A Day In HER Life - Emilie Desjarlais

Hi I'm Em! I'm 28 years old and a mother to one year old Brook. My daily life the past year has changed A LOT. 

I started my parenting journey completely on my own and my daily life is very different then it was only few months ago. Let me explain:

In 2015 I left for Australia with a one way ticket. I wanted to experience travelling and was hoping to establish myself as an artist in Australia. Life decided differently. I was five months pregnant when I decided it was in the best interest of my daughter and I to come back to Canada. 

The first six months of Brook's life were spent in the countryside at my mother's place. Spending this time away from the city gave me the opportunity to rest and give the best start to my daughter without me having to worry about anything else. 

Back then, our daily life was definitely slow.  Exploring the beautiful eastern townships, going on coffee dates and doing some “cardio poussette” in between nursing sessions. Some days, I would get the time to be creative and do some art while my mother took care of Brook for an hour or two. That was a typical day for me at that point.

After those six months, I moved to a suburb not far from my home city of Montreal with plans to eventually place my daughter in daycare and find a job. The first three months were hectic because I had to install and unpack everything in the new apartment without much help. Managing a new apartment, breastfeeding  and trying to find time for sleep when she would allow made progress very slow . That's when I learned the meaning of “ what doesn't kill you make you stronger.” 

Our daily routine depends on each day, but I try to cook every meal from scratch and with organic ingredients when possible. Healthy food is very important to me.  Goodfood has been very helpful in my meal planning and I typically use it three times per week. I unfortunately don't have a dishwasher so I spend a lot of time in the kitchen playing catch up.

When I first moved, I was really bummed that I was not able to create art anymore so I started doing staged photos of Brook when she's asleep. It's funny because the sleep is definitely the hardest part with Brook. I often feel like those pictures are trophies for my patience to put her to bed. She looks so beautiful and peaceful.

 I have definitely learned to turn difficult situations into something beautiful. As I don't have as much energy to paint or to draw, these mini photoshoot sessions fulfill my desire to create and compensate for the paintings I don't have time to do. Maybe when she's older and I’m nostalgic, I'll use those pictures as a subject. I don't take pictures everyday but it's part of our weekly "schedule."    

It’s a very flexible schedule. Finding a daycare has not yet happened for me, so we go to playgroups two or three mornings a week. It's great because we both get social time and she gets to spend a lot of energy. After the playgroup, I usually walk around the village to put her asleep in her pram and give us some fresh air. I take advantage of that free time to stop for coffee and run errands. I'm very lucky because almost everything I need is walking distance from the house.

Judith Cossette Photographie
Once every two weeks I bring Brook to the public pool and it’s quickly become one of her favorite activities. In the beginning I only took Brook to the pool for her enjoyment, but I have grown to love watching her get excited just seeing the pool building as we walk over.

I recently met someone that is ready to share and commit to this whole parenting experience with me. My daily life of solo mom routine is slowly changing into a family dynamic and I couldn't be happier. 

The year and a half I spent on my own with Brook taught me so much and I would do it all over again the same way but I think the timing is right for a relationship. We are currently adjusting and planning to move in all together in the city.

My daily life is currently in transition: The end of solo motherhood and my return to work :)

Merci Beaucoup, Emilie! Quelle belle vie :)
Instagram - @brookeandpeony

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