Over the past few months on the blog, we’ve been sharing experiences and perspectives from lots of different mamas… we love it, and hope you do, too, so that is not going to change! But this week, one of our YMS mamas had a pretty amazing opportunity, and we want to share it with you!
Have you heard of The MOMS? Based in New York City, Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein are content creators whose resumes include co-hosting their signature celebrity town hall Mamarazzi events, a Sirius XM radio show, and numerous appearances on various news networks, including The Today Show. (Swoon!) They are a HUGE source of inspiration and community for moms and women all over the country and are absolutely delightful, empowering, and REAL, oh so real, women. To put it bluntly, we at YMS have developed gigantic mom-crushes on both of them.
They started running a weekly feature, #WCW (that stands for Woman Crush Wednesday, for our non-hashtagers), on their Instagram feed where they highlight a kick-ass mama who is striving to make a difference for her ladytribe, and her family. This week they featured none other than OUR very own Amber Michels, and we are so pumped for her! We wanted to share the Q&A with you and hope you enjoy hearing a little more from Amber!
**We’ve copied the Q&A below, but here is a link to The MOMS blog if you want to check it out there: http://www.themoms.com/wcw-your-milk-shoppe/
Why did you start your business?
When I was a new mom I struggled so much during the first few months. I thought that I was so prepared because I read all of the books, took every parenting class under the sky, and bought the best baby gear. But, all of the sudden my world was turned upside when my daughter was born. As a new mom I could not believe the love I felt for her, it was amazing. Unfortunately, I struggled with extreme post-partum anxiety and it hindered my ability to fully enjoy being a mom; it was so isolating. I began to take steps to get help, I made a point to journal about all of my struggles, and before I knew it a business plan was writing itself. It was solely based around supporting and empowering moms through services, research and education. I then went on to become a certified Maternity Consultant and learned the ins and outs of an industry I didn’t even know existed. I toyed around with different business names and concepts, but kept coming back to the same thing: I wanted to be the “milk” for other new moms… because moms need milk, too. From there, my business, Your Milk Shoppe, was born.
Where do you see your business in 5 years?
Growing! It wasn’t long after I started Your Milk Shoppe that I realized I couldn’t do this all on my own… nor did I want to! My sister-in-law was a huge believer and lover of Your Milk Shoppe from the very beginning, so when it came time to ask someone to join me, she was a given. We were both raising our little ones in big cities, away from family, and we knew this was something that was so desperately needed in both of our respective parts of the country. There truly is strength in numbers, and together we are Moms on a Mission. (Plus, I’m convinced every woman needs a workwife, and I’m so glad she’s mine!)
I launched Your Milk Shoppe in Greenville, SC, and Kimmie is in Chicago, IL. We are excited to share that we are currently expanding into other cities throughout the United States, starting this spring in Atlanta, GA! Aside from the Shoppe’s in Greenville, Chicago, and Atlanta, we also offer virtual one-on-one consulting services so we can help mamas, regardless of where they are located. We will also begin to host classes that will help moms (and dads and siblings, too!) prepare for baby and so much more! There is a lot on our docket right now, and I couldn’t more excited for this growth and the opportunity to support and uplift moms all over the country.
In 5 years I hope for Your Milk Shoppe to be a household name, a universal support system that will allow moms all over the country to access the necessary information they need in order to fully enjoy their parenting journey!
If there was one tip you could give a working mom what would it be?
When you are at work, be at work completely. Stop feeling guilty about not being home more. When you are at home, be at home completely. Stop feeling guilty about not working more. You owe yourself some peace of mind!
If you could do one thing over as a mom what would it be?
I would have asked for help more as a new mom instead of trying so hard to appear that I had it all together. No new mom has it together. Period. We’re all trying, but the struggle is SO real. And you know what? That’s OK! That’s all part of it. The more honest we are with ourselves and each other about this beautiful, stressful, funny, terrifying, one-of-a-kind time in life, the better off we’ll all be!
Whats your Mom Motto?
Community over Competition. Hands down. Whether it’s with other mamas or other business owners, one thing is true: there is nothing more powerful than women who genuinely and fiercely support and love one another.