Cree Summer, popularly known as Freddie from A Different World and an extensive resume of voice work, joined the motherhood clan in 2011 and has had a rollercoaster ride since. In an interview with StyleLikeU, a platform that creates docu-style videos, Summer spoke about how scary her transition to single parenting was after she split from her partner Angelo Pullen, Queen & Slim producer.
“I didn’t want to do it by myself,” she said. “It seemed scary.”
Summer said she met Pullen at the age 40 and that’s when she knew she was ready to have kids. He bought the house right across the street from her and they eventually got married and had two children together—Brave Littlewing, born in 2011, and Hero Peregrine, born in 2013.
After a “good” almost decade together, the relationship ended and she became a single mom. “Greatest fear of my life” the actress says.
“I just fell apart, in front of my girls too and they got to see me” she said. “Because I have to tell you, that destruction was the best destruction of my life in retrospect.”
“I am a totally different person after that,” she added. “Probably a couple of years ago I would have said I was abandoned but now I say I was really liberated. And my daughters got to see me hanging on by a mosquito [inaudible] right? And then they got to just see me soar.”
Why was Summer so afraid of being a single mom? She says it’s because she was a daddy’s girl and had such a loving relationship with her own father. The thought of that type of close bond being affected for her girls was hard.
“I loved my daddy, he was the shining star of my life,” she said. “We didn’t call him iron buffalo for nothing. He was my iron daddy and that meant something to me.”
Sisterhood, having a support from women who understand her challenges, is one thing that has helped Summer get through her transition to single motherhood.
“I often find when you go through a separation and you’re on your own as a single mother, boy you sure find what sisterhood is about for real, ‘cause your sisters come in, especially the ones that have been through it already,” she said. “They come in and they tell you that there is another side.”
The 52-year-old is now enjoying the highs and lows of motherhood, and embracing life with her little rockstars. She said what she loves the most about single motherhood now is that she and her girls have become a rock band that tour together. They are “mama and the savages,” as she calls them.
“The thing that I feared the most is the thing I love the most. I feared doing it on my own and I love doing it on my own.”