Oh, I have quite a treat for each of you this week as we approach Spring. I have the pleasure of introducing my “Sista from anotha Mista,” my confidante and advisor on all things personal, Tamara Plant of YOU ARE FIERCE and Mom Magazine. She is an extraordinary example of making your own trail and making it blaze behind you! her unconventional wisdom, simple approach to rejecting June Cleaver and Martha Stewart ideologies and finding our own paths to being a successful mother has helped thousands of women to stop beating themselves for not obtaining someone else’s vision of “perfection.”
Without anymore delay, I welcome Tamara!
Nothing about me is average. OK maybe I’m average in height but my personality take me from 5’5 to 8 feet tall and bullet proof, so even that makes me atypical.
Ever since I was a smartass kid growing up in the inner city of Edmonton, I always knew the universe had a plan for me; living an average life was not in the cards, and although there have been multiple speed bumps and road blocks on my journey, resilience has been my best friend. I went through some shit (haven’t we all?) but I don’t believe in playing the victim card. In fact, if you play it around me I will bitchslap you with it. The “Woe is Me” mentality doesn’t cut it, sister. Everyone has their demons and baggage; it’s what you do with it that defines your character.
Some defining moments in my life include the death of my grandma when I was 19. Losing her was a slap in the face, a wake-up call to appreciate the good things you have in your life before it’s too late. It also made me turtle into a steel shell of protectiveness thinking that if you were tough, nothing could touch you. I lived that way for a long time, expecting anyone I cared about to leave me. It wasn’t just her death that made me feel that way, there were other moments in my life that contributed to it but that was a big one.
At 21, I got my first job as a sports writer at a daily paper. At 24, I gave up my career to be with the man I eventually married and although there were moments I wished I had handled the career situation differently, I never regretted being with him.
I couldn’t give up the communications industry all together so I went into the back-end of publishing, learning the fine art of how everything worked: design, ad production, editorial calendars, print, web design. All of these skills came in quite handily when I decided to launch MOM Magazine in 2007. I enjoyed some degree of success, changing the stereotype of what a MOM is and is “suppose to” be. I enabled moms to leave the mommy-mode and embrace their true identity as a woman. It was quite liberating but after all of this time, I feel it’s time to move forward, evolve, if you will, as I have grown and changed over the past 5 years.
Three years ago, I created FIERCE: Females Inspiring Each other in a Real Community of Empowerment. It sat on the back-burner while I dealt with some personal issues (my grandfather’s journey through cancer and eventual death sent me into a tailspin of depression) but I have since resurrected what I started. FIERCE is all about inspiring other women, empowering them to celebrate their successes and embrace their spirit. It’s about peer mentoring in a no-catty bullshit environment and championing each other’s victories.
This past October, I single-handedly put together the 2nd annual FIERCE Women of the Year awards. As I walked around the event, I soaked up all of the crazy fantastic energy and thought to myself, “I did this! ME! All by myself!” I owned that moment and knew that I had come out the other side of one of the darkest times in my life.
No matter what life throws at you, no matter how many times it kicks you and you feel beaten, fight back. There is no reason to give up, ever. If you think there is a reason to just lay down and quit, find 10 reasons to get back up.
You are FIERCE. You deserve happiness and you deserve good things in your life. If you ever doubt yourself, just look in the mirror and repeat those words over and over until you feel a glimmer of strength. Hold on to that feeling and remember that nothing about YOU is average, either.
I said so.
Founder/Publisher You Are Fierce &MOM Magazine
Producer of the FIERCE Women of the Year awards
Life as a MOM doesn’t mean life as a WOMAN has to end!
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