I’d like to share a recent interview in which I was profiled as One Hot Mama by the author of One Hot Mama, Erin Cox. I know we all do our best to strive for balance each day and I share some of the ways in which I do that. I’m very happy to be connected with all of you on this journey through parenthood.
Tell us about you and what you do, and tell us about your family.
Hi, I’m Sandy. I am a proud Mom of two precious boys, Pierce (age 5) and Aston (age 3). I’m currently traveling around the world with my family for a year. I created a website documenting our family travels which I am very connected to and passionate about, Four Love of the Globe. My husband and I enjoyed traveling before our boys were born and made a decision to sell our cars, lease out our home, put everything in storage, and take a life-changing journey as a family, eight months ago.
We are all exploring and learning about the world around us and each other every day. This journey, education and experience will be a part of our souls forever.
It is in the formative years that children absorb and build their true foundation. I am so thankful they are developing that foundation, as they travel around the world, surrounded by such diversity and the constant thread of our love. Our boys are grounded, free-spirited, loving and adventurous. My love for them is beyond words or explanation.
My husband, Dana and I have known each other for twenty two years and we built an enduring friendship first. Over the course of many years and many challenges we connected again nine years ago and have been together ever since. I am so happy he wanted to take this trip as much as I did and he makes all of this possible. I am so thankful for him and his Love. We share the same outlook about traveling and broadening our knowledge and perspective in this life. It is ever changing and ever growing and I am so lucky to have him and our boys beside me every day.
How has motherhood changed you?
Being a mother is the greatest role of my life. I had no idea how deeply I would be affected. From the second I gave birth and witnessed the soul of my first born son, I was changed forever. As a woman, we go through so many stages and phases. As a mother, I have a true purpose, which often was unclear in the past and now, is what drives me every day.
My purpose is no longer only my own. My heart is more sensitive than ever before. I have learned sacrifice, unconditional love and what it means to be completely vulnerable. I see the world through their eyes and I want to nurture, support and encourage who they are and what they need. I love witnessing our boys as they discover this world. I love being their Mother.
Motherhood inspired me to create my business, Baby Love Wrap. I wanted to design a product that would encourage others to wear their babies as much as I did. My newborn baby was attached to me as I built this business. I wore him in a prototype of my wrap to all of the meetings and factories every day. We had a great time and we developed something very special together.
How do you maintain being fit, healthy, and feeling beautiful?
Breastfeeding helped take my pregnancy weight off quite quickly and since I did it for over 5 years, it made keeping it off, much easier. I’m active every day because I have two boys. We hike, play tennis, swim, run and anything else that may come our way while exploring this world we live in. I also do my own workout on days when I still have energy after all of that.
I have lupus and when I have flare ups, life can be challenging. There are days when I wonder how I will make it through. I am very proactive with my health and I do my best to be healthy with the things I am in control of. I am a vegan, I stay active and I do my best to get sufficient sleep. The sleep thing is new because for many years I didn’t get much of that. I am grateful for that now and I think it’s contributing to my better health these past couple of months.
As far as beautiful goes, let me tell you this. I just had my first pedicure in 7 months and my grey roots colored after too many months. This is the longest I’ve gone with such little maintenance on my outside appearance. It was an interesting period for me and one in which I’m actually thankful for. I’ve never been one to think that our outsides makes us beautiful. I’ve always believed that one’s inner beauty is the most important thing. When you are shining and confident and comfortable with yourself, you are beautiful.
I see hair maintenance and basic grooming as ingredients for making us feel good about ourselves and these things also give us a certain confidence as women. This said, I also have seen that the opposite opens space for a deeper understanding of what is truly important. Traveling the world and being present to my family and everything around us is what matters. I feel beautiful when I am living the life I am meant to live. I feel beautiful when I am connected to others and this world. I enjoy feeling feminine and pretty when I have pretty toes, a dress on, my hair flowing and the scent of my favorite perfume permeating the air as I walk, however that for me, isn’t beautiful. Beautiful is a feeling that comes from within and I am feeling beautiful right now as I write this. I am in my true, authentic space and sharing with you and this is an amazing place to be in.
What is your biggest challenge for taking care of yourself?
My biggest challenge for taking care of myself is when I can’t control my lupus flare ups. I do my best to get through them and I’m so grateful when they pass. Now that our boys are getting a little older, I make time to take care of myself more than I did when they were infants and toddlers. A shower was a big accomplishment in those days.
How do you balance goals and responsibilities?
Balance is an important thing for me. My goals are aligned with my priorities every day. My responsibilities are just part of that alignment and they don’t feel like work. I just continue taking steps each day and doing what needs to be done within those days. Sometimes I accomplish a lot and sometimes, nothing at all in terms of responsibility. Mindful Living is one of my main goals each day so the responsibilities which align with that are usually quite enjoyable.
What inspires you about being a mother?
I always say that being a Mother is the greatest gift and role of my lifetime. The fact that I get to LOVE completely, nurture, protect, teach, support, encourage and raise my boys each day is unbelievable. I am so inspired when I wake up and get to look at each day as a new day. We create adventures and truly live. Traveling with my kids is a very different experience than my past of traveling alone or with my husband. The world presents an education that is incomparable. I am inspired to constantly learn and grow as a woman so that my perspective as a mother is enriched in order to teach and inspire them about the world around us.
How do you reward yourself?
At the moment, I reward myself by creating time to write and read. I’ve written my whole life and it’s always been very cathartic for me. It’s also always been a true form of self expression and I’m thankful to have people to share this expression with.
I am happy when I get to take a hot bath after our boys are asleep. I enjoy going to the gym, blasting my music and singing while on the treadmill. These are rewards for me. These are the gifts that re-charge and inspire me.
What brings you inner-peace?
Writing and expressing my thoughts give me inner peace. Knowing I am doing my best each day in raising our boys and witnessing their growth and development, calm my soul. Contributing positively and lovingly to my family, those around me and to the things I believe in, give me peace. My inner voice, my heart and my mind, guide me. When I trust my instincts and live my life while trusting these, I find inner peace.
How do you remain joyful amidst the chaos?
My joy comes from my attitude, my patience and my Love. I’m not saying it’s easy or that I’m always smiling through the chaos. I see chaos for what it is and I calmly work through it. It usually doesn’t take very long. Once I do, I find the joy again and balance is in place until the next challenge presents itself. Then repeat.
How do you bring balance to your life when things are chaotic?
I remain calm and patient. I find a way to sit quietly with my thoughts so I can process what needs to be shifted in order to find balance. I really don’t find life to be chaotic. Chaos is a mindset in my opinion. I choose to just handle each thing as it comes, calmly and peacefully. The answers are soon revealed and the clearing is made for new light and new growth.
What does success look like to you?
Success for me is feeling comfortable in my own skin. It’s knowing I am loving with all of my heart, supporting and encouraging our boys as they discover who they are and the world around them. It is contributing to society in positive and constructive ways. Success is being an example of what I wish for others. Love. Peace, Harmony, Balance. Self respect. Full self expression. Success is living and loving with all that I am and feeling the gratitude for each moment I am given.
What have you failed at that turned out to be a blessing?
I fail to follow the masses and the expected norms of society. I choose my own path and I pave new ones every day. I fail to let other’s tell me how to live and how to raise my children. I fail to give up or get discouraged when I witness evil and hate in our world. I fail to live a passive life. These are failures which I am blessed with every day.
What projects are you working on?
I am currently traveling around the world and enjoying the most exciting projects of my life. I am capturing precious moments through photography. I am writing for several publications on parenting, traveling and mindful living. I passionately document our journey through my personal blog at Four Love of the Globe. I am donating and selling my Baby Love Wraps around the world. I am writing fictional short stories. I am getting ready to write my first book. I truly feel that I am living my dreams and discovering and experiencing life so deeply and fully. I am more grateful than I can possibly express.
How do you nurture your relationship while parenting, traveling, and maintaining a business?
This isn’t always easy and I find it to be another thing that comes down to ‘balance’. At the moment, while on the road, I do my best to have quality time together as a family as well as individually. We all need space sometimes and we all need one on one time. I love my family so much and the nurturing comes easily because we are always together which promotes the kind of intimacy and connection I need and love.
What is a favorite quote that inspires you to be your best?
“Every single second is a chance to turn it all around.” -Inspired by the film, Vanilla Sky.
I believe that we have a choice in each moment to be our best. A positive attitude and that choice, set up the foundation we need to build upon. No matter what happens, I know that I can choose to be my best and to make the most out of what I have. When challenges arise, I make the choice to rise above, learn and grow.
Thank you for taking the time to interview me, Erin and thank you all for taking the time to read.