Episode 31

Motherhood Unmasked with Vanessa A. Harris Episode 31 Embracing You

How Do You Do With Embracing You?

We just talked about adaptability in the last episode, then here comes the life lesson—a winter storm Texas was in no way prepared for. And this mama pulled on every skill I ever knew to make it through with my family. 

My take away from the whole ordeal? The importance of embracing me and the way I roll. And in this episode I share why you should embrace you! 

Homework: Celebrate You!

Make that list I talked about in the episode.

Subscribe to Motherhood Unmasked: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Stitcher | TuneIn | iHeart Radio

Connect with Vanessa!

Do you know why I call you Mama BARE? Because you’re unmasked and unapologetic in admitting motherhood is tough, and you appreciate conversation that honors that.

So, connect with me for more support, empowering the best version of you as a mom.

For encouraging weekly midweek emails and exclusive access to practical resources that help YOU shine, tap “COUNT ME IN.”

Ready for MORE Motherhood Unmasked episodes?

Episode 31 transcript

What does a podcast sound like recorded in the middle of a freakish winter storm with sketchy power sources?
Well we’re about to find out in Episode 31.

Hey there Mama Bare, Vanessa here with compassion, candor and clarity for you the mom craving real talk about it the challenges you face like multiple powers outages in frigid temps and oh yeah all that during a pandemic!
So I’m grateful I can even record this and today we’re talking woman to woman—not that we haven’t been women all this time, but typically we talk mom to mom.
And for sure, one of the challenges of motherhood is remembering you’re a woman first—and taking care of yourself as such.
So, I’m recording this episode during a freakish week in the Houston area with frigid temps sparking a power outage—pun intended.
It’s the kind of scenario that gives you a lot of time to think.
To think about what you’ve been thinking about.
And one of the things I confirmed wrapped in a blanket looking at the dusting of snow is—I like me.
It’s not that I haven’t always liked me.
But there’ve been times I’ve had to fight to like me in response to the frequent reminders I’m not everyone’s up of tea.
And if you relate to dialing yourself back so you don’t stick out so much like me. Or wearing a mask to completely transform into someone else to be liked—then this episode is for you.
Because embracing you and how your wired has everything to do with how you show up in all your roles as a woman.
And if the drama of puberty, society’s portrayal of the ideal woman and female insecurities dont make it hard enough, social media is the final nail in the coffin.
People will have you out here thinking you’re not enough or too much—UNLESS you’ve already settled the matter in your own mind.
I’m an introvert with a clear opinion and the courage to share it when I’m ready.
And that’s BEFORE the whole being from New York part.
And when I share it, the humor or the honesty may surprise you. But that’s me.
Everyone doesn’t like whit or candor but that’s okay. I’m my own kind of wonderful and so are you.
Its how God made you and as long as you being you is respectful, embrace you.
You don’t need anyone else’s permission to do so.
It’s crazy how this becomes an issue for us at younger and younger ages.
My daughter is a middle schooler and I remember how shocked I was over the last couple school years when she would give me the run down of her day.
So much drama that really amounted to girls finding each other’s difference threatening.
No matter how much they had in common, they ostracized each other over the one or two ways they were unique.
You remember how distressing that was as a young girl—figuring yourself out and trying to like what you discover.
You may still be there as a grown woman, but I’ll tell you like I told her.
You’re a gem, so stop trying to look like a stone. Seen by everyone, but nothing special.
Gems are hidden treasure people have to discover.
And like a natural gem, when they find you they find a gem in process—rough, uncut but becoming.
It’s how you’re handled that reveals your beauty and sparkle.
And even THEN everyone won’t appreciate you.
Some people prefer emeralds to rubies. Some like the mysterious quality of a sapphire to the brilliance of a diamond.
But no matter what gem you are, if you’re a gem you’re priceless.
And you have to believe that about yourself when your hidden, lonely and misunderstood.
You have to believe you’re a gem before anyone else will—no matter how many or how few in number.
Because as I said before, what you believe about yourself affects how you show up in ALL your roles as a woman.
It affects who you marry and how you conduct yourself in marriage, who you select as friends, the boundaries you set, and how you show up as a mom.
So celebrate how you’re wired.
And stop perceiving your value based on how people respond to you.
Now, we’re always a work in progress and you should keep growing to become the best version of yourself, but if you’re a quiet, introspective person who weighs her words before speaking—then own it.
Don’t accept people mislabeling you as stuck up. You’re both discerning and a deep well—watering many.
If you have an electric personality that lifts the energy of every room you enter. Great! And don’t let people categorize you as an attention seeker.
You may love the attention but you also use it to bring joy to others—and that’s a blessing.
If you’re a take charge kind of woman with vision, who knows exactly what she wants, don’t let timid wishy washy people condemn you as aggressive with comments like “she’s always doing the most.”
Women like you are the reason things get done and injustices are exposed—because you call things what they are.
If you’re the kind of woman who keeps to yourself, minding your own business but quick to show mercy to those in need—that’s beautiful.
You may not have the bandwidth for everyday friendship, but you have the heart of a servant, popping up out of nowhere to help someone in crisis.
And you can do it because you’re not entangled in a bunch of obligations, making you available to be a blessing.
So why dim your light to meet other people’s misplaced expectations when who you are is EXACTLY who someone needs?
By the way, who you are is exactly who your children need. God KNOWS you’re wired just the way needed to shape and bring the best out of them so please be authentic self.

This week’s homework is celebrating you. And I mean the very things that people either love you for or not so much.
Write them both out in two columns. Read them off expressing gratitude by saying things like, “I love that I’m bold, or quiet or thoughtful”—whatever things you’re complimented for.
Then look at the qualities that people resist and be honest with yourself. Are you difficult or just different?
Difficult doesn’t mean wrong, but it’s an area where growth can occur—so embrace that.
It may mean better word choice or timing in expressing yourself or developing your empathy muscle.
But if you’re getting the side eye just because you’re different aka unique, well that is not your problem—so don’t embrace it as one.
I hope this episode serves as a big hug from me to you. I love how a listener described the podcast as me giving you a big squeeze and telling you it’s gonna be okay—because it really be even when it’s scary to drop the mask as a woman.
This idea of embracing yourself and the members of your family is something I’m so passionate about I’ll share more in the next episode.
And I’m looking forward to not having to do so by flashlight!
Hey we made it! Hope all is well with you and your family and remember, when it comes to you being the mother of your children—YOU are the woman for the job. Take care.