new mom

A Real Mama's Recap of The Champagne Society at Maris DeHart

On a brisk Friday night 80 mamas (and some not-yet mamas!) got dolled up and braved the cobblestone streets in stilettos for a night out at Maris DeHart. The bubbly (the good stuff!) was free flowing and so was the girl talk. Just like me-- so many ladies were there to explore new friendships and connect. Coming from someone that immediately changes into pajamas after work and a rockin' Friday night is Netflix with a bowl of cereal, this did require some effort for me to be out on a Friday night. I'm seriously that meme "I'm so busy this weekend", and then "Me at 8pm on Friday night"-- the image of the dog in bed with a shower cap on. Legit!

I did, however, make a conscious decision earlier this year to get out more, invest in people, and find my tribe. This can be hard when it's so much easier to opt out. It requires effort and energy to powder your nose and pull up those Spanx to head out to meet new people. Can I get an Amen?!! BUT-- awesome ladies aren't going to arrive on my doorstep begging to be friends. I have to go out and FIND them. I had met Gervase a few times, and I really went to support her and see what this whole "society" was all about. Boy did I hit the jackpot!

In one word, the evening was "magic." Gervase has created a judgment-free environment with welcoming smiles, a pretty backdrop and plenty of bubbly.

We heard truths from Savannah Guss, the fabulously chic founder of @bohoandbows, and Leva Bonaparte, developer extraordinaire of @bourbonnbubbles.

All photos by  Shannon Oleksak

All photos by Shannon Oleksak

These ladies gave it to us straight! I loved hearing their stories about transitioning from Chief Pooper Scooper in the town of Momdom to following their dreams. We've all been there, and I love hearing reinforcement that we're not alone. Though my "littles" are now 9, 10 and 12—I still struggle with being the best CEO, best wife, best Mom—you name it! It's a daily challenge that I don't always get right. When the kids were younger, I used to default to the fact that they don't come with an instruction manual. Maybe they won't know if I screw it up as they have no one to compare me to! Right?!! 

It was refreshing to hear other Mamas talk about their struggles -- especially as we live in this superficial space of perfect highlight reels on Instagram. There was a real sense of camaraderie in the space, and there were some real nuggets in what these ladies shared:

1) Don't allow yourself to be a doormat

2) Half-ass is the new bad ass

3) You can't "kill it" at anything when you're sleep deprived

4) Even mamas are allowed to dream big


#2 resonated with me the most as what I do for a living is all about beautiful objects and perfect images. It can feel very superficial and drive a need for perfection. I legit like want to get a t-shirt that says “#halfass is the new #badass”! Because in reality the only pressure on me is the pressure I put on myself. It's like that movie Picture Perfect with Jennifer Aniston-- "Gulden's Mustard....Number 2, and that ain't bad"! I might be aging myself, but you 40-somethings know what I'm talking about!!

You know how some events you go to, and you think "this was a waste of a good outfit"? Well, not in this case!

This first time "society member" left feeling joyful, content, and excited about some new friendships. I even left with a bag loaded down with the most ADORABLE ornaments from Maris DeHart. It was totally worth all of the effort and energy it took to get there. Because in the end, all of us mamas are worth it, don't you think?!

So in channeling my inner Gervase, “that's what J said!


Written by the incredibly sweet (and bad-ass) Julianne Taylor



A super heartfelt thanks to our host, Maris DeHart, and all of our incredible sponsors: Teacups and Trucks, Shannon Olesak (who takes all our fabulous photos), Snyder Events, Ash and Vine Botanicals, and Bourbon N’ Bubbles, the hosts of our fantastic afterparty.


Wanna be in the know and have FIRST DIBS on #ChampagneSocietyCHS tickets? Opt in to the Insider Email List.

FOMO? Can’t be in the room but need to get in on the fun? Holiday-edition ANNUAL VIRTUAL VIEWING PASSES available through January 1st so you can still get in on all the #truthbombs! There are only 20 of these limited viewing passes and this offer expires in 2019. Gift a tribe to a mother who needs a night off.


You have this kick-ass marriage before the baby. Maybe you continue said kick-ass partnership during pregnancy, because guess what? You still have things like, I don't know SLEEP, sanity, social life and quality time together. Then baby arrives and it's all rainbows and unicorns and you are REALLY happy but something feels a bit, off? Your marriage is different post-baby. You aren't quite as connected. There's not as much time for just the TWO of you. This can look a MILLION different ways depending on the relationship, but my point is THIS IS NORMAL, and it's been a theme with all my clients and truth chats for the past couple weeks. Relationship issues are in the air, so let's talk about something we sometimes forget is possible once we become mothers:


In this week's video, I give you my tip for not even trying to balance my marriage with #momlife, but doing something even better — infusing PLAY into my relationship ALL DAY LONG with some simple tactics. Because, let's be serious, your husband frankly doesn't NEED the same amount of time, care and attention as your baby. He can feed himself, poop on the potty and make his own peanut butter and jelly sammich. So instead of trying to "balance" our marriages with our Mom Lives, why not change the game and just have a little FUN with it, instead?

Get on the list for Master Your #MomLife coming in July, people! It's. gonna. be. so. FUN.

Why I Said "Yes" to the Antidepressants

“How long are you comfortable waiting before you let me write you a prescription?” my therapist said to me. I was cross-legged on my classic patient couch and she sat across from me in her doctor chair. Her nature was to always smile a little when she spoke, and this provoking was no exception. She was playing my game with me. Me, the perfectionist and control freak. Her, hilarious and straightforward. I loved this woman. I still do. She knew I was clinically depressed. She knew I had only a couple weeks ago started to accept that truth for myself. She knew I would try to control it and micromanage it myself before I’d even be receptive to her suggestion of an antidepressant.

“Give me 2 more weeks,” I said to her. Dead serious.

Because DUH, I was going to BEAT this thing in 2 weeks. Just as soon as we switched daycares. Yes, that would fix EVERYTHING and I’d be much better equipped to be a mom and human being then. I wouldn’t cry as much. Or feel as anxious or overwhelmed. I wouldn’t feel like my body had failed me with its rapidly diminishing milk supply and it wouldn’t matter that I still loathed my job with the fire of 1,000 suns.

BECAUSE I would have FIXED that daycare problem, don’t you see! Because I’m a fucking wizard and at this time in my life, 3 years ago, I was incredibly confident about the “type” of woman I was. A gets-shit-done chick. A climbs-the-corporate-ladder badass. A DOES-IT-ALL-AND-THEN-SOME socialite with an affinity for dance parties and girl time. No, motherhood wouldn’t shake me. It wouldn’t change me. I would HANDLE. THIS.

Two weeks later, slouched in the warm embrace of that brown leather couch, I bawled my eyes out and defeatedly said, “I’ll take that prescription now.” In the next breath I probably said something like, “I feel like a failure. I hate myself. Why can’t I figure this out?”

My therapist probably smiled at me again, knowing that logical words of consolation only go so far when someone is in as deep a hole as I was at that period of my life—four months postpartum. I now realize that what she knew then was that EVERYTHING would change once my medication kicked in and I could think clearly again.

I was already in depression’s classic cycle of negative thinking. The negative and irrational thinking was the result of a chemical imbalance in my brain. This imbalance was the result of dramatic shifts in my hormone levels during and after pregnancy (note: this part happens to all pregnant women. We’re not joking when we say hormones are a bitch). ALL THIS was exacerbated by the fact that depression runs rampant in my family and I had experienced it before—in college. Yes, friends it is WAY genetic. I was already crazy high risk. I knew this. Top all this excellence off with the environmental trigger of me going back to work after 3 months of maternity leave and transitioning from spending my leisurely days breastfeeding, sleeping and watching Grey’s Anatomy to leaving my newborn with strangers and spending 40 hours a week at a job that was sucking my soul out my eyeballs and what do you get?

The perfect postpartum cocktail for a pregnancy hangover!

A life+genetic+chemical+hormonal elixir GUARANTEED to induce overwhelming amounts of stress and lead to classic postpartum depression (PPD).

“So we meet again, old friend,” I thought resentfully to my stupid self.

Things got much, much worse before they got better. The meds took two to three weeks to kick in, and I remember thinking despairingly one night (my crazy thoughts spiraling out of control), “Oh God, I waited too long.” My husband was doing his best to support me without, well, dying. He was nearly a single parent and definitely a lonely one.

“I’m using every single ounce of my energy to just keep it together every day,” I told him. “I’m hanging by a thread, and I just don’t have the energy to worry about you, too,” I told him indifferently one night in bed. And I meant it.

Don’t get me wrong. I was still taking care of our baby. Showing up for my job. Smiling at people in the hallways. Drinking myself to sleep and maybe even using eyebrow pencil (can’t confirm this last one, actually), but once the curtain closed and the audience went home at the end of the night and it was just me and husband—I collapsed exhausted. Disappointed. Terrified I wouldn’t have the fuel to start the show bright and early again the next morning.

My mantra during this time in my life was literally, “JUST PUT PANTS ON.”

If I got the pants on at 6:30 in the morning, then I’d probably make it to the car. If I made it to the car (baby in tow), then I knew I could make it the 40-minute drive to the office and once I sat at my desk—victory. What I actually accomplished at that desk each day mattered not nearly as much as the fact that I had gotten my ass there.


FRIENDS—I am one of the shiniest and happiest people I know. I am also one of the most highly sensitive and emotional people I know. You can look fine on the outside and be a hot mess on the inside. I mean, most of us are. I'm a LIFE COACH FOR MOTHERS, for goodness sakes. Yes, even I am human. I, ESPECIALLY, am human.

My point is, we are not here to suffer. We do not need to crawl our way to each day’s finish line (read: bottle of wine) as new mothers without taking care of ourselves. Usually, we just don’t know HOW to take care of ourselves. And then, even if we do, we don’t see mental and emotional and spiritual health as a priority because “I can handle this just fine, thankyouverymuch.”

I was not FINE at this time in my life. I am eternally grateful I said YES to those meds. I wouldn’t go so far as to say they saved my life, but I would say they saved my spirit. I would not have had the mental clarity to quit my job if it weren’t for those meds. I wouldn’t have had the energy to put into my marriage if it weren’t for those meds. I would have LITERALLY killed myself pumping breastmilk for my baby instead of supplementing with formula, as needed, if it weren’t for those meds.

Take the Goddamn meds if you need the meds. You’re not failing—this shit is just HARD, and anyone who says it’s not is lying or has literally blacked out the memory of what it’s like to adjust from ‘human with all her own body parts and hormones’ to ‘new mom.’ #ThatsWhatGSaid

As part of my new Mommy Real Talk series, I did a Facebook Live video about with 6 Tips for Helping a Friend with Postpartum Depression. You can watch it here for more resources and actual, tangible things you can do to support a mama with PPD. Side note: You can subscribe on that video screen to receive notifications when I go live in the future. (Because you know you want to KNOW).

Becoming a mama is such a rite of passage and there are so many important life-changing lessons to be learned along the way. For me, one of them was self-care and sanity and celebrating what I now know to be real life: Beautifully Messy Mommy.

My rocky start as a new mom changed my life and allowed me to truly embrace my new identity and create a life I love after healing and self-care. My intention is always to help you do the same.

Love and Truth-telling,


PS: Mother's Day! IT'S COMING. Did you ask for something you actually want? I'm doing 25% off single and double coaching sessions until next Sunday only. Tell your lovers to SHOP HERE and enter promo code ShinyHappyMoms25 so they can gift you the self-care and support you have more than earned.

PPS: Please share this with any mamas who need to hear a “Me too. You’re not the only one.” and the next time you're out to lunch with 10 mothers, remember AT LEAST 2 of them experienced PPD.

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