Case in point? The tears that emerge immediately when the actress starts to talk about the love she has for her 5½-year-old daughter Sadie Grace.
“I love my kid … more than I’ve ever known [is] possible,” the Married … with Children alum, 44, tells PEOPLE before getting emotional and fanning herself while exhaling loudly to regain her composure. “Like, humanly possible.
“It’s a spiritual thing,” she adds. “I really love her.”
Want all the latest pregnancy and birth announcements, plus celebrity mom blogs? Click here to get those and more in the PEOPLE Babies newsletter.
“I feel bad. There were times I didn’t treat my mom [actress and singer-songwriter Nancy Priddy] all that great,” Applegate, whose husband is Dutch musician Martyn LeNoble, admits. “I had no idea how much she loved me.”
“How it immediately right-sizes all of your problems,” the former Veronica Mars star, 36, continues. “Kathryn [Hahn] always says when you’re not with [your kids], it’s like missing a limb … that’s what it feels like.”
Applegate also has some advice for moms-to-be who are experiencing pregnancy for the first time — exercises that will make childbirth a little more bearable.
“Prepare the area for World War … ” she starts, before dissolving into laughter.
“Like I’d walk up to some pregnant lady and be like, ‘Take care of your vagina right now,’ ” she jokes to costar Annie Mumolo. “Oil that thing up. Squeeze it.”
— Jen Juneau