Brave Mama in My Family Story #18 - Cherie Clonan

July 18, 2016

Brave Mama in My Family Story #18 - Cherie Clonan

I've secretly fallen in love with Cherie Clonan from The Digital Picnic. (Shhh... She doesn't know it yet!) She is funny. She is authentic. She shares a love for teaching all things Social Media (which she and her partner, Catherine are awesome in). She is a business mum that I admire. 

So it was such an honour when I asked Cherie to be a part of our Brave Mama in My Family Series and she said YES. It's like when you propose and she says yes. There was a lot of excitement bubbling over when she said yes. 

Cherie shares a side that is raw and real about her motherless motherhood journey. Her journey is one of strength and lots of courage. Join me to welcome Cherie into our Brave Mama in My Family series and be inspired by this brave mama! 

 

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Cherie Clonan_ Brave Mama in my Family_photo 1

 

1. Tell us about yourself, where you are based and a little about your little one(s)/ the work that you do.

 

My name is Cherie, & I am Mum to Max (5) and Frankie (nearly 3).

 

We live in a 100 year old, non-(adequately) insulated home that is freezing in Winter, & an absolute sweatfest in Summer, ha!  And I love it to pieces.  Before we owned our home, it was owned by a drag Queen, & so it’s just as unique, quirky and hilariously extravagant as I imagine her personality was.

 

I love my home, & we’re located in a pocket of Melbourne that seems to be filled with creatives; I feel at home both within my own home, & the part of Melbourne we’ve chosen to live in.

 

Work-wise, I am one half of The Digital Picnic (www.thedigitalpicnic.com.au), which is a digital marketing agency based in Melbourne.  We run all kinds of exciting digital campaigns / marketing activity for some really rad clients, & we also run social media workshops [both in Melbourne, & Australia-wide] to teach non-social savvy business owners how to improve their social media marketing efforts for their small to large businesses.

 

Never in my life, have I loved a job more.

 

The boss (i.e me, … & my business partner) is mild to moderately ok too ;)

 

 

2. What is the most difficult/challenging thing you had to deal with in your mama-hood journey?

 

For me, it’s been trying (& failing) to find my own Mothering feet as a Motherless Mother.

 

My own Mum passed away when I was 22, & whilst it was tough then, it’s felt so considerably tougher now that I am a Mum too.  I can’t describe the grief, & I don’t know that I’ll honestly ever truly come to terms with it.  All I know is that it feels incredibly lonely without her.  

 

I find myself (rather embarrassingly) trying to befriend my own friend’s Mums, & really just … craving their friendship.  I think it’s mostly just that; I yearn for the friendship & sisterhood that can only happen between a Mother and her daughter.


My friends have become Mothers themselves too now, & I’ve seen how much their own Mother’s genuinely care about their introduction to Motherhood.  They just … hang around.  They visit them.  They bounce babies on their laps while my friends take showers.  They accompany them to the supermarket, & help them get that sh*t done (because we all know how fun a grocery shop is with a toddler and a newborn, ha!).  They fuss over my friends, & make sure they’re fed, & happy, & can have a vent when they want to, or a laugh, or a cry, or just anything, … without judgement.  And when they’ve finished listening, they boot their daughter (& her husband) out the door for a date night, & I just think, sh*t, … that must be really good for your marriage.

 

Guilt free babysitting.  Can you even imagine?!

 

Man, I want that.  I want all of that.  But mostly, I just want, … a friend.  More than anything else.  Just a woman-friend.  My Mum.  My friend.  Like, exactly that.

 

So that is - hands down - the most difficult aspect of Mamahood I’ve had to navigate.  I can’t describe it to anyone; not my husband, not my friends, not even my Dad (God love him, he’s an angel!), but it’s the pining for a Mother that I’ve absolutely battled with during my own Mamahood journey.

 

"(The most difficult thing in my motherhood journey...) is trying (& failing) to find my own Mothering feet as a Motherless Mother"

- Cherie Clonan

 

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Brave Mama in My Family

 

 

3. What is the bravest thing you had to do as a mama?

 

To be completely honest, it was the leap from a secure well-paid digital marketing role to … small business owner.

 

Lord-y!

 

It’s been a (nearly) two year shock to the system (all systems actually, … but mostly the nervous system), & only now is it really beginning to pay off / feel like it might have all been worthwhile.

 

That said, ask me again next week, because we all know about that crazy little entrepreneurial rollercoaster they call small business ownership, don’t we? ;)

  

Cherie Clonan_ Brave Mama in My Family_ Photo 2

 

4. Is there another brave mama who inspires you? How has she inspired you?

 

I’m inspired (& surrounded) by brave women daily; my best friend who lost her Father this year, my other best friend who is battling infertility, entrepreneurial friends taking entrepreneurial leaps of faith, my business partner, my personal trainer, another friend who fought PND and won (& then showed kindness and compassion to me when I myself came up against that ugly black dog last year), a former colleague who has just taken her x2 kids and literally ran from a pretty severe domestic violence situation, my Mother’s group friends who wear their hearts on their sleeves and make you feel a little less alone in your Mothering adventures, my part-time working Mama friends who’ve been conned into somehow trying to squeeze full-time workloads into part-time hours (& quite often, get remunerated for a part-time role despite the fact that it’s a full-time workload!), I just feel like … I’m surrounded by brave women everywhere.

 

Daily.

 

Different forms of bravery, but strong, brave women nonetheless.

 

"I'm surrounded by brave women everywhere"

- Cherie Clonan

 

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Brave Mama in My Family

 

 

5. What would you say to another mama who may be going through similar circumstances?

 

In regards to my Motherless Mother comrades? I’d say that a (very recent) turning point for me has come by telling myself I can either grieve for the rest of my days, or I can focus on living the healthiest life I possibly can so that I am (hopefully) around for my own children for as long as possible.

 

I hope that when they become parents, I can be everything to them, that I wished I had for myself.

 

This little promise I have with myself, fills me with peace.

 

"I hope that when they (my children) become parents, I can be everything to them, that I wished I had for myself."

- Cherie Clonan

 

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Brave Mama in My Family

 

 

6. What is one word/phrase for you in your mamahood journey?

 

Kindness.

 

I just want my children to remember me for my kindness, & so I display kindness as much as possible (without getting shat on, of course! ha!).

 

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Kindness. I absolutely love this word. Because I think if I can sum up the 3 key things I want to pass on to my children, it would be Kindness, Love & Generosity. 

 

"Kindness is the language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see!" 

- Mark Twain

 

If you are navigating through the difficulty of losing your mum in your journey as a mother, may you find your turning point and walk the rest of your motherhood journey, with confidence and courage. Know that you are not alone. And you can get through it. 

Have a most wonderful week ahead. And may your week sparkle with lots of kindness. 

x Meng

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can follow Cherie at: 

Instagram handle: @thedigitalpicnic

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TheDigitalPicnic/

 

 

 




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