Meet Lauren. Although this interview was done virtually, I met Lauren years ago when my oldest and her daughter were itty bitty toddlers. She has always been a mother that I admire. She works so hard everyday to give her daughter a beautiful life. There is so much strength in her and it shows. Thank you, Lauren for being here and sharing with us.
These are the questions I asked her.
1. Tell us a little bit about you.
Hi! I’m Lauren, I’m 32, a single mom of 9 year old Charlotte. I’ve moved to Victoria, British Columbia a year ago from Dayton, Ohio to be near my mom. I’m a barber and I’ve always worked full time. It was a huge life change to move to the west coast/different country, a lot of jumping through hoops had to happen, but someone asked me if I was happy back in Ohio, I had honestly never thought about it - I was so caught up in the daily grind of work and being a single mom, I had never stopped and asked myself this question, and I didn’t know the answer, which allowed me to acknowledge that I was just going through the motions, so I made a big life change. It’s been great I love being near my my mom she lives right down the street and my sister is just a ferry ride away. I just think it’s really important to be close to your mom or a maternal figure when you have a kid/kids, I didn’t have that the first 8 years and it was hard and it’s been so great for Charlotte to have that connection.
2. What is your biggest struggle/obstacle being a single mother?
I have a few obstacles being a single mother but I think the main struggle is just getting everything done with making sure Charlotte is cared for and working full time, also while keeping my sanity, like sometimes I just have to say ok that’s not going to get done right now or maybe not even this week and that’s ok. Another obstacle is financial stuff, like I have a great job and I work really hard but if something happens it’s on me and that can stress me out, but I do work really hard and that’s something that I’ve always been proud of. Another struggle that comes along with being a single mom and also being a barber (with lots of tattoos) is that people that don’t know me sometimes make assumptions about how I am as a person in general, like that I’m not educated or that I must be a bad mom, etc, I don’t know I’ve heard it all, but I usually win people over pretty quickly, I’m just doing the best I know how.
3. What is something that helps you take care of you? Self care.
Woa, this so important. There are a few little rituals like a hot bath, comfy pajamas, and a tv series after I put Charlotte to bed, which is what I’ve been doing for the last week as it’s been kind of fall like weather all of the sudden, I really like being cozy during fall and that makes me feel happy & comfortable. I get my nails done every 3rd Friday and that makes me feel good too, my nail guy just moved though I’m irrationally sad about it. I also like to do a little workout whether it be a run near the ocean or just a YouTube workout (Madfit on Youtube)it helps me clear my head.
4. What is your favorite time of day with Charlotte?
I love our evenings, it’s when everything is chill, we eat dinner and talk about our day. Sometimes we will play a board game or card game, or go on a walk down to the ocean, just hang out, the hectic parts of the day are over and we can kind of just be. I’ve always felt the most calm in the evenings. It’s especially fun now that she’s a little older because she can really communicate things with me and has a great personality, she’s really very funny.
5. What is something that makes you realize that you are a good mom?
When Char tells me I’m the best mom ever that pretty much makes my life — Also I’ve had friends reach out to me for advice or just message me to tell me that they think I’m inspiring/they look up to me and that literally makes me want to break down and cry a million tears because I don’t ever think about someone noticing my efforts, but they notice and it just feels good to hear that, I think moms need to hear that. Like, if you know a mom, please for the love reach out to them because they need to hear it. That feels really good though when I get messages like that.
6. What is your favorite thing about being a mom?
Geez, why is this such a tough question? There are so many good things... and it changes with every age. I love how it has evolved me into this best version of myself. I think that comes with her and I both maturing, I had Charlotte when I was young(ish) so I can’t say that I’ve always been this version, but the last 5 years I have been the best version of me and I’m very grateful for that. Maybe it’s a weird answer but I just love being a mom, I literally don’t know how to live any other way.
7. Do you struggle with comparison? What helps you not compare?
I definitely struggle with comparison. It’s strange too because it’s in a few different areas, like for myself physically, being the best mom, material things, and also barbering. I have someone special in my life that has helped me by getting me more into nature and into a routine of saving money and spending less money on things to make me feel good temporarily. Now hear me out, all of that has put this new perspective in my life like I don’t really need to be comparing myself because at the end of the day what I really want is to be able to travel & make great memories. We weren’t put on this earth to be in a race with others. There’s also this whole barber culture which is fine, but it’s very hip and who’s the coolest, I’m kind of old school, I like going to work and having connections with all different kinds of people, making them feel good because they look good, clients notice when you care and they will always come back when you do, you don’t have to be the coolest.
8. What is something you have learned from Charlotte?
To be unapologetically myself, kids are just so who they are when they are little and I think we can all learn a lot from that. It’s ok to be a little weird or silly, just be you, boo boo.
9. When do you feel most beautiful?
I loveeee when my hair is freshly washed and done. There’s something about your hair being all fresh and great that makes you just want to hair toss and live your best life.
Your favorite song?
I just discovered Kasey Musgraves, I’m obsessed with her songs ‘Velvet Elvis’, ‘High Times’, “Dime store Cowgirl’ and ‘Golden Hour’ ... Im a huge Dolly Parton fan and I feel like she’s the Dolly Parton of our generation. I first saw her on NPR tiny desk and I was blown away. I also think I’ve listened to “Ivy” by Frank Ocean approximately 2.5 million times.
Your favorite sweet? Literally anything chocolate or key lime pie.
A guilty pleasure? Watching Riverdale haha 🥴
Favorite time of year? Summer! Fall is a close second.
Favorite color? Green
Thanks again, Lauren. And thank you all for reading.
You can find Lauren on Instagram @dollywhirledbarber