Celebrity Parents Claire Holt 'Struggled' with Identity Outside of Acting After Becoming a Mom: 'Definitely Scary' "I’ve realized what an amazing blessing [motherhood] has been for me to figure out who I really am as a person outside of the confines of my career," Claire Holt says By Georgia Slater Georgia Slater Twitter Georgia Slater is a writer/reporter on the Parents team at PEOPLE. People Editorial Guidelines Published on October 1, 2021 01:03 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Andrew Joblon and Claire Holt with daughter Elle. Photo: Andrew Joblon/Instagram Claire Holt is opening up about her initial hardships when stepping into her role as a mom. The Vampire Diaries actress, 33, covers the most recent issue of Ocean Drive magazine, where she discusses her experience with motherhood and how it has helped to shape her identity. Holt, who is mom to daughter Elle, 1, and son James, 2, with husband Andrew Joblon, explains that before she had children, she only knew herself as an actress. "I have been so intensely chasing this dream of what I thought my career looked like for so many years. It is a real blessing to have been able to find the courage to veer off that trajectory. I first struggled with it when I had children because I didn't know myself as any other identity than an actor," she says. "But I was thrust into motherhood, and that new identity is handed to you without any experience or knowledge going into it, aside from what other people tell you," Holt continues. "It was definitely scary at the beginning, but now I've realized what an amazing blessing it has been for me to figure out who I really am as a person outside of the confines of my career." Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Claire Holt/Instagram Vampire Diaries Star Claire Holt Might Have Been the Busiest Person During the Pandemic—with a Baby and Movie! Speaking of juggling a career and being a mom, the actress admits she's "not exactly sure I've figured out how to balance it all yet." However, the one thing she is sure of is that her family comes first. "Motherhood is so incredible because as soon as that moment comes, nothing else matters as much as your children or the health of your family," she says. "My entire life from when I started acting at age 16 was always focused on how to reach my goals. When I had kids, I struggled with this back and forth — mentally as a career woman and who I am now — a mother who loves her children more than anything in the world." "That's why it's been amazing to be able to expand my professional life in areas that complement my home life and don't require me to leave my family and travel the world on set for months at a time," she tells the outlet.