As both a mother and an actress, Maggie Gyllenhaal -- mother to 3-year-old Ramona with husband Peter Sarsgaard, 38 -- has felt torn in two very different directions.
"I had been so focused on Ramona -- and she's been everything to me -- but I'm also an actress," the star, 32, tells UsMagazine.com. "It's not possible to do it perfectly."
Gyllenhaal, who stars in Crazy Horse (out now), says that she took the role as a single mom because "I wanted to do something for me."
Still, this isn't her first gig since giving birth to her daughter in October 2006.
"I made The Dark Knight and Away We Go, but I was only on set for a few days," she recalls. "So, in a sense, [Crazy Horse] is the first thing that felt like the kind of work that I'm really used to."
Although she was able to put her child-rearing experience to work for her in her latest drama, she isn't opposed to taking a bigger leap with her next character.
"Being a mom is so present in my mind and my work," she tells Us. "It's the most important thing about me, but next I'd like to play someone who's not a mother. Really!"