San Diego, California USA
They belong to…
Kristen Roberts 33-year-old, lawyer, mother, breastfeeding advocate and business owner raised in Northern California now based out of San Diego.
What it’s like to walk in her shoes for a day…
Now? Taking care of a baby. It’s all consuming. She’s 6 weeks old, born 3 weeks early. I’m looking forward to that first full night of sleep. My bff [best friend forever] told me about her first night, and I told her it felt like she was telling me she met real life santa clause. I totally didn’t believe her, but wanted desperately for it to be true, because I wanted to meet santa too.
Growing up in her shoes she was…
I was lucky – nothing was off limits to me.
My parents weren’t particularly demanding. I was a very energetic and precocious child. My mom was a SAHM [stay at home mother] and was always looking for outlets for my energy.
We didn’t have a lot of “stuff,” we were lessons and experiences kids. I remember when we first moved from SF [San Fransisco] to my hometown of Los Gatos, we were at our neighborhood park. A new neighbor came up to 4 year old me, and asked, “what’s your name?” My response? “None of your business.” My mom was in shock! Apparently, my bff from SF told me to tell anyone who asked me a question that response.
My parents always told me I could be anything I ever wanted. If there was any “ceiling,” theoretical or otherwise, I wasn’t aware of it. My parents were great at teaching me to be strong, but shielding me from things that could prove too damaging. I was allowed to make mistakes, but never felt pressured to be something. I always put a lot of pressure on myself. Don’t know why or where it came from.
Her biggest challenges day-to-day…
Not being able to breastfeed, re-learning and redefining myself as a person, mom, woman, and business owner. It’s hard being all of those things at once.
What are the advantages of being a woman in the 21st Century?
All the technology advances. Allows us to stay connected
One thing you should know if you’re going to walk in her shoes…
The internet and social media has put increased pressure to be perfect. Women already felt this from media, but I’m hyper aware of the external pressures my daughter will feel, particularly from social media. It’s hard for me to verbalize it, but I’ve always felt like it’s “celebrated” to be ostentatiously different – ethnic looking, plus size, etc., as long as you do it in the way that people find attractive and acceptable. It’s almost like you have to be different and yourself in just the right way in order to be acceptable. Be wild, but be wild in a posed, staged way. Be plus size, but be hourglass shaped and still proportionate. Be non-white, but have blue eyes or some other White feature to make you “beautiful.” It has the tendency to always leaving women feeling as though they aren’t the right different, they aren’t the right kind of individuality.
It’s hard being a woman. We have so much available to us, so much opportunity, and yet, so little support. Many of us live away from our families and our villages aren’t always large and truly supportive. Forget about our government providing us anything, either. Being a new mom has been the most challenging thing ever.
Can you relate to Kristen’s story? Do you have a favorite quote or thought? Share it in the comments
How about YOUR shoes?
“This story, it is unique, it is hers and it tells you something about being a woman in the 21st century.
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