WE LOVE WELLNESS MAMMAS #3
Welcome to the final installment of the WE LOVE WELLNESS MAMMAS series. Over the last 3 weeks you’ve had the opportunity to learn from the motherhood journey of six incredible women in the wellness world. This exploration into motherhood was born from my own confusion – how to live and be in wellness AND be a mother? In all honesty, each of these women have offered up so much clarity for me. I hope they did the same.
GIVEAWAY FOR YOU//
Now, before you get immersed in the below, don’t forget that today and tomorrow is your last chance to enter my Wellness Mammas giveaway for Mother’s Day. 3 lucky readers will receive FREE instant access to my eCourse – Renew Yourself. This is an 8 week immersion in wellness. It’s a fantastic introduction to healthy living, a toe-dip into the wide ocean of wellness. It’s for newbies, fresh to the wellness scene, but also for those that have lost their way and need a gentle reminder and a little nudge! Not to mention that Renew Yourself is perfect for mammas who need to reconnect with themselves and find that equilibrium again.
HOW TO ENTER//
- Comment below – Tell me, how YOU stay healthy as a busy mum.
- Like The Wellness Project facebook page.
- Make sure you jump on my weekly wellness update list to find out the winner! (You get an awesome FREE Video Series – 3 Steps to More Wellness by signing up!)
Don’t forget, it’s Mother’s Day this Sunday. Can you, in some way, express your love and gratitude to your mother in a way that will bring HER joy. Remember, it’s about her and honouring her gift of life to you.
Please meet Katrina Dowling. Katrina is the Marketing Director of Global By Nature who carry my beloved Sunwarrior Protein Powder – you’ve probably heard me mention that brand, oh say, 10000 times! As an Ambassador for Sunwarrior and Synergy Natural I’m honoured that I get to put my name to such amazing products, but also to work with such incredible people. Katrina first gave me an insight into the passion she feels towards motherhood (she has two boys) at a recent photoshoot. I was totally blown away by her love, joy and happiness at being a mother. But also to the way she juggles and balances wellness in that role.
Her words are gorgeous, her insights truly special. I know you’ll get a few golden nuggets out of these! A HUGE thank you to Katrina for opening up and sharing something obviously so precious and special to her.
What does MOTHERHOOD mean to you
Motherhood to me has been the greatest blessing and gift. It is the hardest and most rewarding job on earth, and certainly it’s something that nobody can ever prepare you for. Motherhood can be tiring, it can be relentless and it can be frustrating when you feel pulled in a million different directions, particularly as a working mother. At the same time, motherhood brings me such incredible happiness and perspective. It’s taught me what it truly means to love unconditionally, to sacrifice, to open my heart and to feel real, raw, untamed emotion.
Motherhood is an amazingly instinctive thing, and I feel so privileged to be experiencing. From the day that I learned I was pregnant my life changed. As a perfectionist and self confessed control freak, I questioned whether I’d be able to do it. Would I be good enough? Where was my instruction book to follow? But I went with the feeling and told myself that I could…that I’d learn. Being pregnant made me realise how much of a miracle it is to nurture a growing baby inside your body. Becoming a mum has made me realise how miraculous my body, mind and spirit is.
As a mum, I see that it’s my role to provide my 2 beautiful boys with the values and framework for creating a happy, well-balanced life. This means providing them with all the love, positive values, encouragement and confidence to grow into the people that they want to become. I see it as my role to provide my boys with a safe home and many opportunities. I want them to have the courage, confidence and conviction to build a life based on good decisions. If in years to come I can see before me 2 grown men who are gentle, intelligent, considerate, confident and happy, I will feel happy and satisfied that I have done my job! I will forever have 2 pieces of my heart that roam freely outside of my body.
How do you manage to stay healthy with a busy life/family as a mother
I have always prioritised my health and wellness and this has become even more important to me since becoming a mum. Very often people will look at me in shock when I tell them I’m a mum of 2 boys and say “but you don’t look like a mum, you’re too fit!” I find this funny…I think there’s a perception in society that once you become a mum, your body becomes second rate! Sure, I think some women don’t recover well, but I can say that I made it my mission to stay fit leading up to, during and post pregnancy and I’m fitter than I was before becoming pregnant! I see it as a responsibility to me and my kids to be as healthy, fit, well and happy as I can be.
Staying fit is about prioritising and making time. My kids have come running with me from the time that they could fit into their pram, I carried them in their Baby Bjorn until their legs reached my knees and I have always made time to go to the gym and fit exercise into my schedule. I often get up super early and I head out the door to exercise before my kids wake. Many people say that they don’t have time to fit exercise in as a mum…I think that this is the grown up version of ‘the dog ate my homework!” If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way to do it.
In terms of eating, I’ve always for the most part followed a clean and healthy eating plan. I have been a vegetarian for years (including throughout both of my pregnancies) and I really limit sugar and processed foods. My kids know not to even ask for certain things because I simply won’t buy them. Although, they have identified my weakness for good quality chocolate and ice cream and they milk that for all it’s worth!
In what ways do you try and invite health and wellness into your child(s) life… and why is that important to you
I’ve always encouraged my kids to be active and to exercise. I’ve quite deliberately banned electronic games and XBox from our house….my philosophy is that you can better fill your time with reading, drawing, playing freely outside…I want my kids to engage in constructive activity that builds and expands their minds and keeps them fit, engaged, communicative, healthy.
Really, I think that habits are formed from the time that children are born, and probably prior to that, in the womb. So I maintain that in order for my kids to place a value on being healthy, fit and well, I have to live it myself.
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learnt as a mother
I have learnt so many lessons as a mother, and I continue to learn lessons each and every day. I maintain that my children are my greatest teachers and they always will be. I am learning new things about them, myself, and life in general as they grow and develop. Becoming a mum has taught me what it means to love unconditionally, to open my heart, to sacrifice and to prioritise, and of course to juggle!! Importantly, becoming a mother has given me a sense of balance and perspective that I may not have otherwise developed. It made me realise how unbalanced my life was previously…I was always so career focused and always in a hurry to achieve things in as short a time as possible. My career is still really important to me and yes, I have clear goals that I want to achieve in my life, but I guess I’m more measured in my approach now and I realise the importance of taking my time and enjoying things along the way. I’ve leant to focus on what’s important and it’s made me realise the importance of surrounding myself and my kids with good friends, family and role models.
One of my most valuable lessons is that it’s absolutely ok to seek out and ask other people for help. I tried in the early days to do everything myself. I thought nobody could do as good a job as me as looking after my kids and I had serious issues trusting anybody to care for my kids. In reality, this is a fast course to sending yourself and those around you crazy, and as a working mum, it’s not practical.
I’ve always been a super calm person, however I’ve struggled with being patient throughout my life, I’ve struggled to live in and really enjoying the moment rather than thinking forward to the next minute, hour, day, year. I’ve learned that sometimes you have to let go, that you can’t control everything and I’ve learned that not everything can be perfect. I’ve also learned that there’s great happiness and relief that can come with being ok with that.
Most of all, I’ve learned what it means to be truly happy, to enjoy little moments every day and how amazingly beautiful it can feel to read your kids a book at any time of the day and to fall asleep with them wrapped in your arms… I’m holding onto each and every one of those moments for as long as I can!
Last, but not least, Please meeting Aimee Angelique. We’ve, unfortunately never met face-to-face, but we’ve had a very loving relationship via the interweb. Her partner is an amazing Ka Huna Massage Therapist in Sydney and this is how we originally connected. Aimee has a website called Mummy’s Intuition. It focuses on ideas and inspiration related to pregnancy, parenting and more. Even via the internet you can feel how much Aimee ADORES being a mother. It’s written all over her face. She is open, honest and so incredibly sweet. I can just imagine the kind of mother she would be. She provides some really awesome insights and information below – particularly around breastfeeding.
What does MOTHERHOOD mean to you?
To be completely honest with you motherhood is not something that can be easily explained it’s something that really needs to be experienced. It is so extremely complex on more levels than anyone could ever possibly imagine.
I guess if I try to put it into words it’s a life-changing journey!
From the moment I found out I was pregnant I was truly amazed, excited, full of love and happiness, and very overwhelmed. It was amazing how much this news changed me from that first day.
I’ve known love in my life, but when you grow something inside your body for nine months, go through the experience of labor, then watch this beautiful little thing grow and develop into a little person with it’s own personality and mannerisms. You understand why it’s called ‘the miracle of life.’
Motherhood is unconditional love. Being there for your child, to guide, nurture and support them throughout their life.
How do you manage to stay healthy with a busy life/family as a mother?
For me there are a few key things that I try to stick to but I think the biggest way to stay healthy is to try and be as organised as possible. In saying this, as all mothers know everyday is completely different and new, challenges are always thrown at you so I just try and take each day as it comes and do the best I can.
Some little things that we do as a family are:
Cooking/Eating: We try to eat as much organic real whole foods as possible and pretty much cook all our meals from scratch at home so we know exactly what goes into it. We don’t eat sugar or processed foods and only drink filtered water.
Shopping: We visit our local farmers markets once a week as a family to buy all our fresh foods. We have found that it is not only more cost effective than going to the big supermarkets for our food but it also lasts longer and we know exactly where it comes from. (Plus it’s also such a beautiful fun family day out!)
Weekly Food Plan: We try to create a weekly food plan so we know what we need and can be organised and don’t resort to eating processed, junk or take away food. It also helps us to not waste food. It so easy to buy things that you don’t need and then they go to waste.
Cleaning: We only use natural cleaning products at home so we can feel confident that our family won’t be exposed to any nasty chemicals plus it’s also so much better for our beautiful planet.
Exercise: We try to do some kind of exercise everyday. I personally like yoga and Pilates. Plus we also take our dog Phoebie for a walk to the park everyday, which is always nice to get out of the house and into nature and the fresh air.
Meditation: We have been a little slack lately as we have been so busy but we are trying to get back into our daily meditations as it helps us stay calm, grounded and connected as individuals and as a family. (I am also loving practicing Yoga- Nidra at the moment too. If you haven’t tried it I highly recommend it. )
In what ways do you try and invite health and wellness into your child(s) life… and why is that important to you?
For me personally I think one of the most amazing ways to give your baby/child the best start to life is through breastfeeding. However before I became a mother I found breastfeeding to be really weird and uncomfortable and I wasn’t sure how I was going to deal with it. When I fell pregnant I started doing research on all the benefits of breastfeeding and now I can not think of a more beautiful and natural way to connect and bond with my baby girl. It is seriously amazing how our bodies work and adapt and that we are able to feed our babies breast milk that sets them up for life. The benefits are incredible! I am now so passionate about breastfeeding sharing the benefits.
Some of the benefits include:
* It’s the best food to help your baby to grow and develop.
* It is custom-made by each mother for her own unique baby, and contains the perfect amount of protein, carbohydrate, fat, vitamins and minerals.
* Breast milk contains valuable antibodies that help prevent disease and can reduce the risk of your baby developing allergies.
*It also helps to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria by coating your baby’s digestive system.
So in saying all of this I am no longer embarrassed by breastfeeding at all whether it is me feeding my baby girl or seeing another mother feeding her baby. I actually feel extremely blessed, as it is a completely natural and organic gift that I can give to my baby that gives her the best start to life. Gotta LOVE that!
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learnt as a mother?
PATIENCE! For me this is the key. If you want to be a good mother and stay calm, stress free and grounded you must learn to be patient, learn to listen and just go with the flow.
I have also learnt to let go of the need to please others and care what other people think and say. When you become a mother for the first time you will have everyone trying to tell you how to be a mother, what to do to and how you should care for your baby (even if they are not a mother themselves). When my daughter was first born I would get really upset and be so bothered when others would pass judgment on me and my way of parenting but now I have learnt to listen and take on what feels right for me and my family and just let go of the rest. I also am a big believer in following your intuition and instincts. I think the best piece of advice I was given was to “You are your baby’s mother and you know your baby better than anyone else in the world.”
Thank you for reading and absorbing the beautiful words of the 6 mother’s featured in my We Love Wellness Mammas series. Lauren, Kerrie, Valeria, Aimee Angelique, Emma and Katrina you are each inspiring, powerful, strong, loving women and mothers. I know you would have inspired so many women through your words.
Now – to all the other mummy’s, mummy’s to be or ANYONE who needs to feel renewed, don’t forget to enter the giveaway! Winner will be announced on Monday after Mother’s Day.
Love + light,