On Friday night my husband and I went to the RnB Fridays event in Sydney. We scored last minute backstage passes from a friend - and it was pretty darn cool.
Before I lose your interest, no - this blog isn't about me going to an event (although, it was so fun, and the fact that we even got to go out - sans kids, obviously - until 1am is blog worthy in itself haha).
I want to talk about loving yourself and the skin you're in now you're a mum.
The day of the gig I was a nervous wreck. I had no idea what to wear. And that's where my little 'who the hell am I now and oh my god I look horrible now I'm a mum?' crisis started....
A huge anxiety about how out of place I was going to feel at this event swept over me. I spent hours trying to work out what to wear. But, it wasn't really about that.
On a deeper level, I think I was experiencing a huge realisation that I'm just not who I used to be. Which I knew, of course. But it wasn't until I was faced with going to this event that it really hit home...
The old me loved to hit up the RnB clubs. In my early 30s, I was single for a few years, and going out was a pretty regular thing. In terms of what to wear, I had that shit sorted - party dress or jeans and a cute top, heels, manicure, makeup, blow dry, straightener/curler...a few wines (I've always been a cheap drunk haha), and I'd get my dance on with some girlfriends.
Also, exercise was huge in my life and I think I cared a little too much about what I looked like (I blame anorexia in my early 20s, but that's a whole other story!).
These days, not so much. Obviously, I'm not in my 20s and early 30s anymore, single and child-free, carefree and heading out for drink and to clubs all the time. I don't own any party dresses. I am self conscious about my little mum tum and my wrinkles. I'm exhausted. I don't have as much confidence about my body as I used to. I feel old and plain on a regular basis.
Because, motherhood has changed me. But, what I've realised is this...
So back to my wardrobe dilemma (that became a 'holy shit I'm old as fuck and feel like shit about myself' dilemma). I have my 'mum uniform' of ripped denim and stripes/grey sorted and, living on the beaches, I own loads of boho dresses. I like to think I have a sense of style. I know what works for me and what doesn't. I don't own any tight, dressy clothes, not like I used to anyway!
So after hours of trying on loads of different options, including the old 'party' dresses I used to wear, I was a hot sweaty emotional mess. In my head I'd even started wondering how I would behave. I feel like I've become a socially awkward mum from being alone with my kids a great deal of the time. I struggle to have normal conversations that aren't about children, even at a BBQ or coffee date. Uh huh, nervous, awkward and no confidence. What a combo, ugh.
It finally reached a point where I was so over it and thought FUCK IT. I'm going to do me. I embraced my own style, wearing my favourite Auguste the Label dress. I felt comfortable. Yes, a little out of place surrounded by 18 year olds haha, but I had fun and felt like me.
Because I am who I am. Yep, I may not wear what I used to or get glammed up or know how to socialise. I may have more wrinkles. I can't stay awake past 10pm (and that's a late night, haha).
But I am a mum. I birthed humans. My body ACTUALLY did that! I'm raising them the best I can. And it's the most amazing gig ever.
Ladies, my point is this - wear your stretch marks, birth scars, bumps and jiggly bits with pride, your body is simply superhuman. What we can do and what we go through both mentally and physically during pregnancy and motherhood can be so hard, but it's all more than worth it and can only make us stronger.
You might THINK you have a mummy tummy, extra weight, more bags under your eyes than you have concealer to cover it, look exhausted, feel horrible about your cellulite, feel frumpy and old...and I hear you. But it's all in your head.
You're even more beautiful inside and out now that you're a mum. You're superwoman.
Embrace your new self, rock that shit and have that wine. You've deserved it!
There is nothing more powerful than a woman who is confident and comfortable in her own skin.
PS, if you're looking for awesome, comfy yet stylish and mum-appropriate (not too young, not too old!) clothing, these four brands are my go-tos for literally everything from denim to basics to dresses: