A mom with a sense of humour galore caught my attention because of her humorous way of recounting and dealing with often unpleasant situations in which we frequently find ourselves as new mothers. If she happened to write a book in which to collect all the thoughts related to this topic, I would immediately purchase so many copies to offer to all the mothers I know. For now, I am merely responding to her concerns related to her image after becoming a mother.
The following is my reply to the wonderful woman who is passionate about clothes and personal style and recently became a mom:
Dear (insert baby's name)'s Mom,
(You are right, as soon as our children are born, their names immediately replace our last names in conversations with adults who help us raise them, especially paediatricians.)
The frivolous topic you proposed is not that frivolous. Clothes and our image - the real one, but especially the one we think we have - have a very important impact on our state of mind, our general well-being and, consequently, our behaviour.
When we become parents, we already have a million new fears and situations to deal with. Then, moms, another million more than dads. Because for them, the change is greater and also affects their bodies, as well as their lifestyles.
It is probably precisely for this reason that I have yet to meet a woman with this immeasurable desire to add more worries to an already almost endless list. So, we start giving up, one by one, various things that we used to enjoy so much before pregnancy. We start with heels, usually in the third month, and end up putting all our needs on standby until we no longer recognize ourselves. And then we wonder - if we have the time to be with our emotions for a moment, acknowledge them and ask ourselves this question, in the very lucky case when the baby sleeps, for once, half an hour longer without calling us or daddy occasionally takes them to the park by himself - why we are depressed, dissatisfied, feel empty or have even become aggressive, even though we have finally made that dream of having a family come true.
I appreciate and I would like to thank you for sharing your experience. I, too, have always had a passion for clothes and accessories and was always fascinated by how a colour or a small accessory, such as a simple belt, could completely change an outfit. My family of origin did not see art as a safe path for my future and I studied more "serious" things, leaving my passion aside.
Fortunately, a few years ago, I found my way again and, in addition to the professional satisfaction, all the courses and experience that led me to certify as a Style Coach™ (I was preparing the materials for the final assessment when I went into labour and kept asking my daughter to wait a little longer to finish something), also proved useful in my personal life. Of course, I was already starting with a major advantage: being pregnant during summer, I could use some blouses and T-shirts that I already had in my wardrobe. I only purchased (online, of course, for various reasons, including that, like you, I hate waiting in lines) two pairs of maternity pants and a couple of T-shirts that I also wore after giving birth, only when I knew I would stay out longer, exceeding my daughter's "autonomy."
Then, as you say, there are the myriad thoughts related to low-cut clothes and skirts that might reveal more than I'm willing to show to people walking their dogs in the same park where I take my daughter to play, and the inclination toward practicality that probably inevitably kicks in in every tired new mother. I have adopted a straightforward formula of outfits that are comfortable, but not dull. And yes, I also go out every single day (except for the ones with lots of wind, when I stay home and celebrate the event as if it were a day off). I didn't use to go out that often even when I worked in an office!
Despite everything, I can assure you that the standardization and "softness" of pastel colours are not the solution; on the contrary. In fact, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Instead, we need a desire to experiment, get to know ourselves better through clothes, play with colours, and figure out what makes us happy and comfortable (and especially why) in this new context.
Perhaps finding out and wearing the colours that enhance our features and possibly adding some patterns to our wardrobe are the first steps to take to find salvation from boring outfits and from the resignation to vomit-stained clothes (it's just a phase!) because experience has already shown us that accessories such as necklaces, bracelets and earrings are no longer an option for quite a while yet. Who has the will and patience to put them on in the morning, take them off in the evening and, above all, keep adjusting and saving them from the hands of the curious babies we hold almost all day long?!
During my pregnancy in 2022, I realized how important it was for a mother-to-be to honour her body and meet her new needs while staying true to her style. I felt blessed to be able to meet my own needs and wanted to give other women the opportunity to do the same. Thus, I created a new Style Coaching™ package. Maternity Style is a style and transformation coaching program designed to support mothers-to-be during pregnancy so that they can experience joy and self-love while expressing their femininity and easily managing their image and wardrobe during such a physically and mentally challenging time.
If you, too, want to regain, a little at a time, your space and femininity, while rediscovering yourself as a woman, beyond being a mother, through image and personal style, I invite you to contact me.