Inspiring stories: Motherhood made me powerful with Mela Murder
I suffer from imposter syndrome.. I think it's due to the fact at a really young age I was given an opportunity which totally transformed my life but my fate of it all was in the hands of a man. Coming up in a male-dominated industry I often felt small... stupid... like I didn’t really belong. It wasn’t until I became a mother and was forced to deal with parts of myself I kept hidden from the surface for many years... When I became a mother I reclaimed my power as a woman because I recognized the power that is and was always within me. All that I experienced during my first pregnancy the pain and heartache left me feeling extremely alone I decided to come forward with how I truly felt it was raw and ugly and intense and everything I needed to release in order to lift the chains of voicelessness. My story resonated with so many women, Women from all over the world who had gone through similar situations but would've never known about had I kept my story to myself. Since then I've created a community of strong single mothers, a sisterhood I am forever grateful for.
- What do you find the hardest part of being a single mother?
Being alone. Not having anyone with me to experience the joys and hardships that I go through daily with my daughters. Not being able to collapse into a hug after fighting with my 2-year-old or someone there to say “I got this.. go nap, go for a walk, go have a day for yourself” Its all me by myself every single day. I'm the woman and man of the house, I'm the nurturer and the disciplinary I cook I clean I throw out the trash change the diapers gives the baths pump the gas buy to food pay the bills all while pursuing my dreams on my own. It's just something I never imagined experiencing as a mother. I always ALWAYS thought I would raise children with both mommy and daddy in the picture. Its really hard sometimes but I get it all done every single day by myself and for that fact I know I am stronger then I give myself credit for.
- Do you feel there is still a stigma attached to being a single parent?
I've never experienced disgrace of any kind from others when they learn I'm a single parent. The energy is often like wow you're badass. I'm sure it exists for many women and its so unfair for single mothers to be put in that kind of light because of all that we do. Men should be throwing rose petals at our feet and thanking their gods for strong women like single mothers. We are the true heroes in the world.
- What does female empowerment mean to you?
To be a woman who is empowered is a woman who is fearless in standing in her truth. It takes a lot of courage to accept all the parts of her being her past and present her mistakes her flaws her thoughts and say okay this is me now that was me then and I am okay with all of me I love me entirely and I'm excited to evolve into the woman I aspire to be.
- How are you teaching your little ones to be an advocate of female empowerment
I believe knowledge is power. I am constantly teaching Amethyst (my 2-year-old) many things... preparing her for the world now in subtle ways such as learning multiple languages, reading, and expression through dance and art, so that she won’t struggle later on, so that she won’t feel stupid or voiceless. She’ll have the knowledge as well as the confidence to know her worth and speak up for what she stands for and accomplish her passions so that she'll know her place in this world is meaningful. I encourage her every single day to be her full authentic self. I shower both of my daughters with love hugs and kisses and tell them they are Goddesses and they have a purpose and they are beautiful and blessed and that mommy loves them so so much. With that love, they will grow to be women of love and share it with the world.
- What advice would you give to young women?
TAKE YOUR TIME. Young women in this generation seem soooooo desperate for love and they are constantly seeking validation in men. It's so sad... A man's attention to you does not determine your worth and it is so important for young women to really fully understand what that means and apply it to their lives. Learn who you are and why you feel the need to seek this validation and when you do find the ways to heal yourself so that eventually you can love yourself enough to put yourself first. Like actually first. Easier said then done but definitely not impossible. Know that you are special and beautiful in your own unique way. Lift yourself up. You are worth it.
- How do you think being a female has changed in the last 10 years?
More and more women are advocating for themselves now. Women are speaking up all around the world and they are demanding to be seen and heard. We aren’t with playing along with quiet games anymore which so many women are coming forward about their female experiences like what age a woman should have a child or whether a woman should choose between her career or a child, or the pressure of how we should look what we wear how we raise our kids how we interact with men or abuse of any kind being shamed for being vocal about it.. Women have had enough and it's beautiful and necessary. We are demanding respect.