Happy Friday! Today, we are launching a new month-long series leading up to Mother’s Day. Given that this is my first Mother’s Day as a mother, this series holds special meaning for me. In this series, we’ll be highlighting some of our favorite moms out there! They are dynamic women who are creatives, entrepreneurs, businesswomen, leaders, philanthropists, and so much more. We are going to get real with them about the good and bad times as a mother, their favorite moments, and their less than ideal ones, and lots of the nitty gritty in between.
You’ll be hearing from mothers at all stages, starting with a first time mom to a newborn (2.5 months to be exact).So, keep on reading for some insights into motherhood from my dear friend Ashley Rose of Sugar & Cloth, mommy to Gwen.
Hi Ashley! Thanks for being our first Motherhood Moment mama! Before you gave birth to precious Gwen, what were your thoughts about motherhood?
I was honestly so, so nervous about my new role and how it would affect the work, travel, and relationship rituals we were already used to. It’s been quite an adjustment (and not necessarily a smooth one!), but she’s worth every one!
Did you always know you wanted to have a baby?
I always thought I wanted to have kids someday, but I was never the die-hard type or had a set plan on when, how many, etc.
What did you do to prepare for giving birth?
The best thing we did for preparing for birth was hiring a doola! We used Marley & Moo here in Houston, and they helped us SO much with navigating the process, what to have prepped in advance, techniques, etc.
Now, as your friend, I happen to know that Gwen was a bit of a surprise – timing-wise. Your pregnancy came pretty soon after the wedding, right?
Yes! She’s the best gift we didn’t know we needed! That said, her timing was not planned, haha. It was definitely a major shock for me, but now I can’t imagine what the last year would have looked like otherwise.
I know you like planning (as do I), so how did you deal with the timing surprise element of your pregnancy?
To be candid, I shed a few tears at first. I had a lot of thoughts of ‘what’s going to change now?’ at first. We went on a crazy crash-course of finishing our home renovations, preparing our product line launch, and shooting lots of blog content in advance. I won’t say it’s a process I’d recommend cramming into nine months (I’m surprised Jared didn’t leave me with my hormonal mess of a life at that point) but we survived and I’m glad we finished a lot of those things before Gwen.
Once you gave birth, how, if at all, did your thoughts on motherhood change?
So, so many things clicked for me. Not in the sense that I knew exactly what I was doing in motherhood (still making it up on a daily basis!), but in the sense that I understand and respected so many things about my parents and this new overwhelming love and sense of protection.
What’s been your favorite part about being a new mom?
Seeing her personality develop! The girl is a total crack up and so chunky!
What’s been the most challenging part?
Can I say everything? Haha! But seriously, we learn something new and/or get confronted with a new parenting challenge on the daily it seems like. We just find our groove little by little.
What’s been your favorite memory with Gwen, thus far?
Her first time smiling ear to ear from recognizing me! Heart melted.
How do you feel now vs. days after her birth?
My postpartum recovery was ROUGH. So just being able to walk in general was a postpartum milestone for me. At 12 weeks out, I feel so much more like myself now.
What are your newborn must haves?
What items did you purchase that you didn’t really / don’t really need / use?
Hardly any of her newborn clothes. She was actually in her newborn sizes for quite a while, but we just never left the house and/or always kept her in zip-up sleeper jammies for easy changing and keeping her warm.
I know you’ve traveled twice already with Gwen – most recently internationally. Kudos to you! Any tips for traveling with a new baby?
Thanks to Carrie who recommended getting a Doona stroller, it was a LIFESAVER having a car seat and stroller in one when it came to traveling with baby!
Biggest piece of advice you’d give to new moms?
It’s okay to ask for help, and try not to compare yourself or your baby to others… keyword try. We’re all just human!
A Couple More Things
A huge thank you, Ashley, for sharing some of your motherhood insights with us!
Stay tuned as we feature some other wonderful mothers in the weeks to come.