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Why Reese Witherspoon is 'glad' she had kids when she was young

The Oscar winner opened up about motherhood in a candid new video on her YouTube page.
/ Source: TODAY

Reese Witherspoon became a mom in 1999 at age 23 the same year her Hollywood career skyrocketed thanks to starring roles in "Cruel Intentions" and "Election."

Though juggling acting and motherhood at a young age was "scary," the 43-year-old Oscar winner says she wouldn't have had it any other way.

"I've been a mom since 1999. I got pregnant (with daughter Ava) when I was 22. I delivered when I was 23. To be totally honest, it was scary. I was scared. I didn't know what it was going to do to my job or my career," Witherspoon says in a candid video she shared to her Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine YouTube page on Thursday.

Motherhood made the "Big Little Lies" star grow up quickly.

Premiere Of Universal Pictures' "Sing" - Red Carpet
Witherspoon, second from right, poses with daughter Ava, sons Deacon and Tennessee, and husband Jim Toth in 2016.Todd Williamson / Getty Images

"Your entire life will change. Everything you believe, every piece of food you eat, every piece of independence you have," she shares. "You can't go out without thinking of another person. You can't look at your groceries without thinking of another person. You don't think about whether you're cold or hot, you think about your kid and whether they're cold or hot. You don't sleep anymore."

However, there were benefits to being a young mom.

"I find having little kids is more physical and it's just really hard on your body. So I am glad that I had kids kind of young," she says. "I had one at 23, one at 27 and then again at 37. And, oh, my God, having a baby at 37 was so much harder. This is just me being real. Everybody's life experience, you have to do when it's right for you."

Witherspoon shares daughter Ava, 20, and son Deacon, 15, with ex Ryan Phillippe and a son, Tennessee, who turned 7 on Thursday, with husband Jim Toth.

During her clip, the "Legally Blonde" star called motherhood "the biggest part of my life." She also advised new moms to make sure they have support.

"I think beyond money, beyond being ready in your career and your life, it's really about, is your support system good? Is your family structure good?" says Witherspoon. "Have you talked about it with your partner? Or have you thought about it logistically? How am I going to make this work?"