Hello Woman Rising is a new fortnightly column we’re thrilled to publish to inspire, support and celebrate working Mums. To kick it off, I’m talking to Fi of Mumma Morrison, a popular blog and online community for new and prospective Mums.
Fi is a first-time mum to her beautiful, 5 month-old baby boy who she affectionately calls Starfish. She has also started a small business, Starfish Creations, selling women’s silicone beach necklaces. Fi and her family live in the Sydney.
Let’s get to know her better!
Name: Fi Morrison
Family structure: Married with 1 son (5 months old)
What do you do? I’m on maternity leave from Primary teaching, and currently run a motherhood blog at Mumma Morrison (which feels like a full time business!) and run my own small business Starfish Creations.
What was your life plan when you were young? I didn’t really have a ‘life plan’ – when I finished the HSC, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do and almost became a florist! But through a friend I started working with children, and while that has changed in terms of the field or ‘job’, I’ve continued working with children for over 10 years. I think I’ve always had a passion to help people, but wasn’t sure what that was going to look like.
Have you faced adversity? Tell us about it.
I think we all have our own struggles, and ups and downs in life. I’ve struggled with anxiety for a while, and this particularly hit hard as a new mother. My son has a particularly loud cry, so I would be anxious about leaving the house and going in public during the first 3 months as he would ‘scream’ a lot when he was tired. He is now the exact opposite, and hardly ever cries which is amazing.
I’ve also had some family health issues within the past year, while also having my son, starting up a blog and business, and experiencing the ups and downs of the newborn stage.
What was the greatest lesson you learned as a result of this experience?
I’ve really learnt the value of a support network, a tribe, a community – whatever you’d like to call it – especially in the early weeks of becoming a new mum. It can feel very lonely and very overwhelming, but there are people who surround you, encourage you and support you. I have found the same with my blogging and starting a small business – finding a group of like-minded women has helped to inspire and motivate me to keep moving forward, even when everything – or everyone else – might be saying otherwise.
How has Motherhood changed you – if at all – and your approach to your business/career?
I’ve always wanted to be a mother, but I don’t think I imagined ever being a ‘stay at home mum’. I am a bit of an impulsive persona and can move on quickly to new things (while also maintaining the same mission or goal) – I like to be innovative, creative, start new projects up and inspire people, while equipping others to take the lead so I can move on to the next project. I think in the back of my mind I always imagined continuing on with this, but never fully considered what it would look like when motherhood came along. Now, I want to be able to work from home to stay with my son – in a way I’m not looking forward to going back to work – so in a way I guess my priorities have heavily shifted towards my family. However, I have also been able to recognise that I can work – and make a difference, my ultimate goal – while at home too.
For those reading this column that may be questioning their need to cultivate their best life for various personal reasons, what advice would you give them?
Listen to your heart and run with it. While the support of family and friends is amazing, sometimes they don’t fully understand your whole situation. Only you know what is best for you and your family, so sometimes you just need to listen to what your heart is telling you to make that decision. I can be horrible at this – I often take on board too much the opinions of others, which stops me from doing things I know I can, and should, do. So listen to your support network, but also make sure you listen to your heart.
What is one opinion or common stereotype about working Mums do you find most frustrating and wish you could change?
That working mums don’t ‘care’ about their kids – that they should be staying at home with the kids. While I’m not currently working out and about, I do an awful lot of work at home, and it doesn’t mean anything about how I feel about my son. In fact, I find that my work as a blogger and small business owner is my “me time” – my time to feel like my own person, an adult, a woman – and even though I LOVE my identity as a mum, I think it is important for my family to see me as an individual as well.
What would you like to see happen for women of the next generation?
I would love women of the next generation follow their dreams, their passions and their hearts, to affect change within their generation and the next, and not have to face hardship or backlash for doing so.
What small actions do you take each day to cultivate your best life?
I try to remind myself of my real priorities each day – most importantly my family and my beliefs – as well as my passion and mission to try and help others to the best of my ability (which is currently new mums through my blog). I purposely try to give myself some ‘me time’ each day, even if it is an extra 5-10 minutes in the shower. This helps me to unwind and relax, as well as take some time to refocus on myself and my priorities.