raising

Patricia Heaton shares 5 tips for creating a second act after raising kids

Patricia Heaton played the role of TV mom on sitcoms for nearly 20 years as Debra Barone on “Everybody Loves Raymond,” followed by Frankie Heck on “The Middle.” Off camera during that time, she was busy being a real-life mom, raising four sons while balancing a demanding career.

Once “The Middle” wrapped in 2018, Heaton found some down time, but she also became an empty nester. With a quiet house and empty calendar, she reflected on some of the things she had placed on hold while building a family.

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“So many of us have had to make sacrifices in order to be there for our kids and to raise our kids, and they’re sacrifices that most of us have happily made,” Heaton told TODAY Parents. “We didn’t want to be anywhere else. We didn’t

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