Welcome to our new series: Perelel Lives. We live in a society that glamorizes and celebrates women‘s careers, the companies they’ve built, the movements they’ve created. But, what we’ve failed to highlight is a facet of their lives that is far more personal—a side that presents perhaps the hardest, but most rewarding job of all—a job with no PTO, no holiday breaks, no sick days, and no salary. Oh, and it also lasts a lifetime: motherhood.
Perelel Lives elevates stories on becoming and being a mother from our community of women we admire, women who do it in parallel to their personal and professional pursuits. Here, we have real conversations about motherhood.
On a rainy weekend in late January, the clouds parted for an unforeseen day of sunshine and our spring Perelel campaign shoot. Shot at Perelel Co-Founder, Alex Taylor's, west L.A. home, it was a small, COVID-safe set complete with all of the makings of motherhood: positive pregnancy tests, folate-rich fruits, vitamins and, of course, babies.
Our mom and baby duo for the day was someone from our very own Perelel community: Carrie London and her 7-month-old gummy baby T. London is an LA-based mom of two who made the weighted decision to pause a career in fashion to raise her two babies and work on her namesake blog. She shared her journey to motherhood and the unexpected silver-linings for our new series, Perelel Lives, below.
Perelel: Carrie, we were so excited to shoot you and your adorable baby for our spring campaign. How was the shoot for you? What were the highlights?
Carrie London: It was really exciting to work and feel a sense of normalcy for a few hours on set. Everyone was tested beforehand and masks were worn whenever we weren’t shooting. The Perelel team and photographer had such great energy. It was really inspiring to be around working women, some of who are raising babies, and juggling it all. I left feeling really motivated and once I got home I couldn’t stop talking to my husband about how great and inspiring everyone was.
P: Our message behind this campaign is "self-care is the new standard." Meaning, self-care for moms should be accessible and shouldn't only be seen as a luxury. It can come in the form of getting enough sleep, having access to clean ingredients, or taking your vitamins. What does self-care mean to you since becoming a mom? What are some ordinary acts of self-care that keep you balanced?
CL: Typically, self-care for me was a spa day, like getting a massage, a facial, or getting my nails done. Now, with the pandemic, that all has changed. I think finding time for little things throughout the day is really important. In the mornings, I like to drink a tall glass of water, take my vitamins and do some form of writing, like “morning pages." If I don’t have time for that, I like to look over my to-do list and strategize. Throughout the day I find comfort in little things, like having a bowl of seasonal fruit on the table that the kiddos can snack on or taking time to roast some organic veggies for a quick lunch. In the evenings, I like to clean the coffee table where my toddler paints and plays all day, light the candles, and enjoy a quiet moment with my hubby and a crisp glass of white wine.
P: Did you always know you wanted to become a mother? Were there periods where you didn’t want to have children?
CL: I’ve always wanted a family and children. I had moments where I thought I wanted to focus on excelling in my career before starting a family, but once I met my husband things moved really quickly. I put things on hold career-wise to focus on growing our family.
P: How did you know when you were ready? Did you wake up one day and just have a feeling? Share the story.
CL: I always knew I wanted kids and when my husband and I met we were on the same page. Within the first few dates he told me he wanted to marry me and he talked about how our children would go to the elementary school up the street from his house. I thought he was crazy, but it was cute. I moved in and we got pregnant right away…and here we are a few years and a couple of babies later!
P: How did you feel about the idea of motherhood with regards to your career or personal passions? Were you fearful of having to make concessions?
CL: I was scared of missing out on my career if I had kids too quickly. Before getting pregnant I had reached a crossroad in my career and I was ready to make a change. It just felt right to pause for a moment and focus on growing my family. After becoming a mother, I gained this inner strength to do the things I really want to do. Everything is harder, but I feel more capable of focusing on the things I want to do. Everything has to be so much more planned out and intentional. You never really get a break, you just find a way to make time for the things that are important to you.
P: Have you translated revelations about yourself from your role as a mother into your other roles?
CL: Everything I do as a mother is intentional. Living with intent has translated into all areas of my life and given me more purpose.
P: Have your priorities shifted?
CL: Absolutely! I used to be a lot more carefree and really independent. My number one priority now is the health and happiness of my family. Nothing else matters.
P: How do you take care or prioritize yourself?
CL: It’s so easy to put everything and everyone else before you when becoming a mother. I have found that I feel better and am better when I take time to do things for myself. Most days start really early with my 7-month-old and after a feeding I take that time; I brush my teeth, I wash my face, and when we go downstairs I like to put on a record and light some candles. If I’m not working out I’ll do my 5-minute makeup and I try to finish my coffee while it’s still hot. My work is also for myself, so prioritizing it is really fulfilling. If the day is chaotic, which often happens, then taking a long hot shower after the babies are asleep does wonders for me. Before COVID my husband and I also used to prioritize date night out.
P: You actually take Perelel in your own day-to-day, what was it about Perelel that really spoke to you?
CL: I love that it was created by mothers for mothers and it focused on our true needs. I spent a lot of time reading science-based research before deciding on my previous prenatal vitamin and it was not as complete as Perelel, so I had to take additional supplements. Perelel also really focuses on the right doses and ingredients that our bodies need and can use. I also like that the Mom Multi Support Pack includes ashwaghanda for stress and a beauty (biotin and collagen) blend. I was previously taking supplements for these things and the one pack just made it easy.
P: How has Perelel changed your vitamin regimen? How does it compare to your previous routine?
It has truly simplified it. I don’t have to worry about researching and sourcing and supplementing my other multivitamin. Perelel is complete and checks all of my boxes.
P: What’s the most valuable advice you’ve received about being a mother?
CL: Motherhood looks different for everyone and the right way to parent is subjective. With my firstborn, I was always so worried that I was doing the wrong thing and thought motherhood should look a certain way. With baby number two, I’m not as hard on myself. Introducing formula when my milk supply is low isn’t a crime, plastic toys aren’t poison, and nothing bad is going to happen if my baby falls asleep in my arms.
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