“The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world”-W.R. Wallace
How can a Mama find her rhythm through yoga, business and motherhood?
“I’m not good enough”, “I’m not that flexible” or “I don’t have time”.
These are some of the common phrases that we hear when we think about creating a business while balancing motherhood and doing things that we love.
This month, we have showcased an amazing mama in our MamaBuzz and Beyond Series on Youtube.
She is truly a star in her own ways and she continues to inspire women as they deepen their connection with their child and their own selves.
If you missed it, visit us on Youtube and check out ” The Benefits of Yoga + Simple Poses To Start”. We also did a 20 minute Prenatal Yoga Class! Be sure to subscribe as well!
I am so proud to have connected with her and she truly deserves to be called our MomStar of the Month.
What is MomStar of the Month all about?
MomStar of the Month shares inspirational stories of women, no matter what background, ethnicity or race; has a great career or not, is a first-time mom or not, it doesn’t matter.
Any Mom is a star in her own ways and with these stories, we share the journey of moms who aim to inspire others and transform lives with a purpose.
We highlight different women in our society, with their spirit to motivate others. A unique opportunity for all of us to hear and understand how these Moms learned how to flourish and balance their lives in today’s overwhelming world.
Read more below as I share with you the story behind DragonFly Maternity with the one and only, Cher Compton.
1. Tell us about yourself (ex: Family, Children, Profession/ Background, what do you do, etc)
I’m the mama of two wonderful boys, and my hubby & I have lived here in YYC for the past 18 years.
I was an Art Director at a publishing company for 12 of those years, and it was a wonderful way to meet many local small business owners…
In addition to the graphic design aspect which I loved (and still do, with all of my own marketing for Dragonfly), it was inspiring to see so many people passionately build their dreams. I feel Calgary has a great entrepreneurial vibe that way.
Starting up Dragonfly Maternity was really an accumulation of my life experiences into parenthood. I’ve been a consignment shopper for a long time (shout-out to my friend Amanda at @feistyconsignment ).
When I became pregnant with my first son 12 years ago, it seemed like a perfect time to shop second-hand and update my wardrobe for this short period of time… however I didn’t find much for maternity consignment.
I ended up dropping a lot of cash to get maternity clothes that would be comfortable & professional for my downtown work world. But it seemed like there should be a better way.
Fast-forward a few years when I was pregnant with my second son, there still wasn’t much for second-hand maternity options; it really felt like an untapped market.
I had some friends that were going through that stage of life as well, and we shared a bit of clothing which is always great if you have the option; but doesn’t always work out depending on seasons, sizes, and styles.
From there, I had a vision: to create a space where mamas could come shopping for affordable maternity & nursing wear, in a clean + well-organized boutique, with curated style, wide selection, in a friendly, down-to-earth environment where they could feel connected + supported.
That is where it all began for me; and it grew to be even more dynamic as I started chatting with other mom friends, and looking at the supports & connection points that I had along my journey of motherhood.
I’ve practiced yoga for a very long time (that’s a whole other story, Lol), and when I was pregnant, I fell in love with Prenatal Yoga…it allowed me to tune into my changing body, prepare for childbirth, bond with my baby, and connect with other moms.
That is what led me to become a Yoga teacher, and it integrated so beautifully into my vision of supporting mamas on many levels. I also love collaborating + educating + socializing, which is where the events & workshops fall into place at our space.
2. What’s new in the studio? How are you coping with the new norm?
Through COVID, there has definitely been a lot of shifts & changes for the studio classes.
We launched our virtual classes in April, and although I immensely miss seeing all of our students in person, we’ve strived to keep that connection via live interactive classes — chat time online before & after the classes, to keep the face-time alive!
With new guidelines in place and the re-opening procedures rolling out in our city, we are just starting to re-introduce our in-person classes this month, which will be socially-distanced (very small class sizes!), masks are worn anytime we’re off our mats (entering & exiting the studio in the higher traffic areas), and all yoga props sanitized after every class, in addition to the high-touch areas being sanitized before each class.
We will continue to stream the classes online as well, for the participants who prefer to join us online.
We’re doing our best to stay connected through these challenging times… our health — physical, mental, and emotional — are so important!
3. Why DragonFly Maternity and what made you start your business?
In the very early days of becoming a mom, I felt a lot of emotions….
With the love & joy, there was also a lot of anxiety, fear, extreme fatigue, isolation, uncertainty…feelings that I wasn’t expecting to have in motherhood, and quite honestly, did not feel like ‘me’.
Physically, there was a lot of healing to do; however, it was the emotional and mental heaviness that really shook me…one of the lowest places that I have ever been in.
I remember one morning, about a month after giving birth, my little guy was crying and I was feeling heavy with all of this… and I thought — this little guy feels my emotions, and I’m all he knows right now… I’m his world and he is my world (those early days are very consuming with a newborn!)
I thought, what kind of world do I want to create for him? Not an environment of anxiety and fear, that’s for sure.
So at that moment, even though I felt exhausted and stressed, and all the heavy feels, I decided to smile at him and look into his eyes and let him know that I love him.
And he smiled back at me for the first time… his first true “real” smile. (It still makes me cry when I think about this moment in time).
That was a pivotal point in my life.
I determined that each day — even when I’m feeling down with whatever life may be presenting to me — that I would find the good, find the reasons to smile, to be a light to those around me. #enjoythejourney became my mantra, and I eventually got it tattooed on my leg with a dragonfly… my transformation story.
Dragonflies have always been very captivating to me, even as child… I loved watching them soar through the sky, land on my finger, their intricate wings taking flight again.
Many years ago, I learned about the symbolism that dragonflies portray: transformation, adaptability, and self-realization.
As women going through the journey of parenthood, I thought it is an accurate symbol of this transformation into becoming a mama, adapting to family life, and the realization of what we are capable of, and also the realization of the depth that our little ones bring into our lives (I have learned so much from my kids!)
That really embodies what Dragonfly Maternity is all about.
4. What is your vision for DragonFly Maternity? What products/services do you offer?
I always say — its not just a clothing store, or somewhere that you exercise. Its a space that you can be seen & heard, be supported, and connected with others going through this journey of parenthood.
I absolutely love when mamas come in and are excited about finding clothes that make them feel good & look good, and give us positive feedback on the price points and selection and the vibe in our space… the emotion behind that is the experience that I strive to create for women.
I still remember the first time a customer expressed that while shopping with us — she came out of the change room beaming, saying “I feel cute again! I can show off my baby bump, these outfits are so awesome and so cheap! Thank you!”
And the moments like when a Prenatal Yoga student comes by the shop to visit after her babe is born and I get to meet these little ones… Its moments like that as a small business owner, that is the “why” behind what I do!
I plan to continue growing this community.
We’ve been getting customer feedback about additional locations around the city and elsewhere in the country; so we shall see.
For now, I’m continuing to build the foundation of what things look like in these changing times.
One of the best pieces of advice that I received from a good friend of mine, is — Be scalable. Pivot and grow in the directions that are flowing.
5. What specific strategies do you use to balance your schedule as a mom, a fitness coach and a business owner?
Good question, haha. Its not easy to find balance, as there is always *something* to be done on my many ‘to do’ lists.
I have found more success in looking at finding my “rhythm and flow” in life. And that changes through various stages — with my kids & family life, as my business grows, as my needs change.
A strategy that I’ve built upon over the years is to start with my priority tasks for the day (both personally and professionally), outline some goals to follow those priorities, and being ok with the rest of the tasks that may or may not get done.
And then stick with those priorities for where I focus my time/energy/money/resources.
To ground myself-physically, mentally, emotionally — I always start my mornings with meditation and some sort of movement; check my calendar for commitments; and create that list of my priorities & goals for the day ahead (I literally sleep with a pen & paper beside our bed, to jot down those things that keep me up at night).
From there, I work for a bit in my home office, have some time with my kiddos, head into the shop + studio for retail and/or fitness schedule depending on the day, and then most evenings we do something active outdoors as a family / spend time together, before having a late dinner.
Some nights I work late on a project while everyone else is in bed, some evenings I catch up with a friend, and other nights I’m chilling with the fam & to bed early.
As with any mom & business owner, each day has a mix of predictable planned segments as well as unknown variables.
Ebbing & flowing between those moments, with the intention that I will achieve what I need to get done each day. Sometimes easier said than done, haha, however that is the MO each day.
6. What brought you into teaching yoga and what are the benefits of doing yoga?
As I touched on above; I’ve practiced yoga for a long time, and I love the way that it grounds me and uplifts me, this beautiful harmony through wherever I’m at.
Coming to my mat has been a consistent part of my life for the past 15 years or so, through all of the ups & downs, and I’ve learned a lot about myself through my Yoga practice.
Becoming pregnant and discovering Prenatal Yoga, is really what lit me up about becoming a Yoga teacher.
In 2015, I went on an incredible Yoga retreat in Peru with a wonderful group of women and invested many hours of meditating + journaling on my future ahead — what I wanted my life to look like, what I wanted Dragonfly to be, and how I was going to get there.
I came back from Peru with my heart & mind expanded into this new realm of my future endeavors. I resigned from my position as the Art Director at OT Communications in the spring of 2016 — which was a job and a company and team that I really loved, so it was hard to leave that, but I knew if I was going to take the leap of growing this idea & vision that I had, that it was time to take that step.
And immediately following that, I immersed myself in the 200 Hr Intensive Yoga Training at Passage Studios and spent that month of July fully diving into this new world.
It was like the tip of the iceberg that keeps on growing… the more that I get into my self-practice, further educational training & workshops, and truly living & learning in each class that I guide or participate in.
Yoga has the ability to meet us wherever we are at. To build strength & endurance, find release and expansion, to challenge us when we are ready for the challenge, to slow us down when we need to ground & go within, to grow physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually — all of those layers that make up who we are.
And it has the ability to connect us with like-minded individuals.
Some of my dearest friends are the ones that I’ve met through Yoga in one way or another.
7. Leave us a message to all Moms who are searching for inspiration or simply those who struggle in balancing wellness and motherhood in general.
Finding your tribe is so important.
Be kind to yourself, be honest with yourself, and be vulnerable — ask for help!
We are not meant to do parenthood alone.
Another thing that I’ve learned along the way… No one can give from an empty cup…. make sure to put *yourself* on the list of things to take care of as well 😉
OUR 2020 MOMSTARS OF THE MONTH
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