the other is still learning to be one.
Goldberg's relationship with her daughter was modeled after the relationship with her mother, Johnson, whom she described as "one of the best people I've had the privilege of knowing." She learned to persevere for her dreams thanks to her mother's unconditional love.
"There were no sad goodbyes, but for one thing," the actress said, after losing her mother in 2010 to stroke. "I realized a couple of days after she passed that no one would ever love me like that again. I wouldn’t put that kind of sparkle in anybody’s eye, you know?" Goldberg added, according to HuffPost.
While Johnson was her first friend, Martin became her best friend. The actress heaps praise the two most important women in her life. Martin, who has three children of her own and is a grandmother, "is a better mother to her three kids than I ever was," she told Page Six. Meanwhile, Martin has expressed multiple times that her mother was her hero, according to GoodHouseKeeping.
Goldberg gave birth to Martin, her only child, when she was just 17. And while she admits that she hasn't been the most traditional mother, the actress admits she has been compensating for it by being a good great-grandmother to Charli Rose. Martin doesn't begrudge her mother for the hard days they have been through together, including using food stamps for a square meal.
"I know what it’s like with the food stamps, because my mom has her [Welfare] cards framed," Martin told TheGrio. "Seriously … I remember that. I remember we had the one-room space and we slept in the bed together. I remember when we wanted to travel we would drive across the country in broke down bugs. We didn’t have the money to go to movies."
Their fortunes changed after Goldberg was cast in The Color Purple in 1985, and she has had a successful career since then. The actress did not have much luck with romantic partners but she cares deeply about her family. They have been her constants after all.
In 2014, when Rose was born, Goldberg decided to care for her in a maternal way. She shared a photo on Instagram saying, "I’m doing something I haven't done in 40 years. I’m actually feeding."
She shared the video with a message of appreciation for her big family. She added that she has not had much practice with young children and didn't think that she was the right one to feed the baby until she bonded with her. "Everyone meet the new addition to my family Charli Rose and yea I'm a tad awkward it took me a minute been a LONG time! #thankGod4newlife!" she wrote, according to Hello Magazine.
More recently, in November 2018, the indulgent great-grandmother dressed up as Vampirina for Halloween to please her great-granddaughter. "My great-granddaughter and I spend time together, and I get time to hang out with her, and she's four," The View's host said, according to GoodHouseKeeping. "And she loves Vampirina, so I was like, maybe I'll do that. And I said, 'Should I be Vampirina?' and she said, 'YES!'"
She even revealed the adorable nickname given to her by Rose: Oopi. "Yeah, [she] can't quite get out Whoopi," the talkshow host revealed. Meanwhile, her relationship with her three grandkids Amarah Skye (Rose's mother), Jersey Martin, and Mason, is also a fulfilling one for her.
"I don’t cook, and everyone knows it. I mean, I don’t even cook for my grandkids. My daughter is a good chef. I tell people it’s because she didn’t like what I fixed. The girl was hungry – she had to learn! For her kids, I’m just a grandmother. They look to me for adventure," she told People.com.
The popular TV host may not have been the typical mother, but for her daughter, she was enough, which is why Martin grew up to become the strong woman she is now.