Ever felt a bit lost when it comes to making a real friend in the world of mommyhood? Ever need someone to talk to about something besides diaper changes and preschool placements? Yep, us too. The gals behind Hey Mama Co., a network of creative mothers, shared their story today about how their daughters brought them together and how that friendship grew into their passion project. And don’t forget the grab the February box they curated for us here.
Tell us a little about each of your personal and professional backgrounds.
Amri: I come from the publishing world and was a magazine editor at Cosmopolitan for a long time. Originally from Florida, I moved to NYC in my early twenties and have never left. I have two little girls, Mari Rose (4 1/2) and River Olive (7 weeks) who are my world.
Katya: Before Heymama I was in business development and marketing for tech companies. Having grown up in New York City, I was always surrounded by and introduced to culture by my mother. She took me to modern dance, operas and ballets and traveled with me from a young age, which shaped a lot of who I became.
Describe what you're doing with Heymama.
At Heymama we're connecting creative and entrepreneurial mothers who are passionate about building their businesses, and pursuing their dreams. We organize events in key cities, share stories of women building their empires and spotlight emerging voices and brands that you should know about. Heymama's network includes both influencers and business owners, which we connect through social and digital programs.
Tell us how you two met and where the idea for Heymama came from.
We had the craziest chance meeting. Amri and I didn't know each other before we each had our daughters and both really didn't have a close friend who was a mom at the time. Coincidentally, our nannies (we were both still working full-time office jobs) had met at the park and decided to have a playdate. It went as well as two 3 months old playing together could, but Amri's nanny Disha left a blanket at my house. My nanny had to leave unexpectedly and so when she reached out to get the blanket, they weren’t able to connect. Amri was a busy editor and in other times may have let the blanket go, what were the chances she could find me? However she decided to post it on this message board called HRP Mamas for women living downtown. I coincidentally was scrolling through my email and read the message. It said, "Looking for Lili's mom, lost blanket" and I said, “Wait. I have this adorable blanket!” so I wrote back to her. She came over to pick it up and we ended up hanging out for hours. We had wine, talked about art and travel and we became best friends. It's been 4 1/2 years since. :)
It can be hard to find your tribe after having a baby. Why do you think this is so? What have you both found that has worked?
It really can. It's hard to get close to people when everyone is so busy. Everyone is so wrapped up in their worlds; it can be tough to make room for a new person. But when you find people that you're attracted to like a magnet you just make time and it feels so special. We've found quality over quantity to work. Focusing in the people you really want to build meaningful relationships with and being 100% present when you're with them. Figuring out the timing that works best and setting up routines, or when all else fails, FACETIME. :)
I think after having a child, many women want a change from their previous 9-to-5 but don't want to lose their skills and connections. What advice would you give them?
That's a great question. Find a passion project, something that you really love and can dedicated some time to every week that can challenge you creatively. The other piece of advice is to never stop learning, and keep in touch with the people you've worked with.
Tell us about your work dynamic. How do you two split the workload?
We work together really well, and balance each other out quite a bit. Amri normally handles the editorial aspects and I work on more of the community driven, events and social programs.
What can we look forward to in 2016 from Heymama?
We have so many exciting projects to look forward to this year!! Great events, collaborations and interviews from incredible women. We couldn't be more excited!!