Former NASA astronaut Dr. Anna Lee Fisher spoke with Harris Faulkner in celebration of National Women’s Day to tell her story about becoming the first mother to travel to space. She explained how she balanced her career with being a mom -- as it turns out, the mother of Fox News correspondent Kristin Fisher.
“I didn’t set out to be the first mom in space; I just wanted to go into space and it just worked out that way,” Fisher said on “Outnumbered Overtime.” “As Kristin always tells me, I owe it all to her.”
Fisher was assigned to her space flight two weeks before giving birth to Kristin on July 29, 1983.
She gave birth on a Friday and attended her pilots' meeting the following Monday.
“I just wanted everyone to know although I just had a baby I was here and I was going to … uphold my commitment to NASA,” Fisher said.
In November of 1984, Fisher became the first mother in space and she credits NASA for supporting her and assisting her to achieve her success.
“I really felt NASA was very supportive. Certainly my bosses were, my training team. They all made the first couple of weeks easy for me,” Fisher said. “I was doing the two things love most in life … training to go into space and being a mom to Kristin. Luckily Kristin was a pretty easy baby to take care of.”
Fisher also credited her support system for assisting her aspirations.
I would be lying if I said it was easy.
“I had a wonderful … lady who helped me, my mom came and helped. My husband was also great support,” Fisher said.
“You know I had made a commitment to NASA so there was no way I was not going to honor that commitment.”
Fisher would later take a seven-year absence from NASA to raise her family when her second daughter was born, but her commitment to her career inspires Kristin, who balances a career in journalism and motherhood.
“She has just been such a huge inspiration to me. I grew up always… never even thinking about the fact that I could have a demanding career and be a mom at the same time,” Kristin said about her mother. “That was just always a given.”
Kristin’s daughter Clara is 14 months old, the same age Kristin was when her mother went up into space.
“It’s hard enough going to Vietnam for a week to cover the president. I can’t image what it was like for her being strapped on top of a rocket and being blasted into space with a real possibility, at least in the back of your mind, there’s a good chance you might not come back,” Kristin told her mother and Faulkner.
“I would be lying if I said it was easy,” Dr. Fisher added.